Course Evaluations

Course evaluations can help you and your students! (see samples below)

Please consider offering students in your courses an opportunity to comment on the course. Students consider such an evaluation to be an important feature of a good course. You can use the results of these evaluations to help your students understand the variety of backgrounds and approaches present among the students.

Here are some suggestions about conducting a mid-course evaluation:

  • Provide enough time during class (10 minutes or more at the beginning of class) to complete the evaluation. Don't assign it as homework or hand it to students on their way out the door.
  • Provide questions for students to respond to (see below for examples), not a blank sheet of paper.
  • Summarize the results of the midterm evaluations for the class as soon as possible. Explain what changes, if any, you plan to make in the class. Then implement those changes. Students benefit from a brief summary of the responses and an explanation of how their feedback might lead to making changes in the second half of a course. Often, student responses will be contradictory ("The math is too hard" and "The math is too easy"). It's helpful for students to find out that not everyone is responding to the course in the same way. Students also respect an instructor's explanation of why the course content or style is NOT going to change.
  • Be sensitive to individual students' desires for their comments to remain anonymous. (You could ask a department assistant to type the responses before you look at them. Also you could ask a colleague, a mentor, a student observer or someone else to review the evaluations with you).

An easy set of questions that works well is: "What's going well for you in this course? What could be going better? What do you think [professor's name] should do differently? What do you think you and the other students should do differently?" Students also respond well to specific questions, such as "Is the amount of reading assigned for the course manageable?"

The LTC has compiled the following examples of course evaluation forms for you to use or adapt. Unless otherwise noted, all evaluations have come from Carleton faculty.

Midterm Course Evaluations

End-of-Term Course Evaluations

As you plan for future terms, remember the Student Observer Program. We have several willing and able students ready to serve.