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Saturday 23 June
My.Anglia > Student services > Surveys > The National Student Survey - Information for Staff


The National Student Survey - Information for Staff

The National Student Survey (NSS) gives students an opportunity to give their opinions on their institution and course.

The NSS results are used widely by the public, in particular by prospective students and their parents to make choices about where to study.

What's the theme this year?

As an incentive to take part in the survey, and a thank you for doing so, ARU will donate 2 to charity for each completed survey. The money will be split between four charities (one local to each ARU campus). These charities were chosen by the Student Council.
This year the chosen charities are:

How do students access the survey?

  • On a PC - Visit and click on the "Complete your survey" button.
  • On the App - Tap the "Complete your survey" tile
  • In lectures - Go to and enter your Student ID number or short username.

Whos in and whos out?

As a general rule, most final year undergraduate students will be eligible for the NSS. HESA use students expected end dates as part of an algorithm to calculate whether a student should be included or not. If their end date on Astra is wrong, this may mean they have not been included in the NSS population. Their end date should be between 1 February 2018 and 31 January 2019 to be included in the National Student Survey.

A summary of eligibility for the NSS can be found on pages 79 - 85 of the National Student Survey Guidance document.

In the NSS population

  • Full and part time undergraduate students registered at our University due to end their course between 01/02/18 and 31/01/19
  • Students who have withdrawn or intermitted from their course after we have submitted the HESA return will still be in our NSS population and eligible to fill in the survey
  • If a student is included in the population and then goes on to take another course, they may be included in the population in a future year
  • Returnable students (i.e. students who are included in the HESA return).

Out of the NSS population

  • Students with a dormant status on Astra will not have been included in the population
  • Where a student has been included in the survey population for the previous year (e.g. for a final year of a foundation degree) they are excluded from the survey this year. (Students cannot be included in the population for two consecutive years and they have to be on a course that lasts more than one year a Top-Up year does not count as is not more than one year)
  • Students on short courses (less than one year long)
  • Students who are on closed courses (i.e. courses not recruiting for September 2018 entry).

Supporting materials

Students can access the NSS directly by visiting

Survey guidance notes from Ipsos MORI

These documents are also available to access on the J Drive
J:\Services\Student Services\Public\NSS\2018\Guidance

Inappropriate Influence

Ipsos MORI encourages us to communicate with our students to engage them in the NSS. We have a responsibility to ensure that our students are encouraged to give honest feedback on their learning experience. Communications and/or institutional marketing materials must not attempt to sway the opinion of students in any way.

HEFCE (in partnership with the relevant funding partners) defines inappropriate influence as any activity which may encourage students to reflect anything other than their true opinion of their experiences during their course in their NSS responses.

Ipsos MORI provide examples of inappropriate influence. These include, but are not limited to:

  • Explicitly instructing students on how to complete the survey, such as explaining the meanings of questions or the NSS scale.
  • Linking the NSS to league tables, the TEF, job prospects and the perceived value of students degrees.
  • Arranging compulsory sessions for students to complete the NSS.
  • Taking students through the survey on an individual basis. Institutions should not stand or sit beside students when they are completing the survey, or take them through their responses question-by-questions.
  • Comparing the NSS scale to other scales with different purposes, i.e. assignment marking schemes.

Further information can be found in the Ipsos MORI guidance document - What is 'inappropriate influence'?