Sheffield Students’ Union claims top spot in National Student Survey

The University of Sheffield’s Students' Union has been rated the best in Britain, according to the latest National Student Survey (NSS).

Students' Union Officers

The University has also ranked top in the region and 4th in the Russell Group - the association of leading UK research-intensive universities – and maintained an overall satisfaction score of 90 per cent for the second year running.

Satisfaction at Sheffield has improved since 2011 in 13 out of the 22 core survey questions with 89 per cent of students satisfied with the quality of teaching on their course, 89 per cent with the learning resources available to them, 83 per cent with the personal development they received and 82 per cent with the academic support provided to them.

24 out of the University's 45 subjects received an overall satisfaction score of 90 per cent or above, with a further 20 subjects gaining a satisfaction score between 80-89 per cent.

The ranking for the Students’ Union is the first time ever the annual large-scale survey of undergraduates has featured a question on student satisfaction with Student Unions and the overall satisfaction score of 95 per cent is significantly above the sector average of 66 per cent.

The news comes just a week after the University’s success in the QS World University Rankings in which it was named the best institution in Yorkshire and the Humber and placed 66th out of more than 2,500 institutions across the world, as well as being one of just 18 in the UK to be named in its prestigious top 100.

It also follows a year of significant achievement across the board for both staff and students in which the University was named times Higher Education University of the year, top of the Russell group and top of the Yorkshire and the Humber region by the Times Higher Education student survey and the University's services being rated the best in the country by an independent students' satisfaction survey.

University's NSS highlights

  • Fourth in the Russell Group
  • Top in the region
  • Overall satisfaction score of 90 per cent
  • 24 out of the University's 45 subjects received an overall satisfaction score of 90 per cent or above
  • Satisfaction at Sheffield has improved since 2011 in 13 out of the 22 core survey questions
  • Students' Union voted best in Britain with an overall satisfaction score of 95 per cent

Vice-Chancellor Professor Keith Burnett, said: "It's wonderful to know that our students continue to be amongst the most satisfied in the country and that the Students’ Union, which is currently undergoing a £20 million refurbishment to further improve facilities, has been rated the best in the country.

"The news follows this month's announcement that the University of Sheffield has been named the best institution in Yorkshire and the Humber in the QS World University rankings, and is a testament to our commitment to providing an outstanding student experience, excellent facilities and world-class teaching and support."

Abdi Suleiman, President of the Students’ Union, said: "Our Students' Union has succeeded in creating a community capable of winning changes from the university and beyond, adding to an active student experience and contributing to the local society, which is why 95 per cent of University of Sheffield students genuinely appreciate the Students’ Union’s contribution to their time at the University."

Additional information

National Student Survey

The NSS covers nearly all final-year undergraduates studying for higher education qualifications at HEIs (including the independent University of Buckingham) and FECs in England and Wales, HEIs in Northern Ireland and 14 institutions in Scotland (listed below). Students on initial teacher training courses funded by the Training and Development Agency for Schools, and students studying NHS-funded subjects are also included. The threshold for publication is that at least 23 students from each course must have responded at each institution, and that these represent at least half the students eligible to participate.

The NSS data is available on the Unistats web-site:

The University of Sheffield

With nearly 25,000 students from 125 countries, the University of Sheffield is one of the UK’s leading and largest universities. A member of the Russell Group, it has a reputation for world-class teaching and research excellence across a wide range of disciplines.

The University of Sheffield has been named University of the Year in the Times Higher Education Awards for its exceptional performance in research, teaching, access and business performance. In addition, the University has won four Queen’s Anniversary Prizes (1998, 2000, 2002, 2007). These prestigious awards recognise outstanding contributions by universities and colleges to the United Kingdom’s intellectual, economic, cultural and social life. Sheffield also boasts five Nobel Prize winners among former staff and students and many of its alumni have gone on to hold positions of great responsibility and influence around the world.

The University’s research partners and clients include Boeing, Rolls Royce, Unilever, Boots, AstraZeneca, GSK, ICI, Slazenger, and many more household names, as well as UK and overseas government agencies and charitable foundations.

The University has well-established partnerships with a number of universities and major corporations, both in the UK and abroad. Its partnership with Leeds and York Universities in the White Rose Consortium has a combined research power greater than that of either Oxford or Cambridge.


For further information, please contact:

Shemina Davis
Acting Media Relations Manager
The University of Sheffield
0114 222 5339