The awards – based on the responses of 126,000 domestic and international students – recognise student satisfaction at higher education institutions in 126 countries.
This year’s top institution for overall Global Student Satisfaction was the University of Navarra in Spain.
Navarra was joined by Austria’s University of Klagenfurt for the Student Diversity award, Semmelweis University in Hungary for the Quality of Student Life prize and Sweden’s University West for the Admission Process gong.
Overall satisfaction has increased in the latest iteration of the survey, which Studyportals put down to the surge in students’ return to campuses as well as improvements in online learning.
However, satisfaction in the UK, Australia and Canada was below the global average. The US was the only ‘Big four’ study destination to be rated higher than average, with some of its institutions among the seven winners.
Institutions featuring among the 2023 winners were: University of the People in the US for best Online Classroom Experience; Denison University for Student-Teacher Interaction; and Dublin City University in Ireland for Career Development.
On a five-point scale, the global Student Satisfaction average rose to 4.21 out of 5, up from 4.06 in 2021.
Hungary’s average was 4.39, followed by Germany at 4.36 and Portugal. The 4.33 average the country’s institutions saw was highest uptick since last year, when its average was 4.05.
“We are seeing issues with the performance of the Big Four”
Studyportals CEO and co-founder Edwin van Rest noted that student satisfaction is “higher across all categories” this year, which is “a fantastic compliment to the higher education sector”.
“However, we are seeing issues with the performance of the Big Four which they need to address, and with one in five English-taught programs delivered outside the Big Four, there is more competition for students in more destinations,” he added.
According to the report published alongside the awards, Australia was the only country to see a drop in overall student satisfaction, falling very marginally by 0.01. As all other countries increased in their respective ratings, the UK also remained level with its overall satisfaction rating last year.
The paper noted that students experience ratings are often tied to expectations, with gaps between expectations and services universities are equipped with being the downfall.
“The world is filled with institutional systems that differ by tuition fees, the strength of their student services, and whether a student can smoothly enter the labour market, all of which impact a student’s satisfaction,” the report reads.