Incorporating previous evaluation
|ADMINISTRATION||LEARNING & TEACHING||SUPPORT|
|Evaluation reports||Updating curriculum in response to data||Useful resources|
|Closing the feedback loop|
Using feedback from previous evaluation is an important step in reviewing your curriculum before the semester begins. You can find ideas elsewhere in this site on Evaluating your teaching during the semester, and on Managing evaluation after the semester is over.
If you are new to coordinating the unit of study, ask the previous coordinator to fill you in on evaluation from the last time the unit was taught, any changes that have been made recently and any key issues still to be addressed. If your unit of study is new, there may be evaluations of similar units that you could use as a resource.
Remember to consider not only quantitative data from students elicited through surveys, but also qualitative information and ideas gathered from students, from peers, from the scholarly literature and from your own and your colleagues’ reflections on the unit of study. While quantitative data can be useful in telling you where things are going wrong, it is often qualitative evaluation that will help you figure out why they might be going wrong and how to make them better.
Once you have access to reports or information on previous evaluations you will then be able to:
- consider your responses in light of your unit of study learning outcomes and objectives, as well as the context in which you are teaching.
- consult with other staff involved in teaching the unit with you, as well as those coordinating any co-requisite units.
- prioritise responses in the light of their effect on the student learning experience and of the time and resources available.
- address the issues identified where you can, and implement improvements and updates in the unit of study.
- consider how you will evaluate the changes you have made, to find out whether you have achieved the improvements you intended.
Closing the feedback loop involves informing two cohorts of students – both the old and the new – about your response to evaluation.
The students from the previous cohort, who actually gave the feedback, will be encouraged to know that you have acted on their feedback where you can. Make sure to also explain to them if there are constraints or reasons why you have not made some of the changes they suggested.
Hearing about improvements in the unit suggested by the previous cohort and through other forms of evaluation will help your new students feel that they are in a responsive and dynamic learning environment right from the beginning of semester. It will also encourage them to be generous and constructive with their own feedback throughout the unit.
You can communicate this information through:
- email (Go to the Timetable Unit site and enter the UoS Code, Session and Year of the cohort you wish to email.)
- your department or discipline website
- your unit of study outline or eLearning website
- in class, in relation to the unit components you have changed.
The Institute of Teaching and Learning (ITL) provides suggestions and examples of how you can reflect on the evaluation responses received through surveys. See Teaching Insight: Using Student Feedback on their Teaching Insights page.
‘How to incorporate feedback and evaluation into your unit of study outline’ is compiled by The Business School and contains useful information that is applicable across faculties.
You will find Tips on using USE Feedback at the bottom of the Business School’s Evaluation & Improvement page.