Project details

Full project title: Student Accommodation Survey

Duration: June 2001 - February 2002

Funded by: UWE

Project leads: Derek Worthing, Sue Wood

Project summary

The project has been commissioned by Student Accommodation Services at UWE. It comprises an investigation into how students perceive SAS in terms of the quality of service, and of the accommodation provided.


It is taking place in a context of increasing competition between universities and a perception of rising expectations of students and their parents. The more particular reasons for carrying out the work relate to good business practice, in the sense of getting feedback from clients, and the potential redevelopment plans at the Frenchay campus, which might provide 1000-3000 bed spaces.


The project is in three stages. The first two stages focus on opinions about the service provided by SAS, and on aspirations, while the third is about the experience of living in the accommodation. Stage one consists of a questionnaire on the accommodation allocation process, sent with all the allocation letters in late June/July.

Stage two has two parts, a questionnaire on the deposit return (sent out with the deposit return letters in August) and a questionnaire, in the autumn, to parents of students who have recently moved into university accommodation.

Stage three involves ‘focus groups’ comprising of seven student ‘households’ (5-6 students each), chosen to include different accommodation types, student characteristics (eg international), and locations. These groups are organised in a semi-structured way, with the topics chosen as a result of the responses received at the earlier stages.

Close liaison with the client at all stages is an important feature of this project. Reporting to the client is at the end of each of the stages indicated above, and wider dissemination of the results will take place through journal/conference papers.