FACULTY OF LAWS
STAFF STUDENT CONSULTATIVE COMMITTEE (SSCC)
Staff Student Consultative Committee
Meeting held on
Wednesday 16 October 2013 at 13.00
in the Keeton Room
MINUTES
1. Introductions and Apologies for Absence
The Chair welcomed everyone to the meeting.
Present:
Olga Thomas (Chair)
Mark Blakely (MB) – Director of Taught Graduate Programmes
Gemma Burridge (GB) - LLB Programme Administrator (Secretary)
Douglas Guilfoyle (DG) – Director of Research Studies
Amrit Phagura (AP) – LLM Programme Administrator
Angie Borza – LLM Student Representative (StAR)
Peter Davies (PD) – Senior LLB Student Representative (StAR)
Tiffany Georgallides (TG) – President, UG Student Law Society
Samantha Leung (SL) – (acting) First Year LLB student representative (StAR)
Claire Lougarre (CL) – Postgraduate Research Student Representative
Addie Lozjanin (AL) – LLM Student Representative (StAR)
Santosh Pandey (SP) – President, LLM Society
Queenie Sit (QS) – Second Year LLB Student Representative (StAR)
Liz Carter (LC) – Faculty Events Coordinator (by invitation)
Apologies for absence were received from:
Stephen Gurman (SG) - Laws Careers Consultant & Employer Relations Manager
Myriam Hunter-Henin (MH) – Director, European Double Degrees
Prince Saprai (PS) – Undergraduate Quality Assurance Coordinator
2. Terms of Reference, Constitution and 2013-14 Membership
The SSCC’s terms of reference, constitution and 2013-14 membership were noted.
3. Minutes of the meeting of 06 March 2013
The minutes of the last meeting were confirmed.
4. Matters arising from the Minutes
4.1 UCL Volunteering Unit Report:
OT raised Item 3.1 (UCL Volunteering Unit Report) and reported that SG had circulated the
detailed spreadsheet with all the volunteering activities to the committee members. OT
reported that Laws had scored the highest in the volunteering participation levels.
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4.2 NSS Results and Student Feedback
OT raised Item 3.5 (Student Feedback ad NSS Results) and reported that she has raised the
student feedback survey results at the FTC and this has led to there being a section devoted
to Student Feedback at the next Faculty Teaching Away Day.
ACTION POINT: OT to feedback to the SSCC after the Faculty Teaching Away Day.
4.3 Print Allowance
OT raised Item 3.6 (Print Allowance) and reported that an agreement had been made for the
print allowance to be increased from £12 to £17.
4.4 Water coolers
OT raised Item 3.9 (Water coolers) and reported that this has been taken forward and that the
Faculty Manager is currently investigating the costs involved.
4.5 Student Barometer
OT raised Item 4.2 (International Student Barometer Survey results) and reported that the
results were presented to the FTC.
4.6 Student Brand Managers
OT raised Item 7 (Student Brand Managers) and reported that that she and SG had put
together a Code of Conduct for the Student Brand Managers and had circulated to the
committee and this will be discussed in Item 9 on the Agenda.
4.7 LLB Student Questionnaires
OT raised Item 8 (LLB student questionnaires) and reported that the questionnaires had been
amended to reflect the discussions at the March 2013 SSCC meeting as well as the feedback
from staff and students.
4.8 Student Coursework Feedback Survey Results
OT raised Item 10 (Student Coursework Feedback Survey Results) and explained that she
had reported the findings and comments made at the March 2013 SSCC meeting to the FTC
and Faculty Board Meetings. Along with the NSS results, this has led to a section being
devoted to Student Feedback in the next Faculty Teaching Away Day.
4.9 Research Students Satisfaction Survey Results
Item 11.1 (Research Students Satisfaction Survey Results) was raised.
ACTION POINT: CL reported that she would discuss the survey results with DG, the new
Director of Research Studies.
4.10 Academic Legal Writing
Item 12.2 (Academic Legal Writing) was raised and MB reported that he had presented the
student feedback in relation to the LLM Academic Legal Writing course to the Dean’s Team.
5. Chairperson’s Business
5.1 Staff Contact Hours
OT reported that Staff Contact Hours have been made available on the Student Intranet and
outside the PG and UG Offices. SL commented whether it would be a good idea for the
Student Reps to also publish this in their Facebook groups. OT agreed.
6. StARs Scheme
OT brought the StARs scheme to the attention of the committee and recommended that the
Student Representatives engage with the training offered by the Student Union.
SSCC_Minutes, 16 October 2013
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7. Departmental Equal Opportunities Liaison Officer (DEOLO)
OT brought to the attention of the committee that the new DEOLO was Dr Ronan McCrea and
that he was available to advise both staff and students regarding equal opportunity issues. OT
asked the Student Reps to communicate this to their peers.
8. Laws Career Consultant & Employment Relations Manager Update
8.1 OT presented report by SG which stated that there had been a small decrease in graduate
level vacancies in all industries and in the legal sector. Statistics showed that law firms were
currently receiving 64 applications per vacancy. SG’s report also revealed that the largest
predicted increase in graduate vacancies this year is in consulting or business service firms
and the largest predicted decrease is in in banking and financial services.
8.2 Careers Appointments
OT explained to the committee that SG has set up an online booking system for careers
advice appointments and asked that the student representatives communicate this to their
peers. SG will also email students to bring this to their attention.
8.3 Laws Career Programme
OT reported that the Undergraduate Law Society’s Career programme had started very
successfully and a revised programme for the LLM students was also under way.
