UPSU Research & Data

The Insights Team

UPSU Research is carried out by the Insights Team. Our aim is to inform the Students’ Union’s activity through various research methods. We do this by collecting student feedback, analysing and reporting on internal and external data, and monitoring demographic engagement with the SU. It is also our job to ensure that all student’s SU accounts are up to date by refreshing the system on a monthly basis to make sure it matches up with UoP records.

Research methods most commonly used to gather data that can inform the SU’s work include:

  • Student surveys
  • Focus groups
  • Sector research
  • Interviews

The Team Consists of:

Head of Marketing and Engagement - Anita Butler

  • Oversees UPSU’s Insights Team and Marketing Team from a strategic point of view.

Insights Function Manager - Jake Jones

  • Oversees and develops the Insights function, ensuring that appropriate data is collected to inform the SU’s work. He coordinates and plans insights work, collaborating with other functions of UPSU, and ensures the delivery of the results to relevant people including University of Portsmouth staff to help the student voice be heard.

Insights Specialist - Alfie Redman

  • Responsible for managing numerous individual projects, alongside assisting Jake and the wider Insights Team with those projects considered more large scale (e.g., Annual Survey).
  • Also responsible for the management of student staff.
  • He collects and analyses relevant data and writes reports to be shared round the organisation and to UoP staff.
  • He also monitors university data to help inform UPSU’s work.

Insights Assistant - Eleonora Chioatto

  • Ele offers Insights a student perspective first hand! Her involvement in the team allows Insights’ data to be interpreted from the point of view of a student. Ele supports the team by collecting and analysing data, writing reports for UPSU and UoP staff, and monitors demographic data to help with the Union’s EDI commitments.
  • This is a part-time student staff role, if you are interested in this role or what other student roles are available at the Union, CLICK HERE

How to get involved:

There are a lot of ways you can get involved in participating in our research gathering, and you might even get rewarded for doing it! Here are a few ways you ca get involved:

Insights aims:

  • To be transparent - we want you to be confident that your feedback matters! We aim to share survey and focus group results to keep you informed on the student voice
  • To represent your voice - the purpose of us collecting feedback is not only to monitor our own work to ensure the SU is as effective as it can be, but also to influence the University to make changes based on your feedback!
  • To be accurate and reliable - we aim for all of our surveys to have a 95% confidence level with a 5% margin of error. For focus groups we always aim to have a wide level of representation of as many demographics as possible to gather feedback from a diverse range of students, in accordance with the research. This is to ensure that all students have been considered when it comes to student feedback!
  • To have data-driven decision making - we want all of our projects to be student led and driven by student data! All our projects and events heavily consider student feedback so it is important to get your voice heard!

How to get in touch with us?

Very easily! If you would like to chat to Insights about your data needs; or simply would like to learn more about our role within UPSU, please email us at If you would like to change anything about your account on the SU website, please email us but be aware that if your details are not changed on the University’s system, your details will be reverted back to what is on the University system when Insights do the monthly refresh.

Ongoing Projects

  • Democracy Review - ongoing in 2023/24. The aim of this is to review UPSU's democratic structures and design new processes to help us represent you. The Insights team is heavily involved in this project, having rolled out a student survey that helped inform the working group on what students think of the current elected officer roles.
  • Personal tutors work - Insights is supporting UoP academics in helping them understand students’ experiences with their personal tutors as a way to improve this service. Insights research has come from Annual Survey analysis (compared with the previous year), alongside focus groups to provide greater context on the data.
  • SU building student consultation - the Insights team are heavily involved in the development plans of the new Students’ Union building. We have recently gathered feedback from students regarding the University’s Estates Redevelopment Plan which we have reported back to the University for them to implement.
  • UPSU Climate Priority - the Insights team is committed to do all we can when it comes to mitigating climate change. We support the UPSU Climate Group by researching students’ views on climate change and best sustainability practices from other organisations in the Higher Education landscape.
  • Future Careers - the Insights Team is fundamental in helping develop The Portsmouth Award. We recently gathered feedback about The Portsmouth Award to inform UoP’s Careers and Employability service on how to improve it.
  • Student Engagement Dashboard - The Insights Team has assisted UoP on the development of the Student Engagement Dashboard by gathering student feedback on how it can be improved.
  • Lasting Change - The Insights Team has supported the University-wide Lasting Change programme that aims to connect staff and students in a community of learning and sharing. Initially, the programme will be focussed on improving the University experience and academic outcomes for PGM students.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you ensure the accuracy and reliability of your insights?

  • We aim for all of our surveys’ sample size to gain at least 95% confidence level with a 5% margin of error, with our current student population being around 30,000, this would mean approximately 380 survey respondents to achieve this confidence rating. We also carry out demographic breakdowns of our surveys to ensure we are capturing a representative voice of our student population.

How do you handle confidential or sensitive information?

  • Your privacy is extremely important to us and the way we handle your demographic data is strictly confidential. We follow compliances set on our Data Sharing Agreement with the University. For more information see this link -
  • However, there are some limits to confidentiality: If anything said in the survey leads us to believe that there is a significant risk of harm to you or someone else or something illegal is mentioned we may be obliged to report such information to other relevant authorities.

How do you determine which research method to use for a project?

  • This is dependent on what the project is. For example, if we want to capture a wide range of opinions from students on a certain topic, a survey may be the best way to do this. However, if we want more detailed information on a topic, where students can be asked to elaborate on their opinions, a focus group or interview may be more appropriate.

What tools and technologies do you use?

  • Primarily, we use Excel and Google Sheets for data analysis, but we also use NVivo and Qualtrics to help us with going through survey data. All our surveys are designed on Qualtrics.

Page created: Thu, 13 Jan 2022 16:15:10 GMT
Page updated: Tue, 11 Jun 2024 14:55:08 GMT

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