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Consultations about Teaching:  Services through the Walker Center for Teaching & Learning

IMPROVING INSTRUCTION

Staff from the Walker Center for Teaching & Learning are available for instructional observation to provide you with feedback about your teaching. There are several options available: small group instructional diagnosis, peer evaluation, and classroom observation. Call for more information!

Want to do your own instructional diagnosis session? Try Faculty-led Student Feedback.

You can perform a class check fairly easily. Give each student an index card. Ask them to label each side: 1 and 2. The students do not need to put their names on the cards…. Ask the students to answer the following questions:

  1. What do you think of the class so far?
  2. If you were the professor, what would you do differently?

Give the students 3-5 minutes to answer the questions. This is usually best done around mid-term or after the first major grading assessment has been completed.

Want an Outside Opinion? Try a Small Group Instructional Diagnosis (SGID)

Small group instructional diagnosis (SGID) is a process that elicits consensus from the students about how a class is progressing. Call the Walker Teaching Resource Center to schedule a time for a staff member to conduct the SGID. This process gets the best results if done around mid-term or after the first major test or assessment. The process takes about 20 – 25 minutes of class time. Here’s how it works. Staff from the WTRC come to your classroom and you leave. Students are broken up into small groups of 3-5 students each to discuss the following questions: “What do you like about the course and what is working well in this class?” and “What would you like changed in the course and what suggestions do you have to improve the class?” The small groups take about five-six minutes to compile a list of their answers to these questions. Then each group contributes their suggestions to build a class list. Any student may veto any item on the list. The final list of items is discussed with you in a confidential follow-up meeting.

Classroom Observation/Peer Evaluation

You can arrange for a staff member from the Walker Teaching Resource Center to observe a class as you teach. Staff attend the class, observing your presentation style and techniques, lecture skills, etc. Feedback from the observation is discussed in a confidential follow-up meeting. In addition, several UTC faculty have been trained in classroom peer observation techniques. Call the Walker Teaching Resource Center if you would like to be connected with a trained peer observer—either from your department or one from outside your content area. Peer observers can help you review your syllabi and other course materials, sit through your classes or labs, or give you feedback on your homework assignments. This feedback is offered in confidence.

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