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Determining student satisfaction: An economic analysis of the National Student Survey

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  • Lenton, Pamela

Abstract

The UK National Student Survey (NSS) represents a major resource, never previously used in the economics literature, for understanding how the market signal of quality in higher education works. In this study, we examine the determinants of the NSS overall student satisfaction score across eleven subject areas for 121 UK universities between 2007 and 2010. Using a unique panel data set and estimating random effects and fixed effects models, we find large differences in NSS scores across subjects and across different groups of universities, which implies that the raw scores should not be used as a method of ranking. Additionally, the student–staff ratio and student employability are strong influencers of student satisfaction; both of which suggest that a policy which places emphasis on student support, personal development and employability skills will yield an advantage in the higher education marketplace.

Suggested Citation

  • Lenton, Pamela, 2015. "Determining student satisfaction: An economic analysis of the National Student Survey," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 47(C), pages 118-127.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:ecoedu:v:47:y:2015:i:c:p:118-127
    DOI: 10.1016/j.econedurev.2015.05.001
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Chevalier, Arnaud & Conlon, Gavan, 2003. "Does It Pay to Attend a Prestigious University?," IZA Discussion Papers 848, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    2. Soo, Kwok Tong & Elliott, Caroline, 2010. "Does price matter? Overseas students in UK higher education," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 29(4), pages 553-565, August.
    3. John McCormack & Carol Propper & Sarah Smith, 2014. "Herding Cats? Management and University Performance," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 124(578), pages 534-564, August.
    4. Smith, Jeremy & McKnight, Abigail & Naylor, Robin, 2000. "Graduate Employability: Policy and Performance in Higher Education in the UK," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 110(464), pages 382-411, June.
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    Cited by:

    1. Marina Della Giusta & Antonia Fernandez & Sarah Jewell, 2017. "Happy at University? Student Well-being and the Value of Higher Education," Economics & Management Discussion Papers em-dp2017-01, Henley Business School, Reading University.
    2. Pamela Lenton, 2014. "Personality Characteristics, Educational Attainment and Wages: An Economic Analysis Using the British Cohort Study," Working Papers 2014011, The University of Sheffield, Department of Economics.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Educational economics; Higher education; Fixed effects; Random effects; Student satisfaction;

    JEL classification:

    • I20 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - General
    • I23 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Higher Education; Research Institutions
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity

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