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Best Practices for the Evaluation of Teaching

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Contents

[edit] Administration Process

While the specific processes used may vary somewhat from one academic unit to the next, best practice suggests the following general processes be used:

  1. Course evaluations should be administered for all courses as per the Collective Agreement (1 July 2006 to 30 June 2008), Article 16.03 (f).
  2. A third party (another faculty member, instructor, administrative assistant or graduate student within the department) who has no contact with the course being evaluated should distribute and collect the evaluation forms.
  3. Where appropriate, i.e. in courses with substantial online content, evaluation forms should be available for submission online.
  4. Purpose and process of course evaluation should be clearly articulated especially to students at the time of administration.
  5. An unbiased third party should summarize reports before they are given to a faculty member. This obviously has resource implications for the department.
  6. Faculty members are informed of who has access to evaluation data and for what purpose.
  7. Any individual who has access to evaluation data formally acknowledges that ownership belongs to the faculty member and an agreement of confidentiality is established.
  8. All course evaluation data are returned to the faculty member as one form of documentation of teaching.
  9. Academic departments should examine the process and content of course evaluation forms on a regular basis.
  10. Academic departments should make use of the resources available from the CTLET regarding formative and summative evaluation of teaching and courses.

[edit] Clarity and Accountability

This process and a copy of the departmental form should be posted on the departmental website.

[edit] Institutional best practices

The examination of the evaluation of teaching at Brock University should remain on the agenda for Teaching and Learning Committee of Senate on an ongoing or regular basis.

[edit] Uses of Evaluation of Teaching Forms

[edit] Formative

Almost 60% of faculty reported they use the evaluation of teaching forms to improve their course and teaching. In order for feedback on teaching to be effective for those students providing feedback, it should be provided while the instructor is still able to modify teaching, i.e. mid-way through course.

[edit] Summative

Approximately 50% of faculty reported that evaluation of teaching forms are used at the departmental level for the purpose of promotion and tenure. Any robust analysis of a complex topic like teaching university courses should include a multi-dimensional approach. It is recommended that faculty supplement their documentation of teaching with additional forms of summative evaluation of teaching for P&T. For example, student focus groups or peer evaluation.

[edit] More

You can learn more about the evaluation of teaching and access resources at the CTLET's web site at: http://www.brocku.ca/ctlet/services-ctlet/best-practice-evaluation .

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