Course and Instructor Evaluation

For my pre-service teacher course I created this survey as my final evaluation.  15 out of 18 students responded.  Given they did not know it was an online and for most, they thought this would be basically a “how to use software” class, the results were fairly pleasing.  By the way, I loved how Google forms created a nice summary of my evaluation.

I also asked what ideas/resources they will continue to use. Here are a couple of responses.

  • I’m not to sure what I will continue to use as time goes on, but I do know that I appreciated my blog, but I don’t always have stuff to say so I will like not being marked on the content. I will also continue to use my Igoogle I have created as well as all of the other aspects of google. They will be significant in the classroom.
  • Google: igoogle, reader, earth, maps; I will continue to visit the classes I was mentoring; I will hopefully keep up with my blog; i will have a class blog in my classroom, and use the computers there often once I’m teaching; this class helped me to become familiar with many, many things regarding technology in the class, and lots of the tech tasks helped me to figure out how to do things that I will be more confident doing again; I also learned how to use some things I had used before better and in different ways; I have become more comfortable and familiar with blogging; I really enjoyed this class!!! I liked being at home, and learning so many new and useful things! Thanks so much Dean!!!

I asked what I could do to improve the course.

  • I think that having the blog worth so much is kind of stressful. I think that a blog is something that takes adjusting to and having to do it so much caused me a lot of frustration because I didn’t always have stuff to say which kind of hurt my mark a little bit. I think that three hours a night was kind of rough to, I mean you can only stay interested for so long, and at night time there is always other homework that needs to be done so it caused a bit of frustration.
  • It was a great course, but if we could have more knowledge of our marks or the marking structure as we go along, that would be really helpful.
  • The blogging expectations seemed high like I didnt know how to meet the standards for the highest ones (of course aiming for the highest… but couldn’t possibly)
  • To inform the students of blogging other than tech tasks right away as well as his expectations for blogging right away
  • More time in the classroom at the beginning of the class to make sure all students were on the same page. Maybe go through things like smart boeads more as well.
  • Dean’s great! i love the final project was so personal and flexible. I think there was a lot of assignments. I didn’t have time for everything. huge work load. but very worth it!
  • explain clearer in the beginning about blogging: the min. # needed each week, and for commenting as well min. #, also about having non-tech task blogs and how they don’t count for the required number, maybe give some ideas of things you could blog about, maybe show some past students blogs; Maybe a few less tech tasks; maybe have one more face to face in the beginning of the semester so people can put faces to names/voices/blogs (i still don’t know some people from their face but i do know them from their blog/name/voice)
  • not as many tech tasks so we are able to focus and learn from each one more.  I found the more tech tasks there were the quality of work for each assignment was not as high.

Having to teach again in a couple weeks, I already know a few things I’ll do differently.  Certainly I was unclear regarding my blogging expectations and perhaps weighted it too heavily. As much as I find value in reflecting and having a clear web presence, for many this was a challenge. The dilemma I have is that I need to have some mechanism to observe their reflections and thinking. Perhaps there is another way? Not everyone is going to want to blog as they enter the classroom but I do want everyone to share. This is where I’m still struggling. The mentorship and guest speakers continue to be a highlight as well as the pecha kucha night. I also need to rethink how to spend 3 hours in one sitting online. Even the best speakers can likely only hold attention for 30-40 minutes. I need to offer more interactivity and take advantage of breakout rooms inside Elluminate. One of the best classes we had was on bullying where students broke into groups to tell their stories. With a short turn around time, I may not have time to change much and I’m not sure I need to. This term I hope to work closely with Alec who will be teaching an advanced level of the course but we think we can combine a number of ideas.

What types of mechanisms to you use to improve as a teacher? Do you have great evaluation form? Any suggestions for me?

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  • It takes fearless chutzpah to open yourself up to critiques like this! Students can be brutal! But they obviously enjoyed learning from you and I’ll bet they especially appreciated being heard at the end of the course. I know most universities require evaluations, but your personalized version gave students more of a voice that probably led them to reflective introspection, and their answers will symbiotically help and guide your efforts to refine your course. Perhaps one or two of your students will follow your example and be open-minded enough to invite comments from their students some day! Thanks for sharing the ease and simplicity of Google Forms for this use.

    Sharon Elins last blog post..New Year’s Resolutions: How can I make this school year better?

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  • Ken

    Do you already use Twitter in the course? If not what about adding that for web presence and reflection. You could then adjust the blogging expectations while still having them experience another way to connect with others and share their thoughts.

    Kens last blog post..DPI_Education: Learning becomes a ‘hands on’ experience at Huffman ISD,, this is a school district that we recently worked with

  • Dean-you are a true educator modeling that excellence is never fully achieved only strived for. You are a wonderful model of transparency, self reflection, and adaptability…the very traits we want our students to possess! Kudos to you! Oh, I am so stealing this evaluation tool for the graduate class I am teach in January! Happy Holidays!

    Angela Maierss last blog post..2008 Edublog Award Winners

  • Mike Sandridge

    I’ve been following your work for a few weeks now dean, and I flip=flop between being inspired by what teaching in the 21st century looks like; and, jealousy for not having the opportunity to take a class similar to yours when I was in College a few years ago.
    Excellent Stuff!

  • @sharon

    Certainly the concept of transparent learning is a major theme which, while not all embraced, they experienced it. I’m hopeful many will continue in some format.


    A few of my students found twitter on their own. I”m always a bit hesitant with twitter as it seems to take a while for it to work for people. I wonder if my course is too short? I may show it and provide it as an alternative or supplement to network building.


    thanks. means a lot coming from you.


    that’s the beauty of today’s environments, we can be fully immersed as teachers and learners. thanks for the kind words.

  • Wow, that’s a great use of Google Forms. And nice work with the course. Looks like you connected and educated your students.

    Ed Kohlers last blog post..Car Buying: CarZen’s Recommendations

  • I have been using forms in Google Docs at my school a lot recently, but can’t figure out a way to nicely print the summary results. Have you had any success with printing? I have a teacher working conditions survey that contains about 70 items and the only way I can see to print is to copy/paste screen shots — which is a pain for that many questions. Thanks!

  • First, kudos for sharing your student evaluations; this demonstrates that you are a model of a true reflective practitioner! My suggestion: combine blogging w/ reflection by setting up a class blog where you post the question/task, and students post answers/reflections. This will scaffold those who need that support. Maybe make a personal blog “extra credit” or don’t weigh so heavily. Myself, I felt more comfortable about my own blogging after posting comments on blogs of others. Here’s one to check out: (It’s an elementary classroom blog, but makes the point.) Just my thoughts; I envy your students! 🙂

    Linda704s last blog post..Post under construction