Student voice

All students at De Montfort University (DMU) and our collaborative partners are given the opportunity, and encouraged, to provide feedback on their educational experience. The views of students both individually and collectively help to inform university quality management systems.

There are a number of ways for students to make their views known and offer feedback on modules and programmes. The university provides an inclusive environment for student engagement irrespective of location, mode of study, teaching delivery or discipline.

The Student Charter, jointly produced by students, DMU and De Montfort Students’ Union (DSU) staff, articulates the commitment for listening and responding to the student voice.

Students can also make their views known informally by visiting student advice centres, through discussions with tutors and by contacting the DSU.

Find out more about the student voice in academic quality

This section provides information on the initiatives and activities that support the student voice in academic quality processes. It includes: student representation; student involvement in quality assurance and enhancement processes; and student satisfaction surveys. 

Programme handbook guidance is also available which provides draft text on student feedback processes and representation systems, for inclusion in programme or faculty handbooks.


  1. Student representation

    Students are engaged, both individually and collectively, as partners in the enhancement of their educational experience through student representation. The student representation structure aims to ensure that all students are represented.

    Partnership with De Montfort Students’ Union (DSU)

    The university and the De Montfort Students Union work in partnership to own and manage student representation. DSU Executive Officers are members of various university committees to ensure that the student voice is represented at all levels of university governance.

    Student voice and representation in academic quality processes

    Student representatives are involved with university and faculty level committees and academic quality processes such as validation and periodic review as full committee or panel members. The DSU website provides useful information about our student representation including how to find your course rep. DSU also have a range of useful resources to support course reps with their training needs.

    Student Voice Committees (SVCs) and Staff Student Consultative Committees (SSCCs)

    The SVCs/SSCCs are an important student voice mechanism. The remit of the SVC/SSCC is to engage students in the enhancement of their educational experience and are designed to give student representatives, normally course reps, the opportunity to convey student views on a range of issues relating to their courses. For example, this may include what is working well, areas for enhancement and discussing any proposed changes with staff. The SVC/SSCC operational guidance, and SVC/SSCC issues log help to ensure meetings are run efficiently and scheduled in line with the relevant PMB.

  2. Student participation in academic quality

    Students are involved in academic quality processes, both in terms of providing feedback which may be used to inform decisions regarding programmes of study, but also directly through representation as a panel member.


    Students play a key role in programme design and approval. New programme proposals are scrutinised by the relevant Programme Management Board (PMB), which includes student representation. Marketing staff seek students’ views on new programme proposals. A student representative is invited on to the validation panel (where unavailable, a member of the De Montfort Students’ Union (DSU) Executive will undertake this role). See validation guidance for student panel members.

    Periodic review

    Students and alumni are involved in five key ways during the periodic review process. Programme teams reflect on student views whilst writing their Self-Evaluation Document (SED) on which student commentary is also sought. A student representative is invited on to the review panel (where unavailable, a member of the DSU Executive will undertake this role). A group of students also meet with the panel on the day of review. See periodic review guidance for student panel members.

    Collaborative provision

    Student input is sought throughout all stages of collaborative partner approval and review. A member of the DSU Executive provides comment on the proposed new partners. A student representative is invited on to the validation or review panel (this will normally be member of the DSU Executive team).

    Curriculum modification

    Students are drivers of change. Feedback through student surveys and staff/student consultation can be one of the triggers for a programme leader to initiate change via the curriculum modification process. Changes can include revised assessments and weightings or learning outcomes. Any curriculum changes require support of the Programme Management Board or equivalent, and the wider faculty, including the Faculty Associate Professor (Quality).

    Training for students representatives

    Students and staff involved in academic quality assurance and enhancement processes have access to training and support provided by the university and the DSU.

  3. Student charter

    This charter has been created and is maintained jointly by DMU staff and students. It sets out commitments from the university to students, from students to the university, and from the Students’ Union to students.

    Starting with a blank sheet of paper, a group of students and staff set out the type of things they thought that they and the university should commit to. From teaching and learning, to support and university life, these ideas were refined into a single document.

    That document was then updated and approved by the University Leadership Board, De Montfort Students' Union and the governing body, to create the DMU Student Charter.

    The charter will be updated on a yearly basis, and is a guide to your responsibilities at DMU, and will help explain what the university should do for you.

    If you want to get involved with the development of the student charter, please email us for more information.

  4. Student satisfaction surveys

    A variety of mechanisms are employed to gather student feedback, including questionnaires and surveys. These are conducted both internally within De Montfort University, and externally across the higher education sector.

    DMU student surveys

    Student surveys conducted internally within DMU may include:

    External student surveys

    Strategic Planning Services (SPS) are responsible for managing the university’s involvement in most of the external surveys including:

    • Graduate Outcome Survey (contact SPS)
    • National Student Survey (NSS) for final year undergraduate students
    • Students at collaborative colleges graduating with a foundation degree will be asked to complete the NSS (contact SPS)
    • Postgraduate Taught Experience Survey (PTES) (contact SPS)
    • Postgraduate Research Experience Survey (PRES) (contact the Doctoral College)
    • UK Engagement Survey (UKES) (contact SPS)

    Use of survey data

    Where students’ views are captured by internal or external surveys, the data is used at the appropriate level within the university to inform improvement. Student feedback is captured at both module and programme level, feeding into the Programme Self-Assessment Report & Quality Improvement Plan (PSAR) and the Collaborative Provision Programme Appraisal & Enhancement (CP-PAE) retrospectively. These are considered by the Programme Management Board (PMB) and Faculty Academic Committee (FAC) with action plans devised as appropriate. Institutional level survey outcomes are used to inform debate and action at university committees.

  5. Guidance and forms

    All guidance and forms relating to the student voice in academic quality (available throughout this section of the site) are presented together here.

    General guidance

    Student Charter: Sets out commitments from the university to students, from students to the university, and from the De Montfort Students’ Union (DSU) to students.

    Module handbook template and programme handbook template: Designed to help standardise the content of programme and module handbooks, and the consistency of this content across different programmes and faculties, including guidance from key central departments. Example templates are provided for use as required.

    Student representation

    Student Voice Committee (SVC)/Staff Student Consultative Committee (SSVC) operational guidance: Provides operational guidance on the remit of SVCs/SSCCs, their delivery and constitution.

    SVC/SSCC issues log: The issues log can replace or be used in conjunction with SVC/SSCC meeting notes, for both SVCs/SSCCs which meet physically or electronically (e-SVCs/e-SSCCs).

    Student participation in academic quality

    Validation guidance for student panel members: Provides guidance for all student panel members on their roles and responsibilities in validation, outlining the aims, purpose and process of validation.

    Periodic review guidance for student panel members: Provides guidance for all student panel members on their roles and responsibilities in periodic review, outlining the aims, purpose and process of review.