Feedback Methods

Information on feedback collection, as well as the pros and cons of some frequently-used collection methods.

Information on feedback collection, as well as the pros and cons of some frequently-used collection methods.

Feedback Methods

How reps go about collecting feedback should be dependent on which methods are most effective within their respective subject departments and research groups. Below is a breakdown of some ways reps can collect feedback, accompanied by a list of pros and cons for each collection method.

Feedback Collection Method

Pros

Cons

Social Media Groups

  • A great way to reach out to large groups of people
  • Informal nature of social media can help people be honest about their feedback
  • If there is an active social media page or group for your department or research group, engagement with feedback requests could be quite high
  • Good for visibility and promotion of reps
  • Not everyone uses the same social media platforms
  • Discussions can go off topic easily
  • If a department or research group does not have an active social media page or group, it could be difficult to get students to engage
  • Planning is required to make sure a department’s group/page is handed over to the next set of reps

Emails

  • Can be personalised
  • A very direct way of getting in touch with people
  • Easy to communicate with large groups of people
  • You run the risk of overloading students with full inboxes
  • Students can often miss or ignore emails

Face-to-face

  • Very direct, responses given on the spot are often more honest
  • Highly engaging, people will see you as someone they can bring feedback to
  • Good way to promote visibility and engagement
  • Detailed feedback can be gathered on an individual basis
  • Can be intimidating for the person whose feedback is being requested
  • Not everyone has the confidence to go up to someone they don’t know very well
  • Time consuming
  • Much better for gathering individual feedback than feedback from large groups of people

In Lectures or Seminars

  • Very good way of advertising SSLCs/PGRLFs and reaching large groups of people
  • Highly accessible – if you’re careful about which sessions you do this in, you can engage a wide variety of students
  • If the academic taking the class shows and expresses support for your call to action to the room, it can be a powerful endorsement from staff and reinforce the importance of your message
  • Staff have very differing views on allowing this in their classes, and do not have to allow lecture hits, so you may not always receive permission to conduct them
  • There is a lot of preparatory work involved; you have to find lectures with the right variety and number of students, check with the lecturer taking the class, and prepare your message precisely before the lecture hit

There are many other methods reps can employ to ensure students are given the opportunity to voice their ideas, including (but not limited to) surveys, focus groups, notice boards, and suggestion boxes.

Mixing and matching a variety of approaches is the best way to reach the broadest audience, and we highly encourage you to take the tendencies and preferred methods of communication of your students into consideration when deciding which forms of feedback collection would be most effective.

Accessibility Tools

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