In Improving Your Teaching Through Student Feedback from Cool Cat Teacher Blog, Victoria A Davis, Cool Cat Teacher, talks with Dean Shareski about Student Feedback.
“Dean Shareski’s honest talk about grades, assessment, and student feedback apply to every level of teaching. Self-reflection is an important part of teaching. Dean helps us understand how we can reflect and how our students can help.”
I think student feedback can be a good thing if it is done correctly. Yet, I don’t think we teach students how to give appropriate feedback. Sometimes we don’t ask the right questions which are as important as getting the right answers. I believe we need to teach students how to give appropriate feedback and what it means for teachers by getting this feedback.
For example, over the years that I have taught a graduate class, the feedback from some of the students (who are certified teachers) can be amusing, unrealistic, or even hurtful rather than helpful.
I have been told that they didn’t like what I was wearing (which has nothing to do with my teaching).
One suggestion was that I meet with students months in advance of the class (even though I was not getting paid for it and if they were in my shoes, would definitely resent this suggestion.)
One negative comment about my teaching was that they didn’t like the day and time the class was scheduled (which is also beyond my control).
Here are some things that students should be taught:
- · Students should not give feedback on something personal about that teacher that has nothing to do with their teaching or the classroom.
- · Students need to think about their complaint and come up with a suggestion to solve the problem.
- · Just like teachers should do, students should also look for a couple of positives to add to their negatives.
- · If students think that something different would really enhance their learning, they should share what works for them and how it has impacted their learning.
- · Students need to know that their feedback is important. Teachers should share how this feedback affects their teaching.
- Students should be given a chance to role play this and discuss their answers. Maybe they can be given a simulation or be shown a video clip of an unknown teacher (there are many on YouTube) and have them give feedback.
I believe that we can just assume that students know how to give feedback. We need to give them a chance to practice and understand the importance of their feedback.
How do you feel about student feedback? Please share.