Blog articles

Best practices for designing and implementing course evaluation surveys

Posted on 4/17/2019 by Elizabeth in category: survey software articles
Before starting on your course evaluation design, you need to figure out what your goals are for your research and what information are you looking to obtain. Also, what will you be using the information for? Are you looking for feedback on how satisfied your students are with the course structure, communication of administrators or teaching methods? No matter what information you're trying to collect through your course evaluation survey, you need to follow some best practices so you get the feedback you are looking to obtain.

1. Keep it Short

It's essential you make your course evaluation survey tool short. Only ask the necessary questions. Your students will be more inclined to complete your survey if you keep it short. If your survey is too long, students may become bored and not provide their true, honest feelings and opinions.

2. Be Clear On the Purpose of Your Course Evaluation

To improve courses, you want to receive meaningful student input. Gathering feedback from your students on their learning in class will provide guidance for improvement.

3. Use Online Survey Software

Ensure the course evaluation process is flexible and as convenient as possible for your students. With survey software online, your students can complete your survey with greater flexibility and at their convenience. They can also choose what device they'd like to complete it on whether it be on a laptop, desktop, smartphone or tablet.

If your course evaluation survey is flexible and convenient, you'll receive better quality feedback from your students since they can fill it out at a time they decide on that works better for them. This will allow them to really consider their responses.

Online survey software also enables you to design the survey using skip logic, brandling, multiple types of questions and more.

4. Create Questions that are Clear and Make Sense

Sometimes, ineffective course evaluations occur because the questions aren't focused in purpose. Therefore, you'll want to avoid double-barreled questions that unintentionally ask your students to evaluate on two criteria.

Also, use a few question styles. For example, you might wish to use a combination of question styles like rating-scale questions and single- and multi-response questions to gather specific answers. It wouldn't hurt to throw in a couple open-ended (short, comment) questions to collect general feedback. These types of questions allow you to collect direct comments.

5. Make Your Survey Confidential

Let your students know their evaluation responses will be completely confidential. When your students know their anonymous, they'll be able to provide outright, candid feedback comfortably. And again, this is another way of increasing your response rates.

Be sure to implement as many of these best practices as possible to get the most out of your course evaluation surveys for the benefit of future students and your organization as a whole.
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