South Cumbria Multi-Academy Trust

Furness College bucks national trend for degree student satisfaction

Students completing university qualifications at Furness College have reported high levels of satisfaction with their programmes, according to a countrywide survey.

The latest National Student Survey (NSS) results show that overall satisfaction levels are at 80 per cent, with students particularly happy with the teaching, learning opportunities and academic support.

The results are above the national average of 75.4  per cent for the higher education sector as a whole, putting the college above many universities around the country.

The college surveyed students on its engineering, business, health and social care and education undergraduate courses and secured a response rate of 63 per cent, up 14 per cent on the previous year.

Head of Quality Improvement Mark Preston said: “We are heartened by the strong results in this survey that show our students reported an excellent experience on our university programmes, despite all the upheaval they have faced due to the pandemic. We are so proud of the effort they have put in and results achieved.

“Our aim was to continue to offer an engaging and enjoyable teaching and learning experience to our students who were, on the whole, having lessons away from campus and in a virtual learning environment.

“The rating for teaching is testament to the amazing work undertaken by our lecturers to support students and continue to ensure their education is of the highest standard.”

There are around 500 students currently on Furness College’s university-level programmes, which offer both full-time and part time study options for those already in employment. Degrees are awarded in partnership with universities including Lancaster University, University of Cumbria, UCLan and Edexcel and are taught at Channelside in Barrow. This announcement comes on the back of a college survey that also found high levels of satisfaction among students, with 98 per cent of learners saying they would recommend the college to family and friends.

Furness College Principal and Chief Executive Professor Andrew Wren said the college had not stood still during the pandemic and continued to evolve its higher education curriculum.

“It has been a challenging year for education but we have continued to innovate and listen to what our students want and will now incorporate our learnings for the benefit of future students.

“While everything has been a juggle, a big positive is that people have realised that they can succeed in the most difficult of circumstances with many now wanting a career change or promotion.

“With that in mind, our new business nightschool now focuses on industry experience as a route to a degree, rather than prior academic attainment.”

The college is also partnering with the University of Cumbria on the Barrow Learning Quarter project, part of the £25million Town Deal, to further develop routes into higher education for people across Barrow and the surrounding areas.

To find out more about degree programmes starting in September, email

Photo captions:

Degree students at Furness College have reported high levels of satisfaction, including engineering students who learn in the Advanced Manufacturing and Technology Centre at the Channelside campus.


South Cumbria Multi-Academy Trust
South Cumbria Multi-Academy Trust
South Cumbria Multi-Academy Trust
c/o Chetwynde School Croslands
Rating Lane, Barrow-in-Furness
Cumbria LA13 0NY

Tel: 01229 824 210

Company number 13414087 registered in England.
South Cumbria Multi-Academy Trust