Posted on Thursday, 04 April 2013 at 12pm
by Lifelong Learning Centre Staff.
As well as being a tutor teaching on Business programmes within the Lifelong Learning Centre I am also a student myself and am presently two years into a six year PhD.
My own research interests come from my working experiences in marketing and recruitment (a focus on meeting the needs of customers) and academia (a focus on sharing knowledge and expertise to improve the skills of others). Therefore when looking at defining an area of research I was keen to integrate these two broad areas. Following much debate and deliberation (and it must be said, going back to the drawing board!) I ultimately decided to look at the student quality experience of Higher Education (HE).
More specifically I am looking at by what measures HE students perceive and evaluate the quality of service they receive within a Higher Education Institution (HEI’s). As the HE market becomes more competitive, and tuition fees rise, learners are become more aware and vocal with their expectations. This had led to some arguing they should be seen as ‘customers of a university’ and their needs met as such. It is therefore increasingly important for HEI’s to have an understanding of these expectations and ensure, where possible, that they are taken into consideration.
My research will use established service quality models and apply these to the HE sector to examine student’s perceptions and expectations of the service they receive at their institution. It is hoped that the research will also link the impact of marketing and promotional discourse of a HEI and establish if these have any influence on the student’s perception of service quality within that institution.
I believe this ongoing study and research not only ensures that I am up to date with the latest thinking and developments in my subject area but also that I can empathise with the students I teach on their own academic ‘journey’. As we know HE study is often difficult and brings about its own challenges but is ultimately always rewarding!