Feedback on programmes

What students should know about sharing their opinions during an academic programme review.

Academic Programme Reviews

Academic programme reviews focus on the quality of a set of courses within a qualification or School. They might focus on the quality of the graduate and post-graduate courses within a subject, for example, such as chemistry, physics, English language or law. The specific areas examined in a programme review include the content and structure of the curriculum, assessment practices, learning activities and the programme’s connections to research.

Student input is important

Students are the most important stakeholders when it comes to teaching and learning at the University. Students have considerable knowledge about what works for them as learners and their input is vital in realising and developing good teaching and learning.

There are different ways to be involved

Send us a written submission on one or two pages of A4 paper or participate in the focus group and discuss your ideas directly with the members of the review panel. If you would prefer to just talk to the review panel—rather than provide a review submission—that’s fine. Just send Rob from the Academic Office your contact details or alternatively, let VUWSA know at

VUWSA also provide a confidential student survey for each programme review. Each student in a programme will get sent a link to complete a survey well before the panel meets. See which reviews are happening in 2023.

Your submission is confidential

None of the programme staff or management team of the programme will read your submission or attend any of the student meetings with the panel.

These are the areas the panel want to hear about

The following questions may guide you in writing a submission or responding to questions of the panel members:

  • What are the key strengths or weaknesses of the programme?
  • How engaging are the course materials and content?
  • How well do your study experiences match with your initial expectations of the programme?
  • Are you happy with the available study spaces and resources, cf. the library, lecturing rooms, computer rooms?
  • How well does the programme support all students to succeed?
  • How does the programme respond to the diverse cultures of students?
  • To what extent does it help realise the principles of Te Tiriti o Waitangi through its presentation and delivery?
  • How well is assessment and grading managed?
  • What suggestions do you how for how the programme could improve?

The review panels welcome submissions from students and really appreciate hearing about specific examples of student experiences along with student views of what a programme is doing well or could do better.

The people on the review panel

Review panels are made up of experts from other universities. There is usually at least one academic from another University in New Zealand, and an academic from an Australian University. There may also be an academic with expertise in te ao Māori. The panel is chaired by a senior lecturer from another faculty within the University.

Your input helps create the final report

After the review has taken place, the panel prepares a report in which they summarise their findings on the quality of the programme. The final report includes specific commendations and recommendations for the programme.

Apply for the focus group or email your written submission to Robert Stratford.

Robert profile picture

Dr Robert Stratford

Manager, Quality and Policy
Academic Office