This section summarizes six key concerns with student evaluations of teaching (SETs) and offers ready-to-implement workshops for reviewing their existing SET or developing a new one.
Concerns about Student Evaluations of Teaching
A key motivation for redesigning faculty evaluation processes is the heavy reliance on student evaluations of teaching (SETs). The following research was conducted in Spring 2021 to gather information about types of SETs administered at ACS schools, the ways in which SET data are used, and concerns about their current instruments:
- A survey was distributed to each ACS campus to be completed by an administrator (provost, associate dean, or the like) and a faculty member who serves on the review/promotion or tenure/personnel committee, preferably the committee chair.
- Focus groups were also conducted with multiple constituencies, including students, provosts/deans, and members of faculty personnel committees.
- The extensive existing scholarship on SETs was reviewed.
This research revealed six dominant concerns:
- Low response rates
- No faculty input in construction of questions
- Lack of agreement on how to measure “teaching effectiveness”
- Influence of irrelevant or inappropriate factors
- Misleading comparisons among instructors
These concerns are described in the PDF below.
Ready-to-Implement Workshops on Student Evaluations of Teaching (SETs)
Below are two “workshops in a box,” ready to be implemented on campus.