Thinking about the adult literacy study that Lynne Marcus, I, and our crack team put together caused me to wax nostalgic about the federal agency that sponsored the whole event: an arm of the US Congress called the Office of Technology Assessment (OTA). Established in 1972 as a specialized arm of the legislative branch assigned to investigate scientific and technological issues that might come before Congress in the form of legislation,
I believe that it is important to think about why these student course evaluation ratings are being obtained, and how that relates to the kinds of measures used. I pointed out in Part 2 that the one-shot end-of-course retrospective rating system cannot obtain ratings valid over the whole term. There are procedures that could obtain valid ratings,
This topic is too good to let go without a reprise; this post is based in part on a final post that I made to the LinkedIn discussion I mentioned earlier.
The point has been made repeatedly and correctly that feedback has to be multidimensional, reflecting different aspects of the teaching. Almost every survey tries to assess these different aspects.
For a couple of weeks now, there has been an energetic discussion on the Higher Education Teaching and Learning discussion board on LinkedIn around the question, “Do student evaluations measure teaching effectiveness?” In the course of some 335 comments, including several of mine, the discussion has predictably gone around the circle several times.
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