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Tuesday 29 September
My.Anglia > Student services > Surveys > The National Student Survey (NSS)


The National Student Survey (NSS)

What is the NSS?

The National Student Survey is held annually between January and April at most Higher Education Institutes across the UK and gives nearly half a million undergraduate students the opportunity to provide feedback on their course. The data produced from this survey is highly influential: it helps to inform decisions of prospective students, provides information to enhance the student experience, and supports quality assurance and accountability of higher education institutions.

You will be asked 27 core questions relating to nine different aspects of your student experience:

  • Teaching on your course
  • Learning opportunities
  • Assessment and feedback
  • Academic support
  • Organisation and management
  • Learning resources
  • Learning community
  • Student voice
  • Overall satisfaction

You will then have the opportunity to make open-ended comments on your overall experience at Anglia Ruskin. These, like your scores for the above questions, are passed on to us anonymously in order to help us identify Anglia Ruskin’s strengths and areas where we can improve. You can access the list of questions here.

Do I have to take part, and how are my contact details used?

The NSS is a unique and powerful opportunity for undergraduate students to lead change at Anglia Ruskin University. While it is not obligatory to take part, it is a chance to help future students make decisions about what and where to study and help us improve the overall learning experience for current and future students. If you would like to opt out of taking the survey, you can do so at any stage that Ipsos MORI (the organisation that delivers the survey on behalf of the Office for Students) contacts you directly between January and April.

Your contact details are supplied by us to Ipsos MORI under the Office for Students’ authority on behalf of other Higher Education Funders. Your details are stored securely and all responses will be handled in accordance with data protection legislation. They will be used only for the purpose of the NSS and all details will be removed from Ipsos MORI’s computer systems when the project is completed in May. For more details on how your data is stored, please read the NSS privacy notice.

Am I eligible, and how do I take part?

There are a number of applicable criteria that help Ipsos MORI make the decision if you are eligible to take part in the survey. If you are taking a course that leads to undergraduate credits or qualifications, and that runs for more than one year full-time (or its part-time equivalent), you will be surveyed in your final year of study. For students whose final year cannot be easily predicted (such as those on more flexible part-time programmes) will usually be surveyed in their fourth year of study. Students who withdraw from their course during their final year are also likely to be included, and those who have repeated a year or have changed their course arrangement will be surveyed. For more information on eligibility, please see the guidance notes.

You will be contacted initially by email, and if Ipsos MORI get no response they will then contact you by phone, so please ensure that you have notified us of any changes to your contact details by [month], otherwise you won’t be contacted to take part in the survey. Once you have completed the survey, you will not be contacted again. You can also access the survey through or tap the tile on the ARU app.

What is ‘inappropriate influence’?

‘Inappropriate influence’ is where a student is influenced by their university/college or another party to respond in their survey in a way that does not reflect their true opinion. It is important that all student feedback in the NSS is honest and constructive so that we can improve our students’ experience. If you believe that someone has tried to inappropriately influence your survey responses, please contact and

What happens when the survey closes?

As the NSS is a predominantly quantitative survey, the results are analysed at a high, aggregated level. Survey results for Anglia Ruskin University and all other Higher Education institutions are published on the Office for Students website and the Unistats website at both institutional and subject level. We are also sent this data and other unpublished data, and we analyse this in order to make improvements to the student experience at both university and subject levels.

Where can I find more information?

You can find more information on the NSS on the Student Survey website - If you have a question about the NSS that is not answered on the website, please email or

Charity donations

For every completed survey, Anglia Ruskin will donate £2 to one of the following charities, chosen by Students' Union Executive Committee: