Learning resources and student support
The introduction to study at a Bachelor's programme at SCIENCE is a priority area shared between department and faculty level, based on SCIENCE framework for introduction to study. UCPH's Guidelines for Introductory Activities are an integrated part of SCIENCE's own framework and are sent to all study start coordinators.
Work on the introduction to study continues throughout the year. At faculty level, Student Counselling and Career Guidance works on it continuously by:
- Gathering knowledge from research and practice about study-start programmes and transforming knowledge into strategies.
- Facilitating a forum for study-start co-ordinators in the departments.
- Developing study-start websites as key information channels for all new students at SCIENCE.
- Giving presentations during campus week that introduce new students to life at UCPH and show them how to navigate the relevant IT systems.
- Evaluation of the introduction to study on an overall level.
At department level, the study-start work and the annual cycle for it varies from department to department. As a minimum, it consists of:
- Developing policies and quality targets for the individual departments.
- Planning and co-ordinating campus week.
- Drawing up programme-specific content for study-start websites.
- Planning overnight trips.
The study start site is used as a single web-based platform for all study programmes tailored for new students. The website contains information about everything that students should have mastered before starting the study programme, along with information on introductory events and other aspects of the students’ day-to-day life on the study programme.
The Study and Career Guidance section is responsible for an overall evaluation of the start of studies every year. The evaluation report is based on the following:
- The new students' evaluation from the Study and Career Guidance's study start survey.
- The study start coordinators' evaluation.
- The study introduction team in the Study and Career Guidance's evaluation.
- Input from Help Desk.
- Analysis of web traffic on the study start sites in the period from 30 July to 8 October.
The evaluation report is approved by the associate dean for education and then sent to the study start coordinators in the departments, the deputy heads of department for education, heads of studies and heads of division for the offices involved. The results from the evaluation report are included in the subsequent study start planning.
Study start for graduate students
SCIENCE also attaches great importance to offering a good introduction for graduate students from other Danish universities, from abroad and students from bachelor programmes at SCIENCE. The overall purpose of graduate introduction is to ensure that the students are ready for their studies, recruit international students and retain the students.
Graduate introduction is divided into four tracks in order to target the offers and communication appropriately to the different groups of students:
- Studying in DK.
- Studying at UCPH and SCIENCE.
- Studying on a graduate programme.
- Campus tours.
For a detailed description of the four tracks, responsibility and service level agreement (SLA), see Description of study start for graduate students.
Procedure for study and career guidance at SCIENCE complies with Guidelines for Quality Assurance of Student Counselling and Career Guidance at the University of Copenhagen.
SCIENCE systematically collects data on counselling and guidance. The Section for Student Counselling and Career Guidance registers all enquiries, including the individual making the enquiry’s choice of medium, level of study, study programme, theme(s) for supervision, and the extent to which the person is referred to other units. Personal information is not recorded. The section also conducts satisfaction surveys and the work of the section is evaluated regularly on the basis of systematically collated knowledge.
The knowledge and experience collected by the Study and Career Guidance section on the students' education and careers is important information and is communicated back to the respective study programmes through the heads of studies.
In addition, Study and Career Guidance incorporates knowledge and experience from SCIENCE's employer panels in its work.
To help students make progress with their studies and reduce drop-out rates from the study programmes, Student Counselling and Career Guidance offers counselling, both in person and via e-mail/telephone. Twice a year, all students who are behind with their studies are offered an interview and informed of the faculty’s other services. Students who fall 60 ECTS credits behind are invited to an interview.
The faculty also runs a number of courses and workshops for students (SPOTevents), focusing on study techniques, study planning, presentations and exams. Another theme is careers, with a focus on career readiness.
Every third year, the university conducts Teaching-environment Evaluations (UMV). This mapping of the teaching environment is managed at University level. The findings, which are processed by UCPH and the individual faculties, inform actions plans that focus on improving the faculty's physical, psychological and aesthetic teaching environments. Read more about the teaching-environment evaluations at University level.
