Course Evaluation - Faculty FAQ
1. How do I set custom start and end dates for the evaluation period?
Custom dates must fall between the term start date and seven days following the term end date.
- Log into ACE at https://unomaha.bluera.com/unomaha/
- Click on the course for which you would like to set custom dates.
- Fill out the form and select, "I would like to set custom evaluation dates for this course." **NOTE: The ACE server resides off-site in Ontario. ALL TIMES MUST BE IN EASTERN STANDARD / DAYLIGHT TIME. (see screenshot 01 below)
- Click NEXT
- Select your desired start / end dates and times from the calendar drop-downs. **NOTE: The ACE server resides off-site in Ontario. ALL TIMES MUST BE IN EASTERN STANDARD / DAYLIGHT TIME. (see screenshot 02 below)
- Click SUBMIT (see screenshot 02 below)
2. What actions will be taken to ensure adequate response rates?
Other campuses that have switched to online evaluations report that their faculty receive the response rates they request of their students. Faculty who monitor response rates and actively encourage students receive higher response rates than those who do not.
A 2006 article in the Journal of College Teaching & Learning states that if faculty show they value course evaluations, educate their students on how evaluations are used, and emphasize that student input is taken seriously, response rates increase significantly (Gaillard et. al., 2006). Professor-student engagement regarding the course evaluation process is essential in improving response rates (Norris & Conn, 2005; Johnson, 2002; Ballantyne, 2003).
In addition to instructor efforts, ACE will regularly remind students of specific evaluations requiring completion with emails containing direct links to those evaluations.
If the response rate for a particular class falls below an instructor’s expectations, faculty can still set aside class time for students to submit evaluations using laptops, tablets, and smartphones.
3. What should I tell my students about the automated course evaluation system?
To ensure a good response rate and receive thoughtful feedback from students, emphasize the importance of course evaluations to the success of UNO’s academic programs and to you personally.
Stress the various ways of accessing evaluations (Blackboard, Email link, and Mobile Devices).
Remind them that their responses remain confidential and aggregated results will not be seen until after final grades for the term have been submitted.
4. Will I be able to monitor response rates while the course evaluation is open for students?
From Blackboard, faculty can view the number of invited and number of responses for each course. Faculty will not be able to identify the status for any particular student or whether they completed the evaluation.
Be sure to follow-up with students to remind them to complete the course evaluation. A paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association showed that in following-up with non-responding students, 50% of non-responders were not aware the evaluation was available to be taken, and another 16% forgot (Johnson, 2002).
5. How will I know the summary reports for my courses are complete?
One week after final grade submission deadline, email notifications that results reports have been posted are sent to faculty. Faculty result reports for various summer sessions will be available at the end of of the full summer term. Individual faculty reoprts will be available through Blackboard (ACE - Course Evals tab) and directly at http://unomaha.bluera.com/unomaha/.
6. How do I save a copy of my course evaluation results?
Reports can be saved as a PDF file. Reports may also be printed directly from the web interface.
7. Who will have access to the results of my course evaluations?
Generally, in addition to the faculty member, each unit chair/director/dean will also have access to instructor and cumulative results.
8. Will students have access to the evaluation results for courses?
Students will not have access to summary data collected for a specific course or instructor. As the new process is further implemented, UNO administration along with Faculty Senate and Student Government will consider ways to provide students with more robust information concerning courses and evaluations, while respecting rights of individual faculty.
9. What should I do if I am having problems with my course evaluations or Blackboard?
Please contact the Office of Institutional Effectiveness at email@example.com or the UNO Helpdesk at 402.554.4357.
Ballantyne, C.S. (2003). Online evaluations of teaching: An examination of current practice and considerations for the future. In D. L. Sorenson & T. D. Johnson (Eds.), New Directions for Teaching and Learning #96: Online students ratings of instruction (pp. 103-112). San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.
Gaillard, F., Mitchell, S, & Kavota, V. (2006). Students, Faculty, And Administrators’ Perception Of Students’ Evaluations Of Faculty In Higher Education Business Schools. Journal of College Teaching & Learning, 3(8): 77-90.
Johnson, T. (2002). Online student ratings: Will students respond? Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, New Orleans, 2002. Retrieved from http://www.armstrong.edu/images/institutional_research/onlinesurvey_will_students_respond.pdf, last accessed 10/28/2014.
Norris, J., & Conn, C. (2005). Investigating Strategies for Increasing Student Response Rates to Online-Delivered Course Evaluations. Quarterly Review of Distance Education, 6: 13-29.
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