Using the Report Page

Using the SREQ website to generate a report: The reports based on the SREQ data are available to all staff and students of the University. The reports can be viewed online and also downloaded and printed out.

On the Results and Reports page you will be presented with four numbered steps to decide on the report you want and a table summarising the response rates and sample size. This table is also used to specify the data set for the SREQ report.

Step 1: Use the pull down menu to select the survey year you would like to view a report for.

Step 2: Choose a report type using the buttons at the top of the table. There are four types of report you can request:

This report summarizes the key SREQ data. It reports the SREQ factor scale responses. The data is reported in terms of university, college or faculty averages. Broad Agreement, Agreement and Disagreement percentages are also reported for these scales. (Report length: One page)
This is a summary of students' responses to each item on the SREQ. (Report length: three pages)
This is a detailed report of students' responses to each item on the SREQ. It includes a breakdown of scores for each value on the five-point response scale for every SREQ item. (Report Length: eight pages)
This report provides a good 'at a glance' picture of research student satisfaction. It uses both the "Broad Agreement" measure used in the national CEQ (the proportion of students who did not 'disagree' or 'strongly disagree' with each item) and the ''Agreement'' measure (the proportion of students who Agreed or Strongly Agreed with each item). (Report length: Three pages)

Step 3: Select which section of the University you are interested in. Click on the relevant heading in the table to specify the data set for the report. You can select a SREQ report for:

  • all University of Sydney students (by clicking on 'The University of Sydney')
  • a Faculty (by clicking on the faculty name)
  • a School/Department (revealed by clicking on the blue drop down menu on the right of faculty names)
  • a degree/course (revealed by clicking on the '+' on the left of faculty names)

The report you have requested will then be automatically generated. You can read the report on your screen, save as a PDF or print it out.

Additional information to assist in interpreting results is provided below.

If, after viewing the report, you would like to see a different level of report for the same data, or a report for a different part of the university, just use the back button on your internet explorer toolbar to return to the response rate and report table. You will then be able to order a new report.

Use the help button to return to this page at any time.

If you have any queries regarding the generation of SREQ reports, please contact Brad Ridout in the Institute for Teaching and Learning on 9351 3607.

THE SREQ FACTOR SCALES

The University of Sydney Student Research Experience Questionnaire (SREQ) is based upon the items included in the nationally administered Postgraduate Research Experience Questionnaire (PREQ). These items have been shown to cluster together to form factor scales: Supervision, Climate, Infrastructure, and Generic Skills. On the "Summary", "Detailed", and "Agreement" reports, the scale that each item relates to is marked by an acronym under the item number.

ASPECTS OF EACH SCALE

* Denotes a reversed (negatively scored) item.

The Supervision Scale (SUP). SREQ items 1, 5, 13, 18, 22, 26 & 33
This scale covers aspects of supervision including: supervision being available when needed; understanding by the supervisor(s) of difficulties; provision of additional information relevant to the thesis topic by the supervior; provision of guidance in topic selection and refinement; provision of helpful feedback on progress; provision of good guidance in literature search; and overall satisfaction with quality of supervision.
The Climate Scale (CLIM). SREQ items 3, 8, 15, 16, 20*, 23, 24, 25, 29 & 31
This scale covers aspects of the prevailing research climate in a student's school/department, including: opportunities for social contact with other postgraduate students; integration into the school/department community; opportunities to become involved in a broader research culture; perception of other research students as supportive; feelings of isolation within the school/department; encouragement of interaction with other research students; provision of a good seminar programme; stimulation of personal work by the prevailing research ambience; provision of a supportive work environment; and feeling respected as a fellow researcher.
The Infrastructure Scale (INFR). SREQ items 2, 6, 10, 12, 19, 28 & 32
This scale covers aspects of the infrastructure available to research students, including: access to a suitable working space; access to technical support; access to a common room; access to necessary equipment; access to computing facilities and resources; appropriate financial support; and overall satisfaction with the quality of services and facilities.
The Generic Skills Scale (GEN). SREQ items 4, 7, 9, 11, 14, 17, 21, 27 & 30
This scale reflects the extent to which students perceive their studies to have fostered the development of the generic skills recognised by the university as being a valuable outcome of university education, in addition to discipline specific skills and knowledge. Skills include problem solving; oral and written communication; development of ideas and their written presentation; collaboration with other researchers; analytical skills; planning; confidence in tackling unfamiliar problems; and ability to learn independently.
 
