October 16 , 2003  
Volume 97, Issue 26  

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Western scores big in survey, but so does Trent

By Laura Katsirdakis
Gazette Staff

Yesterday The Globe and Mail published the second annual University Report Card, a ranking of Canada’s schools based on the opinions of current students from each institution. It asked students to evaluate their university in categories ranging from quality of education to the quality of food on campus.

Western was given quite a favourable review, being ranked in the top five for most of the main categories. In the category of quality of education, however, Western was ranked sixth, behind Trent University (first) and Brock University (second).

“[The Report Card] was jointly produced by Uthink and Strategic Counsel as a tool for universities and students,” said Tessa Mintz, director of client services at Uthink. “There was a need for first hand experiences [in evaluating universities].”

The survey was conducted online, Mintz explained, noting only registered university students in Canada were able to contribute to it. “[The survey consulted] students from every walk of life,” she said.

“We wanted to provide a voice for students,” Mintz noted. The survey was conducted between Apr. 2 and May 15, 2003. The universities included in the published report had between 235 and 1,532 respondents from each school.

Mintz pointed out the full report, including unedited student comments, is available online at www.universityreportcard.com. “The Web site allows people to look through the rankings and sub-rankings, and compare them,” Mintz said.

“Western ranked in the top five in 23 out of the 46 categories,” said Western President Paul Davenport. “This just shows that our faculty and staff are doing an outstanding job in providing quality education to students.”

Davenport said that, in the introduction to the survey written by Strategic Counsel chair Allen Gregg, Western was listed as one of the five schools getting it right. “This is high praise and it is well deserved,” he added.

“This really shows that we’re one of the paramount universities [in Canada],” said University Students’ Council President Paul Yeoman. “Western was ranked high in academic potential and in potential outside of the classroom,” he said, adding he was pleased to see positive rankings with respect to services offered by both the USC and the university.

“[The survey] is a joke, that’s all I have to say — Trent and Brock are known as joke universities,” said first-year psychology student Debrah Igra, when asked about the quality of education ranking.



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