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Student evaluations: The value of student feedback

At the end of each semester, students evaluate the courses they are taking and the faculty that teach them. Some may wonder what the university does with all of this data.

eLearning Services reviews online faculty student evaluation surveys at the end of each semester to identify opportunities to improve course material and teaching effectiveness. In partnership with online faculty, course developers interpret feedback to view the situation through students’ eyes, university teaching requirements, and opportunities for continuous improvement.

Jones (2012) completed a study to determine if students’ response to student evaluation for online courses can be used to identify improvements in teaching and course value. The results of the study indicate data provided by students support faculty and higher education administrators to identify actions for improving overall student satisfaction (Jones, 2012). The biggest action items increasing student satisfaction, included well developed and organized courses, and providing students with engaging learning experiences. Another action with positive impact was strong presence of faculty facilitating the class and engagement with students.

As the semester comes to a close encourage students to complete their end-of-term student evaluation survey. Share with them the value of the information provided from the midterm survey results. Let them know you and the university are listening to and value their feedback.

Remember, as student satisfaction increases, it can have a positive impact on student retention, enrollment, and graduation rates.

Jones, S. J. (2012). Reading between the lines of online course evaluations: Identifiable actions that improve student perceptions of teaching effectiveness and core value. Journal of Asynchronous Learning Networks, 16(1), 49-58.

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