Are Student Ratings of Instruction Useful?
American Psychologist, Vol. 53, pp. 1223-1224, 1998
6 Pages Posted: 25 Jan 2005 Last revised: 1 Jan 2012
Despite the lead article's title Validity Concerns and Usefulness of Student Ratings of Instruction (Greenwald 1997) in the American Psychologist's special section on teacher ratings, the papers did not provide direct evidence on sefulness. There is no evidence that the use of teacher ratings improves learning in the long run. The papers do not show that the effects would improve the allocation of effort between teaching and research, or that the quality of the educational experience will be better, or that students and faculty will be happier. Given the evidence to date, the case for student ratings is weak. I raise some questions about usefulness, with a particular emphasis on the ratings' effects on learning.
Keywords: instructor rating, education quality, teaching
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