Information for Students

Working for Quality Education

City University is committed to providing quality education. To make quality education a reality requires the help of staff and students to build a "quality culture" and to contribute to plans and activities to improve education.

The contribution of students is often thought of as voicing out problems and complaints, like dissatisfied clients of a bank. If there are complaints your teachers certainly want to know, but students can make a more positive contribution than this. Successful learning is the heart of successful education. Students are in the best position to know what is working well for them as learners, and what is not working. Students can help ensure that good practice is continued and extended and that learning issues are identified and solved.

The University has created many opportunities to bring students into our quality culture. These opportunities exist at the individual course level, at the programme and department level, and at the College/School and University level.

Quality Education for Courses

The building blocks for your university education are individual courses. Students can help improve learning in courses by responding carefully to surveys of course quality, teaching evaluations, and by discussing issues with their teachers.

When you are asked to comment on your learning experience it is helpful to remember that the quality of a course is not the same as the quality of in-class teaching. Course quality is based on several components:

  • Course content (often called the curriculum)
  • Course materials and resources (notes, textbooks, e-learning materials, library resources, equipment)
  • In-class delivery by the teacher (lectures, tutorials, laboratories, etc)
  • Assessment of student work in the course (projects, coursework, examinations, etc)
  • Out-of-class learning opportunities provided by the teacher and department
As you think about the quality of the components ask yourself:
  • Is it clear what students are expected to learn in the course?
  • Are these "learning outcomes" appropriate?
  • Will the course help students to achieve the desired outcomes?
  • Do students get the help and feedback they need, when they need it?
  • Are the exams and coursework good at assessing the desired outcomes?
If you become a class representative, you have a special role in understanding and expressing student views. Take the time and trouble to talk to fellow students. Try to help your teachers communicate better with the class. Take full advantage of any meetings with staff to talk about courses and your programme.

Quality Education for Programmes and Departments

Some students are asked to represent student views on departmental committees responsible for programmes, or on other staff-student consultative committees. These meetings are often the most important occasion when student views will be heard and actions can be decided to improve education at CityU. If you are a student representative, find out how these committees work in your department.

At the department level the issues raised go beyond the quality of courses. The agenda for department committees might include:

  • The structure of programmes - the set of courses that lead to an award
  • Support for student learning in the programme
  • Non-compulsory courses for Gateway education and skills
  • Out-of-class educational opportunities for students
  • Internships, placement and careers
But the criteria for quality stay the same. Are the learning outcomes clear and appropriate? Does the programme and other learning opportunities help achieve the outcomes? Are students able to get the help they need?

The issues can become quite complex, so before the meeting look at the agenda and go prepared. If you don't understand the issue, ask your teachers about it, or talk to the general office staff. Talk to fellow students so that you can reflect their views. At the meeting speak up, and listen carefully to others when they speak.

College/School and University Committees

Many College/School and university academic committees include student members. These decision-making committees are the framework of the University's system of academic "governance". A committee will have a secretary and a chairman and you can expect to receive an agenda, committee papers, and meeting minutes.

There are advantages and disadvantages in the formal way these committees operate. As a newcomer it can be difficult to make a contribution, but you have some advantages. Student views are always listened to very carefully and the chairman will encourage students to speak up. Since you have a formal agenda and papers you can prepare for the meeting. If you don't understand the issues, go and see the committee secretary; your enquires will be welcome.

Tasks for Student Leaders

Student leaders - programme-year representatives, departmental society chairs, and the Students' Union and CUPA executives - have special responsibilities to ensure that students are able to take full advantage of opportunities to get involved in improving educational quality at CityU.

Students rely on their leaders to keep open channels for students to communicate their views, to make sure that reliable people are appointed to committees to represent students, to help these representatives to get prepared for meetings, and to follow up on the issues.

Getting Help

The University wants to make its quality assurance system work for students. Help us improve education at CityU. You may find the following contacts useful to seek help or further information:

Name Telephone Email
For matters relating to quality assurance
General Enquiries (PROVT) 3442 6705 pdmak@cityu.edu.hk
For matters relating to activities organized by the Student Development Services (SDS)
SDS General Enquiries 3442 8090 sds@cityu.edu.hk
For matters relating to teaching and learning activities, please contact the relevant college/school/department general office.

Your programme leader and teachers will assist you as much as possible in getting involved with our quality culture.