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Lines of Communication

Questionnaires

Questionnaires are an important means of gathering information at both College and Faculty level. If you receive a questionnaire please do fill it in: this will help us to respond to your needs and suggestions. Summaries of the Faculty's responses to issues raised by internal and national surveys are posted here.

College

By now you will have met your Director of Studies and your Tutor, and they are obviously a first port of call if you have questions or difficulties, whether about an item or a reading-list, the lectures or supervisions you are attending, or Cambridge in general. Do not feel shy about approaching them on apparently minor practical matters: they can often in an instant point you in the right direction. 

Your Director of Studies has a number of responsibilities to you. The most important are to arrange your supervision efficiently, to monitor its effectiveness, to see you at the end of each term to discuss your progress, to help arrange your revision for examinations and to provide you with all necessary academic advice, guidance and information. He or she may well have regular "office hours" each week. You should expect a prompt response to emails asking a question or requesting an appointment. 

For more fundamental problems, such as supervisions which do not appear to you to be going well, it can sometimes be the supervisors themselves with whom you should raise the problem: you may be approaching your reading in the wrong way, or making avoidable and easily rectifiable errors in essay writing technique. But this is also an area where your Director of Studies will advise you.

If you are seriously unhappy about the work you are doing, you may also find it helpful to talk to your Tutor. Your College Chaplain and/or Counsellor are there to offer you guidance on general problems but they can give you an informed second opinion or more practical matters, too.

Faculty

The administrative hub of the Faculty is on the 4th floor of the Faculty Building. If you cannot find the information you need from the noticeboards or information screens, you should go to the General Enquiries Office. This office is normally open from 9-5, weekdays in term time. Important messages relating to Tripos, or about relevant events which may of interest, will be sent to your @cam e-mail address, so please check this regularly.

Student representatives

Other lines of communication lead to your Undergraduate Representatives on the History Faculty Board and to CUSU's Student Officers who are currently undergraduates or recent graduates. The representatives can give you advice on particular academic problems which you may have been encountering, and they will be interested to hear any general comments or proposals which you have on the syllabus or on History at Cambridge. If they find that your views are shared by, or acceptable to, a substantial number of other students, they may present them at the termly meeting of the Faculty's Teaching, Learning and Quality Committee on which five students sit.

You may contact your Faculty Board undergraduate reps via the following email address: ugradreps@hist.cam.ac.uk.

Elections for Faculty Board Student Representatives take place in the Michaelmas Term, and volunteers to serve on the Teaching, Learning and Quality Committee are chosen on a 'first-come first-served' basis in Lent Term.  Any student member of the History Faculty is welcome to put themselves forward.  

Student Complaints Procedure

If you are unhappy with the experience you have received from a University department, faculty, service or staff member, the University has a Student Complaints Procedure for you to use in order to try and resolve the situation. Details are available at www.studentcomplaints.admin.cam.ac.uk/student-complaints. The Responsible Officer in the Faculty is the Academic Secretary, Dr Emma Spary, academic.secretary@hist.cam.ac.uk

Examination Reviews

The University has robust policies in place to ensure that examination results are accurate. However, there may be circumstances where something unusual happens during the examination and you want it taken into account. The University has procedures in place to deal with this possibility. For further information see www.studentcomplaints.admin.cam.ac.uk/examination-reviews.