Undergraduate Student Comment Themes and Categories
Coming up with a good categorisation structure for your student comments is always a challenge, and something we are constantly working on at Student Voice. Below we share our constantly evolving categorisation structure that currently encompasses 44 categories of student comment under 9 high level themes. The themes cover a wide range of teaching and student experience topics as well as transient issues such as strikes and COVID.
We can adopt such a comprehensive set of categories at Student Voice because our machine-learning powered classifiers automate the process but even if you are labelling by hand then hopefully the below will give you some inspiration.
Comments relating to how teaching is delivered, including type and variety of teaching sessions
Comments specifically relating to teaching staff, i.e. lecturers, professors, project supervisors, etc
Comments relating to quality of teaching delivered remotely and online
Comments about the specific content of the course, including module content, structure of the course etc
Comments relating to the amount of contact received
Comments relating to size of classes, number of students per staff member, student:staff ratios, etc
Comments surrounding the variety or choice of modules, including the procedure for choosing modules
Comments relating to placements or fieldwork (including clinical placements)
Comments relating to the availability of lecturers and other teaching staff, i.e. their office hours
Comments relating to communication between students and teaching staff
Comments surrounding the support a student receives here, including academic support, pastoral support and disability support
Comments relating to the personal tutor system
Comments relating to clarity of content, workload, course booklet, handbook
Comments relating to support and induction when students first join the university
General comments relating to organisation, administration or management of the course
General comments about the timetabling and scheduling of assignments
Comments relating to the amount of workload throughout the programme - including exam timetabling and spacing of deadlines
General comments about the year abroad / study abroad aspect of programmes.
Comments about the University's facilities in general - e.g. catering, buildings, sports facilities, accommodation etc.
Comments about the University's IT facilities, including network access, availability of computers, printers, etc
General comments about academia-related learning resources, e.g. lecture material, online material, or other general learning resources
Comments relating to any of the University's library facilities
General comments about the provision of / lack of available space for academic purposes
Comments relating to working with others on the course
Comments about careers prospects, employability, or the careers service at the University
Comments about the social / sporting activities outside academia, and related facilities.
General comments about student life overall
Comments about how the University has aided personal development of the student
Comments relating to accommodation
Comments about the campus, the city, or the location of the University
Comments about the cost of University or whether value for money is achieved
Comments relating to how the University has handled lockdown, including COVID-19 related mitigation and student support
Comments surrounding the change in graduation procedures / venues for the academic year
Comments surrounding the number of international students / lecturers in the University
Comments specifically relating to non-academic staff, i.e. administrative staff, support staff, etc
Comments relating to racist/other discriminatory incidences/culture/practices or their handling by the university
Comments relating specifically to impacts as a result of strike action by university employees
Comments relating to the 'type of student' at the Institution