How to effectively report back

So now we have covered the importance of reporting back, so how is this done best? Remember, your role involves closing the feedback loop and really ensuring that the cohort you represent are well-informed and feel their opinions and perspectives have been heard.

Whenever something is acted upon or changed, keep the cohort in the loop by updating them. You should feel proud that you have achieved change, so shout about it! 

Your department should also be helping to promote what has changed as a result of student feedback. Perhaps you could work with them on promoting the “Together We Changed” page on MySurrey Voice discussion boards, so that all staff and students can collectively feel proud of what has been achieved. At research level, perhaps your department could give you a space in any regular departmental communications that you could utilise for promoting your successes.

Social Media, Group Chats, and Face-to-Face

These platforms can give you quick, easy, and informal ways to communicate back once a decision has been made as a result of the feedback you have gathered. This is a great option and continuing the conversation with your peers to close the feedback loop in this informal manner can keep your role as Course Rep continually present when you interact with your peers.

Strength: Convenience and ability to give regular informal updates, great for small updates

Weakness: Not all your peers will have access to the same social media platforms or group chats, and this can be too informal for important updates or for research-level cohorts.

Emails

Emails are best for more complex or thorough updates that need to be accessible and seen by all members of your cohort. Emails can also be a great way to share the meeting minutes from any meetings where you have represented your peers, as an attachment or by including important sections in your email.

As we covered before, when you attend your University-organised departmental or Faculty-level meetings, someone will be there taking a record of the meeting and this will be sent around to all attendees following the meeting. These minutes will document everything that was discussed and decided. Use the minutes that you’re sent to tell your cohort what was discussed – you can pick out the actions and decisions made and use these to tell students what’s been decided. 

Strength: All your peers have access to emails, easier to share detailed or complex updates, and easy to share attachments

Weakness: More formal, may possibly be missed by peers who receive many emails

MySurrey Voice

For Undergraduate and Postgraduate Taught Reps, you can use your MySurrey Voice discussion boards to update students regularly about how their feedback is progressing. On your discussion boards hosted on Unitu, you will be able to easily see and interact with completed actions that staff have taken in response to your feedback. You can comment, boost, and share those completed actions, and this is a fantastic way to show your entire cohort what their feedback and your representation has achieved. 

You can encourage other students to also interact with completed actions, showing staff that they are happy with changes or new ideas to address student feedback. This will ensure students know what has happened as a result of them sharing their opinions with you. There will also be a “Together We Changed” page on the MySurrey Voice platform, which will document successes. Promote this whenever you have an update!

Strength: Accessible to all UG/PGT students, easy to demonstrate how feedback is progressing and to include updates from staff too

Weakness: Not all your peers may have activated their accounts