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    Nationwide student survey suggests Gold Coast the most ‘satisfying’ place to study architecture

    Nicholas Rider

    The architecture undergraduate course offered at Griffith University’s Gold Coast campus provides the highest overall quality of educational experience in the country.

    That’s according to the recent Student Experience Survey (SES), conducted by the federal government and administered by the Social Research Centre across Australia which asked current students to provide feedback about their learning experience at their chosen university.

    Griffith ranked top of the Architecture & Urban Environments, Building & Construction category on all but one of the ‘Quality Indicators for Learning and Teaching (QILT)’ within the SES, receiving the best feedback from students on ‘teaching quality’, ‘learner engagement’, ‘student support’ and ‘skills development’.

    Griffith’s ‘overall quality of educational experience’ received a score of 86.4 out of 100 and, interestingly, outstripped some of Australia’s largest and most prolific architecture schools, including RMIT University (79.9%), Queensland University of Technology (77.5%), University of New South Wales (75.2%), University of Sydney (73.2%), University of Technology Sydney (74.2%) and Curtin University (71.5%).

    Bond University (83.7%) and University of Newcastle (83%) came in second and third respectively, Bond ranking particularly well on ‘learning resources’ and Newcastle doing well in its ‘teacher quality’ thanks no doubt to its staff roster that includes AIA Gold Medallists Richard Leplastrier and Peter Stutchbury, Kerry Clare and Lindsay Clare of Clare Design, and Lawrence Nield (Studio Nield, previously founding principal Bligh Voller Nield).

    The University of Melbourne, recently named the 19 best university architecture faculty in the world by Quacquarelli Symonds, was not ranked by the QILT because less than 25 students participated in the survey.

    It should also be said that the Architecture and Building category incorporates areas of study outside of architecture, including urban design and regional planning, landscape architecture and interior and environmental design, building science and technology, building construction management, building surveying and building construction economics.

    The national average for overall quality of educational experience across all undergraduate courses is 76.3 per cent, meaning that nine Australian architecture faculties are above the national average and seven are below.

    The SES is funded by the Australian Government Department of Education and Training and in 2016 was administered by the Social Research Centre. 

    Visit the QILT website for more information on how Australian architecture faculties performed on all indicators. 

    Overall quality of educational experience rankings:

    University Overall Experience No. of responses
    Griffith University 86.4%  220
    Bond University 83.7%  98
    University of Newcastle 83.0%  223
    Deakin University 81.8% 198
    University of South Australia 81.8%  340
    RMIT University 79.9% 911
    Monash University 78.2% 280
    QLD University of Technology 77.5% 640
    University of New South Wales 75.2% 795
    University of Technology Sydney 74.3% 591
    The University of Sydney 73.2%  411
    Curtin University 71.5% 548
    University of Canberra 70.8% 161
    University of Tasmania 70.7% 133
    University of Western Australia 62.6% 230
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