LTHEChat no. 91 – “Understanding and enhancing student academic representation systems” with The Student Engagement Partnership @tsepartnership and Dr Abbi Flint @DrAFlint

Our next #LTHEchat of the new academic year takes place on Wednesday 4th October at 8pm BST and is led by The Student Engagement Partnership @tsepartnership and Dr Abbi Flint @DrAFlint.  They recently collaborated on a small-scale qualitative research project: Architects of their experience: The role, value and impact of student academic representation systems in Higher Education in England. Ahead of the publication of their report, TSEP and Abbi will be posing a series of questions informed by their research focus and the findings from their interviews with sector experts, higher education providers, and students’ unions.

Through our history of working to support student engagement in quality assessment and the development of learning and teaching, TSEP have observed the continued central role of student academic representation systems in these processes. The importance for student representation is acknowledged in TSEP’s Principles for Student Engagement, and although its value is broadly agreed across the sector there has been little insight into or reflection on student academic representation in recent years. We were interested in exploring current perspectives on their role, value and impact, and understanding how these systems have evolved in the context of developments in student engagement theory, policy and practice. Whilst acknowledging the excellent work going on in other nations of the UK around SAR, our research focused specifically on the English HE sector, in line with TSEP’s area of focus and funding arrangements at the time of this research from the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE).

We anticipate the research findings to be of interest to anyone working with student academic representation systems, whether from a higher education provider or students’ union, association or guild. The findings provide rich insights into current perspectives of providers and students’ unions on their student academic representation systems, and indicate many fruitful avenues for future research and dialogue. We hope that you find the report and recommendations useful in reflecting on your own practices and policies and invite you to join the debate by getting in touch with us at


TSEP_full-web (2)


Student engagement is about empowering students to shape their own educational experience and creating excellent teaching and learning within a connected and cohesive higher education community. The Student Engagement Partnership (TSEP) champions and develops student engagement practice in the English higher education sector. Through our work, we provide expertise and insight, bringing together established and emerging knowledge and practice in order to equip student engagement professionals, practitioners and decision-makers across the sector with the knowledge and skills they need to make a success of student engagement in their context. TSEP is based within the National Union of Students.



Abbi Flint is an independent educational developer and researcher with specialist interest and experience in student engagement and partnership. Abbi has over 14 years’ experience of working in the UK HE sector, in institutional and national roles, with a consistent focus on participatory cultural change and student engagement and partnership in learning and teaching. She is a Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. Abbi is a Visiting Research Fellow in Student Engagement at Birmingham City University, where she has conducted research into staff perceptions of student engagement, and convenes the RAISE Partnership special interest group. She regularly publishes and presents at national and international conferences and is a member of the International Advisory Group for the International Journal for Students as Partners and the Editorial Advisory Board for the Journal of Further and Higher Education.


The storify will be added here following the chat: Storify LTHE chat 91

See you Wednesday 11th October, same time, same place. 8-9PM (BST) 

The LTHEchat team



This entry was posted in guest. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s