Students: Experience, engagement and communities

This report draws together 10 case studies of institutional practice in embedding public engagement practice in the student experience through formal and informal learning routes. The examples are various and cover all levels of provision from undergraduate to postgraduate research. We see examples of genuine benefit to students, researchers and partners.

The report provides a number of in-depth examples and highlights a range of issues including that:

  • Public engagement was identified as a feature in the approach of all those that participated in the research.
  • Higher education institutions recognised the importance of student experience and this has become central to the institutional message to prospective students, parents and staff.
  • Public engagement with teaching and learning is still evolving. Public engagement with research was more likely to involve postgraduate students, while public engagement with teaching and learning activity was more likely to involve undergraduate students.
  • There are numerous ways in which institutions, of all types, work with their communities and many of these have been brought into the student experience. Developing and delivering this type of provision requires committed capacity at the right level to manage the sometimes complex relationships with external partners.
  • The evaluation of activities in the public engagement with learning and teaching space is challenging, and the issues highlighted resonated with work which explores this issue in public engagement with research.