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Transkills: supporting transition to University


You will have plenty of opportunities to express your views. Please use them, even if it is too late for you to benefit. Lecturers are expected to give you the best course possible, and they welcome constructive feedback on both style and content. You must share the responsibility.

Towards the end of each course, the lecturer will distribute evaluation questionnaires and allow a little time in one lecture for you to fill them in. There will also be an overall questionnaire on all your courses, sent to you by mail at the end of the year.

In addition, you can at any time e-mail the faculty hotline (; the ‘e-quality monitor’ will either deal with your comment, or pass your e-mail to the relevant person.

In all cases:

  • Try to be specific.
  • Make comments which the lecturer can act on.
  • Resist the temptation to be rude and/or clever.
  • Remember that you are only giving your opinion: even if you hated the course others may have enjoyed it.
  • Bear in mind that it takes a great deal of time and effort and thought to produce a lecture course with handouts and reading lists.
  • Be aware that a course you found dull or incoherent or difficult may seem different when you come to revise it.

Examples of past feedback

Poor features of this course:

  • Very challenging exams and courses. Sometimes covers too much and without the resources to answer the questions
  • There were a lot of issues with the supervision system, notably in the Public Economics paper
  • As a whole I found the economics tripos to be a little too theoretical – I know that a lot of students would have found the course more interesting if it had contained a little more application of knowledge
  • Major weakness the disparity of supervisions across colleges – it is completely unacceptable for a finalist to have no work marked for one paper (public economics)
  • Generally taught well though it is a real shame that, despite almost universal complaints about the quality of macro lectures during our 1st year, our year group was given the same macro lecturer in the second year as well. Generally, however, lecturers have been speedy in responding to emailed queries and the staff in the Marshall library extremely helpful with every transaction
  • Practice exam questions, supervision solutions and year-to-year course changes are not made available
  • Lecturers brought in at short notice. Bad co-ordination with supervisions

Good features of this course: 

  • The small supervision groups characteristic of Cambridge are truly fantastic opportunities to learn and clear up doubts
  • Overall I have found the course to be challenging and broad in its focus, and I enjoyed my optional papers for Part IIB very much
  • Good breadth of course and relevant application of theory
  • Too inflexible in the first two years but a good balance of flexibility in 3rd year
  • World experts teach you stuff they’re expert in, really smart generalist PhD students who are often quite fun make supervisions pretty enjoyable

How the course could be improved:

  • More supervision with maths and stats i.e. smaller class sizes of more summary lectures
  • When introducing a new course such as Trade in the microeconomics exam I feel that a sample paper should be provided. The difficulty of the supervision questions was not the same as the exam questions on trade, also there was material that the trade questions asked which was not taught. Overall I feel that the Tripos does offer a good choice for the option papers. The macroeconomic course is also very good and interesting in terms of recent financial news
  • Students should get credit for taking challenging optional papers and choosing more difficult papers in the exams. The examination process should be more transparent
  • Tripos is good. But students should be given the chance to work together more
  • Taking just one exam per paper in the entire academic year places enormous pressure to perform on just one day. It might be better to break up each paper into 2 exams or possible have a form of continual assessment