Providing Summative and Formative Feedback to Faculty in Online and Classroom Environments

By Blake Frank and Stanley Kroder.

Published by Ubiquitous Learning: An International Journal

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Student Evaluations of Teaching (SET) are routinely used to evaluate instructors. University administrators frequently use evaluations in a summative or evaluative way as input into decisions regarding salary, promotion, and retention. Simultaneously, administrators use evaluations to provide faculty formative or developmental feedback focused on improving teaching skills. Frequently, due to history or resource constraints, a single SET form is used to evaluate both online and classroom instructors. Given the growth of online courses in higher education, several questions emerge. What are the current practices employed in SET programs? Can the same SET form be used in both online and classroom environments? Can the SET form used for summative purposes also be used provide formative feedback directed at behavior change? Does the content of formative feedback differ between online and classroom courses?

These questions are addressed utilizing a survey of provosts from 92 universities regarding their use of SET ratings and the analysis of a SET database encompassing over 11,000 evaluations collected in an ongoing evaluation process using a single SET form in a southwestern university’s MBA program. This study focuses on course evaluations where the same instructor taught the same course in both an online and classroom environment in the same term.

Keywords: Student Evaluation of Teaching, Online Course Evaluation, Classroom Course Evaluation, Summative Feedback, Formative Feedback

Ubiquitous Learning: An International Journal, Volume 3, Issue 1, pp.171-182. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 1.855MB).

Dr. Blake Frank

Associate Professor, College of Business, University of Dallas, Irving, TX, USA

Blake Frank, Ph.D. is a licensed industrial/organizational psychologist and associate professor of management in the Graduate School of Management at the University of Dallas where he has conducted research on employee retention and course evaluations. Prior to joining the university, Dr. Frank headed the personnel research function of an international retailer where he oversaw the development and implementation of employee assessments that focused on talent acquisition and employee retention. He is also founder of C&E Strategies, a consulting firm with expertise in organizational research and development.

Dr. Stanley Kroder

Associate Professor, College of Business, University of Dallas, Irving, TX, USA

Stanley Kroder, Ph.D., is Associate Professor at the University of Dallas, College of Business. He joined UD in 1989 after a long career with IBM. He founded and led the UD MBA concentration in Telecommunications Management. More than 600 students graduated with this concentration. He was the founder of the UD Internet-based Online Learning program, which now accounts for approximately 30% of the MBA enrollment. Dr. Kroder received a BS degree in Industrial Management from MIT Sloan School of Management and a MS degree in Operations Research from Case-Western Reserve University. He holds a Ph.D. in International Management from the University of Texas at Dallas.