Research in Higher Education

, Volume 13, Issue 4, pp 321–341 | Cite as

Effectiveness of student-rating feedback for improving college instruction: A meta-analysis of findings

  • Peter A. Cohen

Abstract

This article applied meta-analytic methodology to integrate findings from 22 comparisons of the effectiveness of student-rating feedback at the college level. On the average, feedback had a modest but significant effect on improving instruction. Instructors receiving mid-semester feedback averaged. 16 of a rating point higher on end-of-semester overall ratings than did instructors receiving no mid-semester feedback. This corresponded to a gain of over one-third of a standard-deviation unit, or a percentile gain of 15 points. The effects of student-rating feedback were accentuated when augmentation or consultation accompanied the ratings. Other study features, such as the length of time available to implement changes and the use of normative data, did not produce different effect sizes.

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Abrami, P. C., Leventhal, L., & Perry, R. P. Can feedback from student ratings help to improve college teaching?Proceedings of the 5th International Conference on Improving University Teaching. London: 1979.Google Scholar
  2. Aleamoni, L. M. The usefulness of student evaluations in improving college teaching.Instructional Science 1978,7 95–105.Google Scholar
  3. Bess, J. L. The motivation to teach.Journal of Higher Education 1977,48 243–258.Google Scholar
  4. Braunstein, D. N., Klein, G. A., & Pachla, M. Feedback expectancy and shifts in student ratings of college faculty.Journal of Applied Psychology 1973,58 254–258.Google Scholar
  5. Carter, K. R. The effect of student feedback in modifying teaching performance. Unpublished doctoral dissertation, University of Georgia, 1974.Google Scholar
  6. Centra, J. A. Effectiveness of student feedback in modifying college instruction.Journal of Educational Psychology 1973,65 395–401.Google Scholar
  7. Cohen, J.Statistical power analysis for the behavioral sciences (Rev. ed.). New York: Academic, 1977.Google Scholar
  8. Cohen, P. A., & Herr, G. A procedure for diagnostic instructional feedback: The Formative Assessment of College Teaching (FACT) model.Educational Technology 1979,19 18–23. (a)Google Scholar
  9. Cohen, P. A., & Herr, G.Improving instruction in the college classroom: does mid-semester rating feedback make a difference? Ann Arbor: The University of Michigan, Center for Research on Learning and Teaching, 1979(b).Google Scholar
  10. Cohen, P. A., & McKeachie, W. J.The role of colleagues in the evaluation of college teaching. Improving Collegeand University Teaching, in press.Google Scholar
  11. Costin, F., Greenough, W. T., & Menges, R. J. Student ratings of college teaching: Reliability, validity, and usefulness.Review of Educational Research 1971,41 511–535.Google Scholar
  12. Erickson, G. R., & Erickson, B. L. Improving college teaching: An evaluation of a teaching consultation procedure.Journal of Higher Education 1979,50 670–683.Google Scholar
  13. Glass, G. V. Primary, secondary, and meta-analysis of research.Educational Researcher 1976,5 3–8.Google Scholar
  14. Howard, G. S. A program to improve instruction: A promising area for psychologists.Professional Psychology 1977,8 316–327.Google Scholar
  15. Hoyt, D. P., & Howard, G. S. The evaluation of faculty development programs.Research in Higher Education 1978,8 25–38.Google Scholar
  16. Isaacson, R. L., McKeachie, W. J., Milholland, J. E., Lin, Y. G., Hofeller, M., Baerwaldt, J. W., & Zinn, K. L. Dimensions of student evaluations of teaching.Journal of Educational Psychology 1964,55 344–351.Google Scholar
  17. Kulik, J. A., Cohen, P. A., & Ebeling, B. J. Effectiveness of programmed instruction in higher education: A meta-analysis of findings.Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis, in press.Google Scholar
  18. Kulik, J. A., & Kulik, C-L. C. Student ratings of instruction.Teaching of Psychology 1974,1 51–57.Google Scholar
  19. Kulik, J. A., Kulik C-L. C., & Cohen, P. A. A meta-analysis of outcome studies of Keller's personalized system of instruction.American Psychologist 1979,34 307–318. (a)Google Scholar
