Let us know about your time at Bolton

If you are an undergraduate student in your final year at the University of Bolton, here is your chance to have your say and take part in the National Student Survey (NSS)

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What is NSS?

The National Student Survey is taken by final-year undergraduates at universities across the UK. Universities and students’ unions use the feedback to see how they can improve, and prospective students can use the results to help them make study choices. The survey is administered by Ipsos Mori, an independent research agency, and participants remain anonymous at all times.

The NSS is a high-profile, annual survey that is conducted to almost over one million students across the UK. The survey has been conducted since 2005 – aimed at final year undergraduate students to help shape the future of their course at the university level. The survey allows you to respond to several questions, regarding various aspects of your time at university with the opportunity to make both positive and negative comments on your experience – all responses remain strictly anonymous and no student will be identified.

Why it’s important to participate

The University of Bolton strongly believes that your voice, the student's voice is massively important to us.

You will know that we have course reps, Staff-Student Liaison Committees, and student representatives on many of the committees across the university. To ensure that your voice is heard at a national level all University of Bolton students, whether, on a Bachelor degree, foundation degree, or Higher National Diploma should have a chance to reflect and feedback on their learning experience over the past2 or 3 years on their programme of study. This will provide us with important information on what we did well, areas for improvement and ensure that these developments are in place for future and current students, supporting quality and assurance and accountability. The National Student Survey (NSS) is the best way you can do this!

All students, including current and prospective students, benefit from the NSS. Since the NSS provides information to enhance the student learning experience – Universities use the results to develop their courses and facilities and contributes to the public accountability of higher education.

More information

The survey asks eligible students, who are mainly at the end of their studies, 27 single choice core questions relating to various aspects of their course.

These questions relate to the following aspects of the student experience:

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

In addition, if you are studying NHS subject courses, you will be asked questions about your placements. If you are on a degree apprenticeship or a higher apprenticeship at levels 6 or 7, you may be asked some questions about your training programme.

Open comments

You will have the opportunity to give positive and/or negative comments on your experience as a whole. If comments are provided, these will be passed on anonymously to the University to help us identify where our strengths lie and also how we may make improvements. Please note that the open-ended questions are optional and there is a maximum word limit of 4,000 characters. Students may also choose to send additional comments by email to Ipsos MORI at thestudentsurvey@ipsos.com.

The responses are invaluable for the University of Bolton because they give feedback directly from students themselves about what the learning experience has been like for you completing your courses in 2021. The University and Students’ Union can then use this anonymous data internally to identify areas of strength and weakness, make changes if appropriate and improve the overall student experience.

To preserve your anonymity and that of others, you are asked not to make comments that:

  • Could enable them to be identified as an individual;
  • Name individuals; or
  • Make references that could identify another individual, e.g. a course leader or head of department.
  • Your comments will be anonymised and named individuals removed.

For the 2021 survey, the Office for Students and the UK funding and regulatory bodies have added a new set of questions in the NSS questionnaire, to ask students about specific aspects of their experience during the Covid-19 pandemic. You can choose whether to answer these questions and submit feedback on this topic after you have completed the core questionnaire.

It is published (anonymously) on the Discover Uni website which allows comparisons across higher education courses and universities/colleges to help prospective students make informed choices about where and what to study. The OfS publishes overall results on its website which can be downloaded. However anonymised open comments data is not published and is only seen by your university/college. Students are being invited to complete the 2021 NSS between January 6 and April 30, 2021.

Final-year students and equivalent:

  • Students expected to be in their final year.
  • Students on flexible programmes where the final year cannot be predicted, after they are expected to have undertaken more than one full-time equivalent (FTE) and not before their fourth academic year of study.
  • Students on Initial Teacher Training courses.
  • Students studying NHS subject courses.
  • All students studying on directly funded, prescribed Higher Education courses.
  • Students are included in the 2021 survey population if they are expected to complete their course between 1 February 2021 and 31 January 2022 inclusive.

The following are NOT eligible to complete the NSS:

  • Students on programmes that do not lead to undergraduate qualifications or credits.
  • Students on a course lasting one year or one FTE or less.
  • Any students who were eligible in the NSS 2020 (whether or not they responded) and who remain at the same provider, except if they were on the NSS Pilot 2020.
  • Students under the age of 16.

Once you have completed your survey you will be able to enter an online survey prize draw



£250 Amazon Voucher



£50 Amazon Voucher



£30 Amazon Voucher

The deadline for entering the prize draw is midnight on 30th April 2021

Claim a FREE hot drink

Any student that presents the completion e-mail from the NSS is entitled to claim any free regular hot drink from one of our café's at the main Campus, Institute of management or Queens Campus. This offer will be available until the end of S1 2021/22.

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How did Bolton score in the last survey?

In 2020, almost 91% of students said that their lecturers were good at explaining the subjects of their courses, which was above the national average of 87%.

Also, 84% of Bolton students said they were satisfied with the quality of their courses which puts Bolton in one of the top 4 universities in the UK for student satisfaction according to the Complete University Guide.



We are proud to put you the student first


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Help Centre

We have the answers to your questions, find all the advice and support in one place.

Part of the University of Bolton Group

Bolton college
Alliance learning
Anderton centre2
RiSE pos rgb logo
TEF Silver