Research indicates that teachers gathering and responding to midterm feedback often get higher end of term student ratings. There are much bigger increases when teachers consult with someone about the results. A January 2012 IDEA paper summarizes research on this nicely on page 12:
More importantly, midterm feedback elicits feedback from students when you can still make changes to benefit them. It also adds transparency to the classroom, especially if you share your results with your students. Students can learn from seeing that sometimes there are no easy answers, i.e., some students say they want more group work; others say they want less.
Teachers can use a variety of mechanisms to get midterm feedback, depending upon the unique culture of their classrooms. Here is a form developed by Sonia Gonsalves and modified by Heather McGovern that you might use. You are welcome to modify it (deleting questions, adding questions), use your own, or do something entirely different. The IFD office will provide a link to a Zoomerang version if you'd like an online version--results will be compiled by the software program. These links need to be prepared separately per course, so please email your request to email@example.com
The IFD office will summarize results from paper rating forms if you want because you hope that will a) reassure students regarding anonymity (handwriting), b) save you time by providing you with an overview of the results, or c) provide you with a typed summary that you can use or quote from in personnel files. Simply send your forms in interoffice mail to Heather McGovern, GENS or deliver them to F227, the IFD office.
Other resources related to midterm evaluations:
ProfHacker blog post from Spring 2012 (with links to previous ones on the topic) describing many ways (google docs, etc.) faculty might use to gather midterm feedback:
Chronicle article about increasing use of midterm feedback: As emphasis on Student Evaluations Grows....
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