A qualitative study to improve the student learning experience

Date04 September 2017
Published date04 September 2017
AuthorRaid A. Jastania,Gehan F. Balata,Mohamed I.S. Abd El-Hady,Ahmad Gouda,Mohamad Abd El-Wahab,Abeer Temraz,Nashwa M. Ibrahim,Eman Beshr,Abeer Y. Mahdi,Rabab Mousa,Batool F. Tag,Hadeel Hisham,Ibtehal El-Sofiani
Subject MatterEducation,Curriculum, instruction & assessment,Educational evaluation/assessment
A qualitative study to improve the
student learning experience
Raid A. Jastania
College of Medicine, Umm-Al-Qura University, Makkah, Saudi Arabia, and
Gehan F. Balata,Mohamed I.S. Abd El-Hady,Ahmad Gouda,
Mohamad Abd El-Wahab,Abeer Temraz,Nashwa M. Ibrahim,
Eman Beshr,Abeer Y. Mahdi,Rabab Mousa,Batool F. Tag,
Hadeel Hisham and Ibtehal El-Sofiani
College of Pharmacy, Umm-Al-Qura University, Makkah, Saudi Arabia
Purpose For any educational institution, studentsatisfaction is an important goal. Thus, the purpose of
the study is to use a structured improvement process, denemeasureanalyseimprovecontrol (DMAIC)
methodology, to improve studentssatisfaction regarding their learning experience at the College of
Pharmacy/UmmAl-Qura University.
Design/methodology/approach The study rst denesthe problem and develops the project charter.
Then the study visualizes the studentslearningexperience process that is dened using a ow chart and a
value streammap. Studentsvoices were captured througha modied version of a survey developed by Levitz
(2015-2016) that covered different aspects of the studentslearning experience. Next, Pareto analysis and
cause-and-effect diagramswere used to identify the few vital factors affecting studentssatisfaction. The net
promoter score was chosen as a primary metric to measure studentssatisfaction regarding their learning
Findings The analysis results revealed that there were eight areas of dissatisfaction: poor catering
services, improper physical environment, studentsfeedback being overlooked, inappropriate measures for
course delivery,absence of appropriate advice about future career, inefcienteld experience and nally and
poor academic support.Based on these results, an improvement plan was prepared and the rststage of the
plan was implemented.The success of the plan was investigated by measuringthe net promoter score which
was increasedby about 11.9 per cent afterimplementation of the rst stage of the plan.
Originality/value The study emphasizes that the DMAICmethodology can be applied successfully to
improve studentslearningexperience and to discoveradditional value for students.
Keywords Loyalty, Satisfaction, Six Sigma, Learning experience, Net promoter score
Paper type Research paper
Currently, universitiesbelieve that higher education is a service industry, and have set great
emphasis on meeting the needs of their students who are considered to be customers.
ONeill and Palmer, 2004 dene service quality in higher education as the difference
between what a student expects to receive and his/her perceptions of actual delivery.
Donaldson and Runciman (1995), considered service quality as a key performance measure
for excellence in education. Hennig-Thurauet al. (2001) mentioned that educational services
play a central role in studentslives, and students require huge amounts of motivation and
Disclosure: There are no conicts of interest.
Received 30 August 2016
Revised 3 April 2017
Accepted 10 July 2017
QualityAssurance in Education
Vol.25 No. 4, 2017
pp. 462-474
© Emerald Publishing Limited
DOI 10.1108/QAE-06-2016-0031
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