In Tampere University, we have been working with information systems and developing them for quite some time now and we, the Student Union, student associations and Tampere University faculty, have done this work together. Starting to use a mutual student information system and shutting down the old systems has brought a lot of work and uncertainty among us students. Because the new systems don’t work as well as we had hoped, we need to find a way to improve the situation. This current situation wears students down for example in the area of finding and receiving information and course feedback.
Johto ry, the umbrella organization in the faculty of Management and Business at Tampere University, has published their statement regarding University’s communications to students. In their statement, they demand improvement in this area in our University. For example, the University’s Intranet and it’s problems are mentioned, and the fact that we should not concentrate on developing new systems for the University when there is still a lot of work to do with the current systems. The Student Union of Tampere University has also signed this statement and supports Johto ry in their thoughts about the importance of communications between students and University faculty: “It is paramount that students are involved in the communications of their University and are able to find information independently.” You can read Johto ry’s statement from their webpage.
In addition to the statement about communications between students and the University, Johto ry has also published their statement about the course feedback system and the importance of feedback in developing education. Our University’s current course feedback system is not working at its full potential. In their statement, Johto ry brings up that there are problems in the system and how it is used. These problems are, for example, related to uncertainty of giving feedback, in some courses the feedback forms are missing, also teachers’ answers to feedback and information about how these feedbacks are used are not clear to all. TREY has signed this statement, as well, and we agree with Johto ry in their thoughts about the importance of feedback systems: “A well-functioning feedback system benefits students and, more broadly, the entire University – It is a step towards higher quality education.” You can read Johto ry’s statement from their webpage.
Tampereen TietoTeekkarikilta ry, TiTe – the Guild of Information Technology at Tampere University, has also published their statement in favor of making course feedback or at least visiting in the course feedback system, mandatory. In their statement, TiTe brings up the fact that currently the course feedback system is not serving the development of teaching in its full potential. They also state that the decreasing the amount of feedback can have a negative effect on the standard of teaching and the development of courses. TREY agrees with these statements and we agree with TiTe on their statement about the course feedback system: “No technical restrictions should limit a change this important.” You can find TiTe’s statement paper from their webpage.
“In TREY we believe that the development of teaching, communications and mutual systems is an important part of the every-day activity in our University’s community. As a Student Union, we want to support our student associations in their advocacy work in these matters that affect all of us. Communications in focus of students, the University’s Intranet and our current course feedback system’s functionality have caused a lot of talk among students, which only highlights the importance of student associations’ advocacy work and our desire in TREY to support this activity.”, states TREY’s Chair of the Board Iiris Taubert about signing these statement papers.
For more information about these statements, you can contact the associations or TREY’s Specialist in Educational Affairs Tiia Virtanen. Tiia’s contact infromation can be found on TREY’s webpage.