Teaching Excellence at DU

Teaching Excellence at DU

  • Multi-modal Evaluation of Teaching

    • All of the DU reports on teaching excellence recommend using mutliple methods (beyond just student rating forms) to fairly evaluate teaching performance. Many reports recommend annual review of teaching and “enhanced” review at specific intervals. Teaching review would be based on an articulated breakdown of sources of evidence developed by each unit/dept.

      Although there are varying opinions and research around Student Evaluations of Teaching (SETs)/Student Ratings of Instruction (SRIs), most agree that they should not be used as the sole basis of evaluating someone's teaching performance and effort.

    • Teaching Evaluation Toolkit

      The OTL website has a Teaching Evaluation Toolkit with ideas and resources about multiple methods for evaluating teaching.


    • Guiding Principles

      It is worth articulating assumptions and guiding principles for a process of supporting, rewarding and ultimately evaluating teaching.

      • Learning to teach is not a one-time endeavor. Teaching is a lifelong practice that involves ongoing reflection and engagment in continuous improvement. The support, reward and evaluation of teaching should take a developmental approach. 
      • Instructors all have different developmental trajectories, different interests, strengths, and contexts for teaching. Therefore plenty of choice and flexibility should be provided within some required areas of development. The process should be indivdiualized and self-directed. 
      • There is no one "right way" to teach. But at the same time, there are widely agreed-upon evidence-based standards of best practice. 
      • In order to improve teaching, reflection by the instructor is essential. The intellectual work of teaching - the deeper thinking about ones teaching practice - is harder to represent and evaluate than the more superficial aspects of teaching. 
      • Any summative judgment about an instructor's teaching should be based on mulitple types of data points collected from multiple sources (students, instructor, chair, peer/colleagues, external experts). Qualitative or narrative sources of evidence are essential due to the complicated nature of teaching.
      • The main focus of teaching support and evaluation should be on the process of continually enhancing the teaching pracice. 
  • Examples at DU

    • Many units across DU are exploring and implementing more balanced frameworks for evaluating teaching.

    • The Daniels College of Business has been piloting a new approach to evaluating teaching based on four main categories of teaching performance: 

      • Meeting student needs (course design, challenge, alignment, teaching strategies, inclusivity, etc.) 
      • Meeting student expectations (student satisfaction through course rating forms)
      • Engaging in continuous improvement (course and curriculuar innovation, professional development around teaching, etc.)
      • Fulfilling teaching commitments (course preps, # of students, types of courses taught, student engagement outside classroom, etc.)
    • The Writing Program has utilized an extensive process for evaluating teaching for many years as outlined in their faculty handbook. Teaching evaluation includes:

      • Reflection on teaching development - a 2-4 page written discussion of the past year's teaching 
      • Course design/Instructor feedback - upload syllabi and 3 commented student papers showing instructor feedback from each writing course taught
      • Instruction - course visit from the Director of writing
      • Student Experience - student course rating forms including questions specific to the writing program
    • Morgridge College of Education

      The Morgridge College of Education is piloting an approach to teaching evaluation based on four areas:

      • Professionalism - demonstration of knowledge base, continuous improvement in teaching, reflective practices
      • Instruction - demonstration of multimodal teaching and educational standards reflected in content
      • Assessment of Learning - demonstration of student progress
      • Learning Environment - demonstration of student satsifaction and inclusive teaching practices

This portfolio last updated: May 23, 2017 11:51:50 AM