8.4 Careers Email Circulars
OT reported that email circulars had now been streamlined and that email circulars should only
be forwarded to the Laws Careers inbox and these would be collated into a weekly newsletter.
9. Annual Reports of Chairs of the Board of Examiners
The LLB Examination Report had been circulated to the committee. OT reported that there
were no particular issues and confirmed that frustrations with the second year LLB exam
timetable had been conveyed to the UCL Examination Office. OT also reported that it was
found that the second year examination performance had not been adversely affected when
comparing examination results to previous years.
OT explained the new addition of ‘exit velocity’ when considering LLB degree classifications.
OT reported that ‘exit velocity’ will be an agenda item in the next LLB Exam Board meeting and
that a definition of ‘exit velocity’ will be concretised.
ACTION POINT: OT to offer feedback to SSCC following LLB Exam Board Meeting.
MB confirmed that the postgraduate exam report will be available after the postgraduate exam
board in November.
10. Degree Programme & Course Evaluation Questionnaires
OT reported that LLB course convenors have received the feedback from the course
evaluation questionnaires and have produced a report in response to this as well as the
examination results. These have been uploaded to the Undergraduate Homepage on the
Student Intranet of the Faculty of Laws website.
MB explained that the LLM convenor reports will be made available after the LLM Exam Board.
11. Brand Ambassador Guidelines
The Brand Ambassador Guidelines, drafted by OT and SG, had been circulated to the
committee and put to discussion.
OT confirmed to SL that lecture shout-outs for Law Society events could still be made and that
brand ambassadors should approach the Student Law Society in case they can incorporate
into Student Law Society activities.
SSCC_Minutes, 16 October 2013
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TG suggested that the guidelines are forwarded to sponsors. OT agreed.
QS had some concerns regarding inconsistency as brand ambassadors may be permitted to
do shout-outs in lectures from other departments. OT suggested that the guidelines should be
presented to college.
Guidelines approved.
ACTION POINT: OT to send out Brand Ambassador Guidelines to all students.
12. National Student Survey (NSS) 2013 Results
The NSS 2013 Results had been circulated to the committee. OT reported that UCL Laws had
performed very well, especially compared to our competitors, and had achieved 95% for
overall satisfaction. OT reported that there had been a decrease in the score for Assessment/
Feedback and Academic Support categories. This will be discussed in the next Faculty
Teaching Away Day.
ACTION POINT: OT to report back to SSCC after Faculty Teaching Away Day.
13. Student Barometer Results 2013
OT reported the Student Barometer Results to the committee.
14. Student Issues
LLB Students:
14.1 Feedback concerns
SL reported that there had been some concerns regarding feedback on non-assessed work.
OT confirmed that reminders would be sent to all staff, including part-time Teaching Fellows,
regarding the service standards and that the Faculty would be strongly monitoring this. As
mentioned before, there will be a section devoted to Feedback in the Faculty Teaching Away
Day.
14.2 Recording of Lectures
QS commented that students had been tape recording lectures and asked that students be
reminded that this is not permitted.
OT reported that Lecturecast was being more widely used and that the Faculty would
welcome student feedback.
14.3 Personal Tutors
QS asked what the minimum number of personal tutor meetings per year was and what
should students do if they are not receiving the minimum number. OT explained that
Personal Tutors should be meeting their tutees at least three times a year and that students
should report to her if this is not happening.
OT reported explained that there is a pilot scheme this for first year LLB student personal
tutor meetings where the meetings are scheduled in the students’ and tutors’ individual
timetables and that this should be rolled out to 2nd and final year students for next academic
year.
OT also reported that a budget had been agreed for Personal Tutors to spend on social
events with their tutees and that guidelines were being approved.
14.4 Student Photograph
PD enquired if the Faculty would allow for the student group photograph to be placed on the
wall in the basement corridor. OT confirmed that this already had been approved.
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LLM Students:
14.5 Room Changes
AB commented that there had been a number of room changes for LLM classes at the start
of term and that the students have complained that they had not been informed. MB
explained that room changes happen at the start of term in order to adjust to fluctuating
class sizes. AP commented that students are advised to check the online timetable before
class and that the students would have been sent an email via email to inform them of room
changes. AP can look into why this email was not received.
14.6 Library
SP commented on the lack of available books in the library. DG and OT both explained that
students should feedback to the course convenors and the law librarian so that they could
ensure that there are enough books to meet the demand or make provisions for electronic
chapters.
14.7 LLM Society Website
SP asked if the LLM Society could have a website similar to the one for the Undergraduate
Student Law Society. MB explained that the previous LLM society committee had met with
the media manager regarding this but it was never followed up. MB suggested that a
meeting with the media manager could be set up with the new LLM society.
Research Students:
14.8 PhD Room
CL reported that research students are finding the PhD room too crowded and so many
students are avoiding coming into the Faculty. CL enquired as to whether there are plans for
a larger PhD room in the new building.
14.9 Supervisor Availability
CL also reported that there were concerns regarding the availability of supervisors as the
cohort had increased. CL suggested that the names of research students be published
under the names of the supervisors on the Faculty website so that prospective PhD
applicants can consider this when applying.
DG offered to discuss the above issues with CL outside of the meeting.
14.10 November 2014 Conference
CL reported that funding had been approved for a conference organised by PhD students to
take place in November 2014.
15. Date of Next Meeting
The date of the next SSCC meeting will be confirmed in due course.
SSCC_Minutes, 16 October 2013
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Staff Student Consultative Committee