Students in conversation

Student surveys

Collecting your feedback to improve the student experience at UCalgary

We’re listening!

Your feedback helps improve the student experience.

Hearing from students is critical in helping us improve what we do. If we don’t know about an issue, we can’t fix it. We also love hearing what's going well so we can continue with it! We're here to listen, and we act on feedback we receive.

Below are some of the surveys that are used to improve the student experience at UCalgary. We hope you will share your feedback and insights if you receive any of these surveys in the future. 

If you want to provide feedback and have not had an opportunity through one of the surveys, you can always email department heads, deans or managers, who welcome the chance to hear from students. If you are not sure who to contact, please use your UCalgary email to contact

Thank you for taking the time to share your perspectives.

Institutional surveys

University of Calgary lead: Office of the Vice-Provost (Teaching and Learning)

Frequency: Once for each academic term; fall, winter and spring/summer intersession

Participants: All students currently enrolled in a course that is nearing completion

Description: The Universal Student Rating of Instruction (USRI) questionnaire was established at the University of Calgary and launched in 1998. The USRI system is a key tool for assessing teaching quality, with guidelines established for its administration and data reporting. Additionally, faculty or department-specific qualitative surveys complement the USRI. The feedback collected through these surveys plays a crucial role in understanding and improving the course experience for students, contributing to the university's commitment to academic excellence. 

As of 2024, the USRI has been renamed as the UCalgary Course Experience Survey.

University of Calgary lead: Office of the Vice-Provost (Student Experience) and Campus Mental Health Strategy

Frequency: Annual

Participants: Post-secondary students at participating institutions

Description: The Canadian Campus Wellbeing Survey (CCWS) is designed to help post-secondary institutions assess and address health and wellbeing concerns on their campuses. It utilizes established measures from existing Canadian health surveys to ensure validity and reliability. Participation is voluntary and confidential, with options to skip questions. The survey covers nine core sections, including mental health, academic achievement, substance use, and sexual health behavior. It aims to inform interventions and policy decisions while potentially accommodating additional modules in the future to cater to different institutional needs.

University of Calgary lead: Office of the Vice-Provost (Student Experience)

Frequency: Annually since 2019

Participants: Undergraduate, first-year, middle-year and graduating-year students

Description: Since CUSC’s inception in 1994, universities across Canada have jointly implemented surveys of their undergraduate students to be able to better understand and serve their students. The surveys run once a year in the winter term and operate on a three-year cycle, alternating between first-year students, middle-years students, and graduating-year students. The three surveys contain common questions that allow universities to track changes in student satisfaction and success from their first to their graduating year. Core questions include: 

  • Use of and satisfaction with various facilities and services
  • Experiences with faculty
  • Financing education
  • Whether the university experience exceeded, met, or fell short of expectations
  • Assessment of the overall university experience

Recent results: 2020 CUSC survey of middle-year students (download PDF from CUSC website) 

University of Calgary lead: Office of the Vice-Provost (Teaching and Learning)

Frequency: Every three years

Participants: First-year and final-year students in direct-entry undergraduate degree programs

Description: The NSSE survey, launched in 2000 and updated in 2013, assesses the extent to which students engage in educational practices associated with high levels of learning and development. The questionnaire collects information across five categories:

  • Participation in dozens of educationally purposeful activities
  • Institutional requirements and the challenging nature of coursework
  • Perceptions of the college environment
  • Estimates of educational and personal growth since starting college
  • Background and demographic information

University of Calgary NSSE 2023 results:

University of Calgary lead: Kevin Wiens, Interim Senior Director, Student Wellness Access and Support

Frequency: Every three years

Participants: A sample from the whole student population

Description: This survey aims to increase understanding of current health behaviours and perceptions of UCalgary students. It helps us identify the top health concerns experienced by students and provides an overview of how the data can be used to inform program/service development and research. Survey topics include general health, mental health, academic impacts, violence, abusive relationships and personal safety, substance use, sexual behavior, nutrition and exercise, disease and injury prevention, and sleep. 

Recent results: Publications and Reports: ACHA-NCHA III (Fall 2019 - present)

University of Calgary lead: Robin Yates, Vice-Provost and Dean of Graduate Studies

Participants: Open to all graduate students

Frequency: Every three years

Description: CGPSS is a national survey administered by the Canadian Association for Graduate Studies (CAGS) that was launched in 2007. Feedback from CGPSS helps UCalgary and individual graduate programs improve educational opportunities and enhance the student experience for current and future students. Key topics addressed by the survey include:

  • Overall Student Experience
  • Student Success & Well-Being
  • Program & Coursework Quality
  • Professional Skills
  • Research Experience & Dissemination
  • Dissertation Advisor/Advisory Committee

Recent results: CGPSS 2019 update

University of Calgary lead: Students' Union

Frequency: Every year

Participants: Open to all UCalgary undergraduate students

Description: The Students’ Union (SU) annual survey assists the SU in identifying key areas of impact and contribution to student satisfaction and engagement at the University of Calgary. The survey helps to inform the SU’s strategic planning, advocacy to university administration and the government, and service provision.

Recent results: 2019 SU annual survey

University of Calgary lead: Graduate Students' Association

Frequency: Every year

Participants: Open to all UCalgary graduate students

Description: The Graduate Students' Association conducts this survey to help ensure that graduate students’ concerns and priorities are voiced and incorporated in the university's plans.

Recent results: Fall 2020 survey

Currently open: 2022 Annual Survey

University of Calgary lead: Verity Turpin, Vice-Provost (Student Experience)

Frequency: Annually (not conducted in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic)

Participants: Students graduating at June convocation

Description: The university conducts this survey to better understand how graduating students feel about their overall education experience and their decision to attend UCalgary. 

Frequency: Annually

Participants: Students at a Canadian university

Description: This survey is an opportunity to represent your university and share your experience with future students. The results are used to inform Maclean’s annual University Rankings.

University of Calgary lead: Meg Martin, Sexual and Gender-Based Violence Prevention and Support Office

Frequency: The survey was administered in 2018 and 2023

Participants: All post-secondary students in Alberta; term-activated students at UCalgary

Description: This survey is conducted on behalf of the Government of Alberta, Ministry of Advanced Education. The purpose of this survey is to better understand our community’s attitudes and beliefs about sexual and gender-based violence and consent; perceptions of the climate regarding sexual and gender-based violence; knowledge of campus resources and policies related to sexual and gender-based violence; and experiences of sexual and gender-based violence.

The survey ran Feb. 1 – 28, 2023. Students receive an email invitation by survey company Leger to participate in the survey. 

The Alberta survey received a total response rate of 12,948 respondents, representing a response rate of 5.8% of the provincial student body. UCalgary’s portion of the survey received a total of 1,675 responses, a response rate of 3.5%. 

Sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) has been identified as a public health issue yet remains an area of research difficult to reach larger sample sizes. SGBV is underreported globally and remains the only type of violence that hasn’t decreased in prevalence.  

Sexual and gender-based violence has far-reaching impacts and causes significant trauma. It requires everyone to play a part in making environments and communities safe and respectful for all. Learn more about UCalgary’s Sexual and Gender-Based Violence Policy and our support office, located in Mac Hall, 488 MSC, and operates Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-4 p.m.

Recent results: 2023 provincial public report | 2023 UCalgary Report

Ongoing feedback opportunities

Course surveys

At the end of each term, Universal Student Ratings of Instruction (USRI) responses help us improve the quality of learning experiences at UCalgary. 

Learn about USRI

Student feedback inbox

Not sure who to email with your feedback, question, or concern? Have your voice heard any time of the year and on any issue relating to your student experience. 

Email us