Content Types

Student Experience of Learning Resources

This spotlight focuses on the student experience of learning resources at Queen Mary. It contains the resources and results of the investigations and research carried out by the Students’ Union and presented at the 2012 Student Experience Seminar.

Learning Resources is the topic of one of the areas (section 5) of the National Student Survey (NSS), which asks about library and IT resources and specialised equipment. In advance of the Student Experience Seminar 2012, QMSU undertook investigations looking in particular at the Library, Printing, eBooks and Journals, Course Packs and Lecture Capture. The results of which are presented in their report and in the videos of some of the students’ comments.

Download the Student Experience Seminar 2012 QMSU Report on Learning Resources (pdf)

Library and Printing

In the following video, students from QMUL talk about several resource related issues connecting with the library and printing.

The full report contains background information, survey results and further quotes. The recommendations are given below.

Library recommendations

  • Run a trial blocking Facebook on the first floor of the Mile End Library for a semester
  • Restrict locking of PCs to fifteen minutes
  • Invest in more computers, installed in smaller but more numerous groups around campus.
  • Allow students to book study rooms in other buildings, particularly in the exam term

Printing recommendations

  • Install more small printers dotted around campus instead of a few big ones
  • Set up print-only PCs which log students off after fifteen minutes
  • Switch to online top for up print and photocopying credit

e-Books and Journals

In the next video, the students talk about e-books and e-journals and the decisions to be made in terms of investment in different formats.


The recommendations in this section of the report are as follows:

  • Continue purchasing both books and eJournals
  • Work on making students aware of what is available and how to access it
  • Include links to articles in online reading lists

Course Packs

The next topic that was considered was that of course packs (the packs of material, e.g. photocopies of readings and articles, which are often provided for some modules) particularly in light of the issues of cost and the increased student fees.


The recommendations regarding course packs are:

  • Continue posting readings online
  • Provide printed Course Packs for modules for which there is no suitable alternative (ie no cases & materials, anthology etc)
  • Make them mandatory
  • Provide them out of fee income

Lecture Capture

Lecture Capture at Queen Mary is expanding under the Q-Review system and after a successful pilot stage the system is being rolled out to an increasing number of lecture halls, in addition to personal capture systems for academics. The students’ comments and the Students’ Union’s recommendations from their report (given below) add to the discussions and debates on the technology currently taking place on campus.


  • Clarify issues around copyright and privacy
  • Explore other avenues to address attendance issues
  • Q-Review should be used as default, with staff given the option to opt-out if they want to
  • The College should agree that recordings will not be used for performance management

General Comments

We end with a short video of some more general comments on learning resources at university in the age of increased tuition fees in the UK.

The videos and recommendations outlined above provide an overview of some of the topics presented and discussed at the seminar. Full details, including survey results and discussion are included in the full report.


The Annual Student Experience Seminar is organised by David Andrew, Head of Academic Practice and by Queen Mary’s Students’ Union (QMSU).

The Students’ Union report was prepared by

  • Oscar Williamson, VP Education & Welfare
  • Oliver Brown, Middle Years Rep
  • Alexandre Schpektor, Humanities & Social Science Faculty Rep
  • Karishma Chouglay, Science & Engineering Faculty Rep
  • Nicolas Meier, First Year & Foundation Rep
  • Nikita Patel, Final Year Rep

and with special thanks to Philip Gilks.