At SCIENCE, the results are discussed by the steering committee for the Study Environment Initiative (see below), SLT, the teaching committee, the study boards, the Dialogue Forum, the faculty's health and safety committee and by SCIENCE Administration Forum and the heads of studies. The themes and priorities identified form the basis for ongoing work throughout the faculty. SCIENCE Study Administration is responsible for following up on the results and for ensuring that they are discussed in the relevant forums.
Each head of department is responsible for following up on the findings at programme level, including drawing up action plans and working with other departments involved in the study programmes. The work on UMVs therefore makes a tangible difference to the study environment at SCIENCE.
Strategic focus for an even better study environment
The Faculty has launched SCIENCE study environment initiative 2014-16 to achieve a significant improvement of the study environment, and the follow-up on the annual survey of well-being and satisfaction and the study environment evaluation is an integrated part of the study environment initiative The initiative represents the implementation of UCPH's study environment strategy 'Strategy for the study environment 2014-16 – Road to better learning' and SCIENCE's sub-strategy for education. The aim is to realise the goals set out in SCIENCE's sub-strategy and UCPH's study environment strategy, continuously developing and supporting a good and attractive study environment at SCIENCE.
The project is undertaken under the auspices of SCIENCE's management, and the dean has the overall responsibility for it. It is coordinated by a steering committee with two members (the faculty director and the associate dean for education), two student representatives (fin 2016 an additional student representative joined the steering committee to further strenghten student participation and influence bringing the total number of student representatives to three) and two department representatives. The associate dean for education is chairman, and secretariat services are provided by the SCIENCE Management Secretariat.
To document the results and provide an opportunity for knowledge sharing and inspiration across the Faculty, a report, summarising the main results in 2014/2015, has been prepared. A similar report will be produced for 2015/16. In addition, the leaflet 'Din uddannelse, dit studiemiljø' ('Your education, your study environment') has been provided to the students to inform them of the many improvements that have been made in the study environment, and of how they are able to influence their study environment.
Students at SCIENCE can influence their study environment via the local department councils, via the student representatives in the steering group for the study environment initiative and by participating in the annual well-being and satisfaction survey. In addition, the students' organisation, the SCIENCE Students Association, has the responsibility for the Study Environment Pool, which is awarded to study environment projects at SCIENCE every year.
SCIENCE students are involved in a number of different ways in processes that seek to evaluate and enhance curricula, teaching and the teaching environment. For subject-specific curricula, the student representatives are involved via their work as members of one of the faculty’s seven study boards. For course evaluations and study-environment surveys, all students are invited to take part, and student representatives sit on the teaching committees. As well as participating in the evaluation of the academic content and communication, they can also comment on the physical frameworks, learning resources, etc.
The courses in SCIENCE are rooted in research-based knowledge and the latest research findings. Students acquire knowledge of relevant research methodology and academic theories to make them qualified to contribute to research in their disciplines.
When a study programme conducts an evaluation, it is a requirement that the students’ level of contact with research is also taken into consideration. One of the ways in which SCIENCE quantifies this is via the student/academic staff ratio. However, this should be seen in the context of the overall data about the programme, and should be included as part of the evaluation of the programme’s quality and relevance.
SCIENCE strives to provide an international study environment. This manifests itself in the faculty’s English-language master’s programmes and the fact that international students account for about one-third of all master’s students. The international environment therefore plays an important role, and students are afforded the opportunity to engage in it – both within the faculty and by travelling abroad during the mobility windows described in the curricula.
SCIENCE Education is responsible for informing students about opportunities for study or internships abroad. The information is provided by various channels: subject-specific programme websites on KUnet, which provide advice for students, application forms and information about deadlines; SPOT events and applications workshops, which are held in Danish and English and international advice given under the auspices of Student Services.
The international study environment in SCIENCE is supported by the English-language programme websites and staff pages on KUnet, which offer readily accessible information and clear guidance on programme-related administrative matters for international students and lecturers. Most of the faculty’s master’s programmes are offered in English. It must be possible to take the whole programme in English, i.e. the teaching language is English, and all exams and teaching materials are in English. The Centre for Internationalisation and Parallel Language Use (CIP) is responsible for the quality assurance of English-language teaching and runs skills-development programmes for academic staff.