Mid-Term Course Evaluation Tool User's Guide

This resource is designed to help instructors develop and use feedback tools that can provide important information about students' perceptions of how a course is going.

Building a Mid-Term Evaluation Tool Guide

The Importance of Ongoing Student Feedback

Mid-term course evaluations are formative feedback tools that can produce valuable information about how students are experiencing a course. When properly constructed and implemented, mid-term course evaluations can provide instructors with practical improvements or adjustments to a course that both the instructor and their students can make to enhance learning and teaching experiences (Hampton & Reiser, 2002; Yao & Grady, 2005). Thus, the use of mid-term course evaluations promotes a commitment to excellent teaching practices, and an investment in offering students a high quality teaching and learning experience. As stated in its strategic plan for Destination 2020, the University of Ottawa aims to “enrich the learning environment inside the classroom and out” by incorporating “the quality of teaching as part of our institutional culture” (p. 3). Destination 2020 also includes a commitment to “increase student-professor interaction” (p. 3). The collection of student feedback can offer an additional channel of communication in order to develop an understanding of students’ perceptions of a course.

Link to Destination 2020http://destination2020.uOttawa.ca/documents/destination-2020-strategic-plan.pdf

In essence, mid-term course evaluations are an opportunity for students to:

  • Express their level of satisfaction with multiple aspects of a course
  • Share constructive comments about a course early enough for instructors to be able to respond and to enact changes
  • Offer practical suggestions to improve their learning experiences in a course
  • Offer practical suggestions to improve instructors’ teaching experiences in a course
  • Offer feedback or communicate with an instructor confidentially and anonymously
  • Develop a professional student-instructor relationship
  • Become more actively engaged in a course and in their own learning more generally.

Furthermore, mid-term course evaluations are an opportunity for instructors to:

  • Learn more about students’ specific needs
  • Collect feedback that will enhance certain aspects of the course while it is currently in session
  • Design a customized evaluation to collect specific feedback that is not effectively gathered during the regular course evaluations near the end of the semester
  • Receive feedback directly from students
  • Reflect on one’s teaching practices
  • Re-evaluate the direction of a course and review the objectives
  • Develop a professional student-instructor relationship
  • Demonstrate to students that they are interested in the quality of their learning experiences
  • Collect feedback that they may include in their ‘Teaching Dossier’.