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Course Evaluations

Official End of Semester Course Evaluations

The official course evaluation system, CourseEval, is managed by the applications team in IHP IT.

CourseEval

CourseEval creates evaluations for all courses based on the information in Colleague, our Student Information System. This information includes instructors of record, class roster, and course start and end dates. Evaluations include questions regarding the course and instructor(s). Evaluations are anonymous. CourseEval does track who has and has not completed an evaluation but responses and scores are not connected to who submitted them. 

CourseEval notifies students via email when evaluations are open for a given course; typically the final two weeks of a course for semester long courses or the final week for shorter courses. The simplest way for students to access CourseEval is via the link on their D2L homepages. They will also be  notified of account information for accessing the CourseEval system via email. Faculty will be notified via email when the evaluation period has closed and the response data is now available.

CourseEval is also used for the mid-semester Student Experiences Survey that is distributed in late February/early March each year as well as the Exit Survey distributed to graduating students at the end of each semester.

Course Evaluation Syllabus Statement

All instructors are asked to include the following statement in their syllabi regarding the importance of course evaluations:

"Official, anonymous course evaluations are administered through the CourseEval system at the end of each semester. Because giving constructive feedback is an important component of professionalism, it is expected that all students complete an evaluation for each course. Your input contributes to improvements in teaching and learning and is one measure by which faculty members are evaluated for promotion."

Interpreting Evaluation Results

Feedback from a course evaluation can sometimes be difficult to parse. Student feedback can be invaluable, but it is not always presented in a way that provides a clear path forward. Interpreting student responses and making adjustments to your course design and teaching requires careful thought and planning. Consider scheduling a Teaching Consultation to discuss the results of your course evaluations.

Read more:

Vanderbilt University’s Center for Teaching: Student Evaluations of Teaching

Challenging Misconceptions About Student Ratings of Instruction

Mid Semester Feedback

A “Mid Semester Check In” is a common activity for gathering feedback from students on how a course is going.  By collecting feedback at the middle of the semester, rather than waiting until the end of the semester, an instructor can make minor but meaningful changes to the course before it ends.

This check in can take many forms, informal conversation, minute paper, focus group, but survey (either in class or online) is a common tool.

Example Mid Semester Check In questions
(available as a survey in the Desire2Learn Learning Object Repository)

How much do you agree with the following statements?
(Likert scale 1-5 Strongly Disagree to Strongly Agree)

I feel sufficiently challenged.

The expectations and assignment in this course are clearly defined.

Open response questions:

What is going well in the course?

What could be improved in the course?

Tips for Gathering Mid Semester Feedback from Students
• Gather feedback early enough that changes can be implemented that semester
• Ask questions that are meaningful to you, don’t feel constrained by standardized forms.
• Communicate to students why you are gathering feedback
• After gathering feedback be transparent about what changes you are or are not making.

Read more:

Tutorial:  Copying Midsemester Feedback Survey Questions from the LOR

Carnegie Mellon Eberly Center: Early Course Evaluations