Student Representation on Academic Issues

The University places great value on the opinions of its students and there are numerous opportunities for you to get involved to have your say and also to represent the views of other students.  Being a student representative is rewarding work and can help you develop useful skills such as communication skills, contribute to your personal development to include on your CV.  It can also give you a greater understanding of how the University works as well as enabling you to play a role in decision making in the department.  These opportunities are supplemented by a range of surveys and evaluations which you will be invited to participate in.

In Mechanical Engineering

We have a staff-student committee comprising of student representatives together with relevant academic staff. Getting involved will enable you to join in discussions and decision making, ranging across topics such as:

  •  student feedback on the quality of teaching
  •  inputs to the planning of curriculum changes
  • departmental/school services (e.g. hand-in arrangements, office opening times, study facilities, availability of personal tutors)
  •  improving channels of communication with students

The Committee normally meets twice during each semester and is able to act to resolve minor issues, or report significant issues arising from its deliberations to either the Departmental Teaching or Executive Committees as appropriate, or the Faculty of Engineering Student Forum, as appropriate.

At the beginning of the academic year, students are asked to volunteer for the role of course representative. Eight representatives are selected to serve on the Committee, usually two students each for years 1, 2 and 3, one student from year 4 and one student from postgraduate study.

The communication flow of information between the relevant committees is shown below:

student staff committee flow chart

In Mechanical Engineering the contact for the Staff/Student Committee is Miss Keira Sweet: k.sweet@sheffield.ac.uk

In the Faculty of Engineering

There are reserved places for students on a range of faculty-level committees within which you can get involved in:

  •  policy developments
  • student surveys
  • reviews of learning and teaching quality
  • design of new degree programmes and amendment of existing programmes
  •  reflections on external reviews of the University
  • Student Faculty forum

All Faculties have set up student fora to ensure that there is a consistent approach to student representation at Faculty level across the University. The student fora are informal meetings of student representatives and faculty officers, and provide an opportunity to:

  • consider the student perspective on Faculty-wide issues/initiatives
  • raise faculty-wide student issues of concern
  • raise unresolved issues from departmental Staff-Student Committees

The Faculty of Engineering has two student fora (undergraduate and postgraduate taught students and the other for postgraduate research students).  Included in the membership for the former are one undergraduate student from each department in the Faculty and one undergraduate student from Faculty multidisciplinary degrees. The UG/PGT forum meets twice each academic year; usually in November and April.

The main Faculty committee types are:

  • Faculty Executive Board
  • Faculty Academic Board
  • Faculty Learning and Teaching Committee

The number of student representatives on each committee varies but for more information on becoming a Faculty student representative please contact Learning and Teaching Services.