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International Student Barometer: Groningen good value for money

Twice a year, the University asks all its international students to fill in a questionnaire to help us get a better idea of our performance in the areas of learning, living, arrival facilities and support. This International Student Barometer is a good way to gauge the feelings of our international students, and, where necessary and possible, introduce improvements to our range.

The results of the last International Student Barometer were again very promising – in comparison to other Dutch research universities and universities of applied science, the University of Groningen is on average in second place for the aspects mentioned above. International students are very happy with the content of the curriculum, the knowledge transfer (in English) by highly qualified lecturers, the openness with which students are in general approached by the lecturers, the sports facilities and above all the safety of the city. The official Welcoming Ceremony, which is organized twice a year, is also praised highly, as is the way that students are introduced to the institution and the city. Organizations like ESN are very popular, and the service provided by the International Student Desk and the faculty helpdesks also gained good scores in the questionnaire.

Just as at the other Dutch universities and universities of applied science, it appears that students have certain expectations about the quality of the catering facilities, which are not always met. This is partly due to the fact that the Netherlands has a ‘cheese sandwich’ mentality, thus usually favours a quick lunch. Criticism was also expressed over the price/quality ratio of the housing on offer – something, incidentally, that also applies to the other Dutch institutions, and certainly also to Dutch students. It goes without saying that we will continue to work on these matters. What is noticeable is that once an international student is installed in an international student house, he or she is full of praise for the pleasant contacts with other international students. One of the comments in this International Student Barometer summed it all up in two words: ‘Groningen rocks!’

Alumni Barometer

In addition to the International Student Barometer, the University of Groningen started an Alumni Barometer in April this year. In this survey our alumni were asked questions about their experiences as a student at our institution and about their career to date. The results of this survey will help us improve the international study experience of current and future students at our university, and will improve alumni relations. By the middle of 2009 the results of this first Alumni Barometer will be known.

Last modified:12 March 2020 10.09 p.m.