  20. Kulik, J. A., Kulik, C-L. C., & Cohen, P. A. Research on audiotutorial instruction: a meta-analysis of comparative studies.Research in Higher Education 1979,11 321–341. (b)Google Scholar
  21. Kulik, J. A., & McKeachie, W. J. The evaluation of teachers in higher education. In F. N. Kerlinger (Ed.),Review of research in education (Vol. 3). Itaska, Ill.: F. E. Peacock Publishers, 1975.Google Scholar
  22. Marsh, H. W., Fleiner, H., & Thomas, C. S. Validity and usefulness of student evaluations of instructional quality.Journal of Educational Psychology 1975,67 833–839.Google Scholar
  23. McKeachie, W. J. Student ratings of faculty: A reprise.Academe 1979,65 384–397.Google Scholar
  24. McKeachie, W. J., & Lin, Y. G.Use of student ratings in evaluation of college teaching. Ann Arbor: The University of Michigan, Department of Psychology, 1975.Google Scholar
  25. Menges, R. J. Evaluating teaching effectiveness: What is the proper role for students?Liberal Education 1979,65 356–370.Google Scholar
  26. Miller, M. T. Instructor attitudes toward, and their use of, student ratings of teachers.Journal of Educational Psychology 1971,62 235–239.Google Scholar
  27. Murphy, J. B., & Appel, V. H. The effect of mid-semester student feedback on instructional change and improvement. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, Toronto, March 1978.Google Scholar
  28. Overall, J. U., & Marsh, H. W. Midterm feedback from students: Its relationship to instructional improvement and students' cognitive and affective outcomes.Journal of Educational Psychology 1979,71 856–865.Google Scholar
  29. Pambookian, H.S. The initial level of student evaluation of instruction as a source of influence on instructor change after feedback.Journal of Educational Psychology 1974,66 52–56.Google Scholar
  30. Rotem, A.The effects of feedback from students to university professors: an experimental study. Unpublished doctoral dissertation, University of California, Santa Barbara, 1975.Google Scholar
  31. Rotem, A., & Glasman, N. S. On the effectiveness of students' evaluative feedback to university instructors.Review of Educational Research 1979,49 497–511.Google Scholar
  32. Scott, N. H.A pilot study testing effects of feedback on teaching behavior as measured by student ratings at New River Community College, Dublin, Virginia. Unpublished doctoral dissertation, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, 1976.Google Scholar
  33. Seibert, W. F. Student evaluations of instruction. In S. C. Ericksen (Ed.),Support for teaching at major universities. Ann Arbor, MI: The University of Michigan, Center for Research on Learning and Teaching, 1979.Google Scholar
  34. Sherman, T. M., & Winstead, J. C. A formative approach to student evaluation of instruction.Educational Technology 1975,15 34–39.Google Scholar
  35. Smith, D. L.The relationship of feedback to professors of the results of student ratings of their teaching effectiveness at mid-semester to their end-of-semester ratings. Unpublished doctoral dissertation, University of Southern California, 1977.Google Scholar
  36. Stumpf, S. A., Freedman, R. D., & Aguanno, J. C. A path analysis of factors often found to be related to student ratings of teaching effectiveness.Research in Higher Education 1979,11 111–123.Google Scholar
  37. Thomas, H. B., Jr.Changing teacher behavior: an experiment in feedback from students to teachers. Unpublished doctoral dissertation, Purdue University, 1969.Google Scholar
  38. Tuckman, B. W., & Oliver, W. F. Effectiveness of feedback to teachers as a function of source.Journal of Educational Psychology 1968,59 297–301.Google Scholar
  39. Vogt, K. E., & Lasher, H.Does student evaluation stimulate improved teaching? Bowling Green, Ohio: Bowling Green State University, 1973 (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. ED 078 748).Google Scholar
  40. Weerts, R. R. The use of feedback from student ratings for improving college teaching. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, Toronto, March 1978.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Agathon Press, Inc. 1980

Authors and Affiliations

  • Peter A. Cohen
    • 1
  1. 1.Office of Instructional Services and Educational ResearchDartmouth CollegeUSA

Personalised recommendations