Student Experience

What it is to be a Student Rep in these Interesting Times

Poppy Thomson, final year LLB Law student explains her role as a course rep and the impact that covid-19 has had on bridging the gap between students and the Law School

By Poppy Thomson, LLB Law Final Year Student

Even the smallest person can change the course of the future, and the Student Rep System provides a podium from which at Coventry University, we can. Being a Student Course Representative gives a voice to anyone who wants to make a difference at the university, whether a fresher or a postgraduate.  

I have been a part of the Rep System, here at Coventry University, since my first year. It is a fantastic way to get involved with how the University runs and to ensure that the wishes and needs of the students are met. During my time as a Rep I have witnessed the Faculty of Business and Law change where lectures take place, ensure lecturers are teaching in a manner the students respond to, and make necessary changes whenever there have been issues. Now that I am in my final year, I hope to be able to make further improvements, through my new role as a Senior Course Rep.  

The primary assignment of a Course Rep, is to gather feedback from their peers  and report up the chain to the relevant members of staff. This feedback can be both negative or positive, and the Reps are encouraged to gather both, as this is the most effective way to ascertain if the student body is happy.

After all, the Reps are the bridge between the students and the university.

This role is a very rewarding experience for students, it looks great on CVs and gives us better control over how our fees are spent. The Reps also receive a certificate for partaking, and this year I am hoping to ensure that the CUSU Leadership Awards are made more accessible to the Course Reps.

So many aspects of our lives during 2020 have been affected by the Covid-19 pandemic and, of course, the university Student Rep System is no exception. In pre-coronavirus days, Course Reps gathered feedback from students in person and their queries were then raised, twice a semester, at student voice forums. As we can no longer meet face-to -face we are now providing our services via Microsoft Teams, where our Reps post feedback and respond to issues raised. It has also made it far easier for Senior Reps to collate the responses and ensure that the necessary actions are taken quickly and efficiently.

It has been interesting acclimatising to the mix of online and on campus learning, and students have certainly had mixed reactions to it, especially with the introduction of a new online platform. However, as a Rep I certainly feel I have had more support and faster rectification of any issues I have been faced with.

As a Student Rep I have found gathering feedback from both the ‘on campus’ and  ‘online’ student community has been very rewarding and interesting. I have benefited and  learned so much myself  as a result. I honestly could not recommend being a Course Rep more highly, especially to new students, or anyone who wants to have their voice heard.

Interested in studying law with us? Our Law LLB course offers you the opportunity to gain practical legal skills, develop your global experience, and get career ready, with expert staff and employment support. Current student? You can find out more about becoming a course rep on the CUSU website.

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