Frequency of Supervision (Detailed report only)
The SREQ also asks research students to rate the average frequency of research supervision/support events. These include:
  • meeting face-to-face individually with the supervisor(s)
  • getting advice from supervisor(s) by telephone
  • getting advice from supervisor(s) by e-mail
  • meeting with the supervisor(s) and other students (and perhaps other academics) in a group to discuss research related issues
  • receiving guidance or assistance from fellow research students in situations not organised by the supervisor, department or faculty.

DATA REPORTING CONVENTIONS

The questionnaire asked students to respond to statements using a 5 point Likert scale to indicate the extent to which they agreed or disagreed with each item. The scale ranged from 1=strongly disagree to 5=strongly agree with a neutral mid-point.
Prior to calculation of factor scale scores, the student responses to the reversed item (items 20) were adjusted appropriately and all responses were re-calibrated using a -100 to +100 scale to facilitate reporting. This is the standard SREQ reporting procedure, in line with similar procedures for the CEQ and SCEQ.

The following data is included in the various reports:

OVERALL REPORT
Faculty/Degree Average: This is the average of the student responses for each item or factor scale.
Broad Agreement: This is the proportion of students who responded indicating they 'broadly agreed', ie did not 'disagree' or 'strongly disagree', with the item statement. For the support and administration services items, the proportion of students who did not rate the services they used as 'poor' or 'very poor' are reported. This is a standard CEQ report format.
Agreement: This is the proportion of students who either strongly agreed or agreed with the SREQ item statement once the reversed items had been adjusted. This figure removes the neutral responses from the measure of 'Broad Agreement' described above.
Disagreement: This is the proportion of students who either strongly disagreed or disagreed with the SREQ item statements once the reversed items had been adjusted.
SUMMARY REPORT
Mean: The figure reported is the average of the students' ratings for each item, recalibrated to + 100 to -100 scale. The midpoint zero, corresponds to the neutral rating of 3 on the original Likert scale, +100 corresponds to five and -100 corresponds to 1.
Standard Deviation: This is a measure of the central tendency of the sample. It indicates how the scores cluster around the mean. The greater the variability in scores the higher the standard deviation.
N: This is the total number of responses (sample size) for that particular item.
The data is also presented graphically as the % who agreed (4&5), were neutral (3) or disagreed (1&2) with each item.
DETAILED REPORT
%: This is the proportion of the students who assigned each rating (Strongly Agree, Agree, Neutral, Disagree, Strongly Disagree) for the item.
Value: This is the recalibration of the 5 point Likert scale (Strongly Agree, Agree, Neutral, Disagree, Strongly Disagree) to the +100 to -100 scale.
N: This is the total number of responses (sample size) for that particular item.
AGREEMENT REPORT:
Broad Agreement: This figure is the proportion of students who responded indicating they 'broadly agreed', ie did not 'disagree' or 'strongly disagree', with each item statement. It is the sum of the Neutral, Agree and Strongly Agree ratings, expressed as a percentage of the total number of responses for that item. The percentage Broad Agreement is also presented as a bar graph.
Agreement: This figure is the proportion of students who responded indicating they 'agreed', ie 'agreed' or 'strongly agreed', with each item statement. It is the sum of the Agree and Strongly Agree ratings, expressed as a percentage of the total number of responses for that item. The percentage Agreement is also presented as a bargraph.
N: This is the total number of responses (sample size) for that particular item.

 

MINIMUM SAMPLE SIZE for REPORTING

SREQ reports are available at university, college and faculty levels.

The minimum recommended sample size for SCEQ reporting is 20 valid responses. This is the same convention applied to reporting the CEQ and SCEQ. In aggregated degrees where less than 20 valid responses have been received a report is still provided however a warning message notes that the results should be interpreted with caution.

Reports are not provided for samples with fewer than 5 respondents. This is necessary to ensure anonymity of respondents.

 

OPEN RESPONSE COMMENTS

The open response comments are made available to faculties to support the interpretation of the SREQ data. They are typed up and returned to Faculty Associate Deans Learning and Teaching. The comments are returned as a searchable database and as a text file.

RESPONDING TO THE REPORT

The ITL works closely with the Graduate Studies Office to consider how the faculties might make the best use of such evaluation and quality assurance data.The ITL also collaborates with faculties to arrange follow-up fora on the SREQ and PREQ on request. Such fora should be open to all staff and students of the faculty and are intended to stimulate debate and discussion on improving the experience of research higher degrees based on the SREQ and PREQ results.

The SREQ and PREQ data can also be used by faculties in the development of their annual research plans and in developing teaching grant applications. Staff of the ITL are available to provide support to faculties in the interpretation of the SREQ and PREQ data and the development of strategic responses to address any issues identified.