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End of the Quarter Evaluations

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During Week 10 of each quarter, students fill out a university course evaluation form, administered by the registrar through Axess.  The evaluation forms are designed to focus on student learning, linked to defined course learning outcomes.

Preparing Your Evaluation Form

In the middle of the quarter, you will receive an email inviting you to customize the questions for your course evaluations so as to better align the evaluation form with your learning objectives and course content. 

  • For PWR 1 and PWR 2 instructors:  Although each instructor customizes his/her form individually, programmatically we use the same customization across all PWR 1 sections and across all PWR 2 sections.  You do have the opportunity to add a single question of your own choosing in the open-ended question section at the end of the evaluation form.
  • For Advanced PWR instructors: Instructors of Advanced Writing and Communication courses should consult with the Associate Director and the Coordinator for the Notation in Science Communication when customizing their course evaluation forms.

Customization generally must be completed before the end of Week 8; however, watch for emails from the Associate Director or Student Services Specialist for specific deadlines for each quarter.

Administering Your Final Student Evaluation

The end of the quarter evaluations should be administered during class time in the final week of classes. You do not need to leave the room while the students are completing the forms, but you should plan to set aside 15 minutes in the class to provide brief framing for the evaluations and also to allow time for the students to complete them.  Students can access the evaluation forms by going to Axess, clicking on the Student tab, and then selecting Course and Section Evaluations to find the link to the survey.

The Course Evaluation Committee (which designed the new evaluation forms and process in 2015) provided the following suggestions you might use as you consider how to frame the evaluations for your students:

  • Encourage students to answer the questions carefully and thoughtfully, and assure them that their feedback will be taken seriously.
  • Share with them the fact that the evaluation form was designed with a lot of student input.
  • Let them know that the goal of the form is to help you, the instructor, understand how they have progressed toward the learning goals, what worked well about the course, and what could be improved.
  • Invite them to use the evaluations as an opportunity to reflect on what they have learned, insights they have gained, and aspects of the course that they found challenging.
  • Assure them that their comments will be shared anonymously.

See also the further reading section on the main Administering Evaluation page for additional readings that might inform how you frame the evaluations for your students.

Reading and Understanding Your Evaluation Results

After the grade submission deadline, you will receive an email from the registrar notifying you that your evaluation responses are available.  See the registrar's page on how to view your student responses to the final evaluation for directions about how to access this information.  VPSA also offers helpful advice about how to interpret student responses.  Finally, you might want to review this PDF from VPSA about the stability of course evaluation statistics and the margin of error for these results.

By midquarter of the subsequent quarter, you will receive an email from PWR sharing the programmatic averages for the different categories on the evaluation.  You may find this helpful in interpreting your own results or reflecting on your pedagogy in preparation for composing your Annual Review Narrative.  If you want, you can set up an appointment with PWR Director, Marvin Diogenes, or Associate Director, Christine Alfano, to discuss the student feedback you have received.