Analysis of 2021 Differing Perceptions of Quality of Learning: QAA Collaborative Project | Report

Harriet Dunbar-Morris, Mohammed Asif Ali, Nicholas Brindley, Kirsten Farrell-Savage, Lucy Sharp, Melita Panagiota Sidiropoulou, Karen Heard-Laureote, Dean Lymath, Raheel Nawaz, Chrissi Nerantzi, Vishnupriya Prathap, Alison Reeves, Sarah Speight, Carmen Tomas

Research output: Book/ReportCommissioned report

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This report presents the findings of a QAA funded collaborative project that explored differing perceptions of quality of learning of ethnically diverse students at Level 4 and Level 5 on specific programmes (Engineering, Computing, Business and Adult Nursing) to gain further insights into their perceptions as well as their learning, teaching and assessment experiences during the pandemic (academic year 2020/21) aiming to inform practice and policy.

Participation in the research required participants to complete a survey questionnaire and/or attend an online focus group.

This was a collaborative project, and the project team involved members from four universities (the University of Portsmouth, Manchester Metropolitan University, Solent University, and the University of Nottingham). The University of Portsmouth was the lead partner and was responsible for the analysis of the survey and focus group data.

The total number of students participating from all four institution was 835 who filled out the survey. Nine focus groups were organised with 33 students. The key findings are the following as articulated in the report (Dunbar-Morris et al., 2021):

1. Experience of factors related to wellbeing falls short of expectations

2. Value of recordings of teaching materials was high

3. The contribution of group work to learning was perceived as low

4. Overall satisfaction with teaching and learning varied considerably by ethnicity

5. Engagement is higher on campus than online, and overall engagement varies by ethnicity

6. Health science had a better experience than other subject areas.
Original languageEnglish
PublisherQuality Assurance Agency
Commissioning bodyThe Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education
Number of pages157
Publication statusPublished - 28 Oct 2021


  • student experience
  • quality of learning
  • Covid-19 and higher education
  • BAME students
  • attaintment gap
  • online learning
  • blended learning


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