Over the course of the last few months, it has become apparent that in order to help improve the environment around campus, student voices need to be heard. One bottom-up initiative is the Student Staff Liaison Committee (SSLC), where elected student representatives and faculty members meet to discuss any issues, concerns or praise they have about their course here at UEA.

Course reps are student volunteers who are elected by their peers and represent the views of those who are on their course. They feed back to their school and Student’s Union. By feeding back to those who can help make change around campus, course reps help to ensure UEA is the best it can be.

At the SSLC meetings, issues are raised such as assessment feedback, timetabling, contact hours and access to resources. It is lovely to hear about the successes of your school too, to hear about newly proposed academic courses and what aspects of your course or your school you enjoy.

Course reps are part of a large community of representatives, including School Convenors, Faculty Convenors and the uea(su) Undergraduate and Postgraduate officers.

HUM Faculty Convenor, Roo Pitt commented, “It’s really important for course reps to have their ear on the ground, module feedback is great but if we can tackle issues before it gets to that point, that’s even better.”

As a course rep you have the opportunity to make a change. In LDC alone, reps were able to feedback to new marking grids, a new course being proposed to begin in the next few years. Course reps and faculty members also worked alongside uea(su) to develop a survey about contact hours.

Being a course rep can also help you to develop your transferable skills such as team work, negotiation, diplomacy, problem solving as well as developing your confidence. Course reps are able to develop a rapport with staff and members of the faculty. Being a course representative or school convenor is also a qualifying activity for the UEA Award, a future initiative to help students develop their skills. 

Callum Perry, uea(su) Undergraduate Education Officer stated, “Hearing from students and students using their voice is hugely important – it’s why I got involved in uea(su). Representing the views of others is an amazing opportunity and you can really bring about change for the people around you. From influencing assessments on modules to challenging the diversity of reading lists, our Course Reps do amazing work and we love training, supporting and working with them.”