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Education Quality and Policy Office



About the survey

The Postgraduate Taught Experience Survey (PTES) is a service made available by the Higher Education Academy (HEA) to all Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) across the UK. PTES is designed to help institutions enhance the quality of taught postgraduate (PGT) degree provision by collecting feedback from current students in a systematic and user-friendly way.

The online survey invites students to rate their satisfaction levels and provide comments in the following areas:

  • Dissertation
  • Skills and Personal Development
  • Learning Resources
  • Assessment and Feedback
  • Career and Professional Development
  • Quality of Teaching and Learning
  • Organisation and Management

The University can also ask an unlimited number of institution-specific questions.

For further information about the PTES, please contact Marianna Kaimaki (


Survey dates and target population

The survey is run at Cambridge every year, between Feb/March and June.

All students currently registered on a postgraduate taught programme are invited to complete the survey, including MPhils, postgraduate diplomas, and the PGCE.

Eligible students are sent an initial email from the University with a personalised link, asking them to complete the survey. Targeted reminders are sent to those students who have not yet completed the survey throughout the survey period.

Faculties and departments are asked to encourage students to complete the survey to help the University achieve a meaningful data set.


Data analysis and publication

Publicly available data

No institutions are named in the HEA's aggregate report and aggregate data is stored anonymously, making it impossible to construct league tables. However, the report allows comparison of Cambridge's results against the aggregate, as well as the Russell Group benchmark. Each institution remains the owner of its data and can publish its results internally and externally.

More detailed analysis for internal use only

The University has access to the full Cambridge dataset and although email addresses are stored to enable survey access control, no individuals are identified during data analysis. Departments which request their complete dataset will only receive anonymised information.


Consideration of the results within the University

Educational and Student Policy prepares a top-level summary report of the PTES results for the General Board's Education Committee. Data is disaggregated by School, Faculty/Department or course (where sufficient numbers of respondents exist).

Where results fall below that of the Cambridge average, Faculties/Departments are asked to send a brief response to Educational and Student Policy to address the feedback and outline any planned actions.


Key findings of the PTES

For the national findings of the 2010, 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015 administration of PTES see:

Members of the University can download the top-level reports (Raven-protected).


Promotional Material for PTES

A4 Poster 1
A4 Poster 2
A5 Flyer 1
A5 Flyer 2