Student communication and engagement

The University carries out extensive formal and informal communication and engagement with its students as part of its commitment to ‘students as partners’.

Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington conducts extensive communication and engagement with its students, reflecting the University’s commitment in its Strategic Plan to students as partners.

There are many formal avenues for communication and engagement with students and many students also engage informally with academic and professional staff throughout the University.

Ngā Kīwai o te Kete—Student Engagement Framework

The Student Engagement Framework has been developed to support our work with students as partners. It builds on the University’s Strategic Plan, and reflects our Te Tiriti Statute, and Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI) Framework.

The framework establishes the vision, values, and objectives of student engagement within the University. The vision of the framework is to create a culture of collaboration—based on genuine respect, transparency, and inclusion—to achieve our strategic direction.

The Framework has six objectives:

  • Support our strategic vision and honour Te Tiriti o Waitangi.
  • Develop a culture of respectful and valued engagement.
  • Foster equitable, diverse, and inclusive practice.
  • Develop student capability for leadership.
  • Keep students connected and informed.
  • Monitor and review partnership progress.

Academic student representation

There is formal student academic representation on a range of boards and committees. These include:

  • University Council and Council sub-committees
  • Academic Board
  • Academic Committee
  • Learning and Teaching Committee
  • Faculty Boards
  • Faculty Learning and Teaching Committees
  • Class Representatives.

There are many avenues for student feedback including student evaluations coordinated by the Centre for Academic Development to ensure that our learning and teaching is effective, the opportunity for feedback from students when we change or add a course and formal feedback processes that are carried out once in every three offerings of a course.

Student services representation

Students are formally included in the many forums that make decisions about student services through representation from a range of groups including VUWSA, Ngāi Tauira, PGSA, V‑ISA (International), Pasifika Students Council, and Disabled Students Association. These forums include:

Regular engagement forums

Formal academic and student services representative structures are complemented by regular one-to-one meetings between student leaders and university leaders. These include meetings between various members of VUWSA, Ngāi Tauira, PGSA, V‑ISA (International), and the Pasifika Students Council and the Vice-Chancellor, Provost, Chief Operating Officer, Vice-Provost (Research), Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic), Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Māori), Assistant Vice-Chancellor (Pasifika), Assistant Vice-Chancellor (International), Director Student Academic Services, Director Student and Campus Living, and the Dean of Faculty of Graduate Research.

There is a weekly meeting between the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic) and the Director of Student Academic Services with representatives of all of the above student groups as well as representatives from the Victoria University of Wellington Law Students’ Society, Chinese Students Association, Disabled Students Association and the student members of the University Council. A senior member of the University’s communications team attends to ensure key messages from the meeting are disseminated to students via university channels.

University staff attend the student-led and organised Student Assembly as invited.

The University’s Pandemic Committee has student representation and there have been regular meetings throughout 2020 in response to COVID-19. Other committees with student representation include:

Specific consultation is undertaken with students on strategic university initiatives with recent examples including the development of the University’s Sexual Harassment Response Policy and Procedures, Digital Roadmap, Students Services Programme and the Strategic Plan.

Staff and students also work in partnership on civic engagement activities with examples including Sustainability Week, Leadership Week and Matariki.

Student Surveys

The University regularly surveys students to help guide decision making.

Regular surveys include:

  • Getting Started, which is run for new students in Trimester 1
  • The Have Your Say is sent to all enrolled students
  • The International Student Barometer is run every two years.

Training for students

Students are offered university-funded and delivered training including:

  • Responding to disclosures of sexual harm—for Residential Assistants and VUWSA
  • Active Bystander Intervention—for Residential Assistants
  • Online modules, co-created with students, on Respectful Relationships (covering Healthy Relationships, Consent, Unacceptable Behaviour, Active Bystander Intervention, Pathways for reporting and support) for all first-year students
  • Tutor training programmes.

University communications to students

The University communicates with students across a range of channels, including:

Email—the student newsletter Whītiki is emailed fortnightly and emails are sent regularly to specific groups of students and to University accommodation residents and their whānau.

Website—including the current students hub, the MyView blog site and platforms such as CareerHub, Abintegro, and LibCal where students can access resources and sign up to workshops and events.

Social Media—including the University Facebook and Instagram pages and social media channels run by Faculties, student services, student representative groups and University halls of residence.

Posters and signage


Digital screens—on all our campuses

Text messages—used in emergencies or exceptional circumstances

University responses to Salient

Contact Centre outward call campaigns—in specific circumstances

University’s response to sexually harmful behaviour

The University is committed to supporting a learning environment that is free from sexually harmful behaviour.

Read more about the University's response to sexually harmful behaviour.