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You are here: Home Administrative Committees Teaching Committee Meetings 24 October 2012 Course Feedback

Course Feedback

New Structure of Course Feedback Process

As most of you know, we have developed and tested a new electronic “course feedback form” for use within our School in the future. The form is considerably shorter than the old "paper forms" and has fewer "free text" questions. A copy of the form (as it appeared online during May/June 2012) is attached here.

The old "paper forms" have now been retired from use, and are no longer available for download from the Informatics webpages.  This item is to inform Faculty of the new process we will use to generate feedback on our courses.  We will use the same Questions as we did for our test survey of May/June 2012.

Week 4/5, Semester 1:

Lecturers may use the "mid-semester questionnaire" distributed by Stuart Anderson in 2011/12, to get early feedback on how students are coping with the course.  It is a paper form, here is a .pdf copy.  The plan is that ITO will send a reminder to semester 1 lecturers on Monday of week 4 suggesting they may want to use this (didn't happen this semester, but we plan this for the future).

Wednesday week 8, Semester 1:

We will create an online survey on BOS for our collection of semester 1 courses, and advertise this to the students and faculty.  Faculty are encouraged to advertise this survey for their own individual courses (either in lecturers, or by email to the class list).  In particular, if there are aspects of the course the Lecturer especially wants feedback for, they should raise this in a lecture, perhaps by including this on their slides.  The deadline for responses to the survey will be Sunday, end week 4, of semester 2.  We will remind the students the Thursday before (from our experience with the May/June trial survey, it will make a big difference if the lecturer emails the class list to encourage them).

Sunday, end week 4, Semester 2:

Semester 1 BOS survery closes.

Week 4/5, Semester 2:

Semester 2 lecturers can use the "midsemester" questionnaire to get early feedback on how students are coping with the course.

Wednesday week 8, Semester 2:

Create and advertise the semester 2 version of the BOS online survey.

After the Exam period (say May 30th):

Semester 2 BOS Course Survey closes.


Generation and publication of "Course Survey reports"

To be decided, but certainly no later than week -1 of semester 1, 2013/14.  We are considering automating the process by which these reports are created (the manual generation of the reports was slow, and the presentation quality is less than perfect).

The reports will be published on the "course survey webpage":



In semester 2 of 2011/12, a "feedback forms" committee was set up to address the format of the "Course feedback forms" used within the School, and to address the issue of "closing the loop" (ie, publishing the responses in survey form to assist the next year's students in making their course choices, and to allow Lecturers to address the concerns of the students).  The members of the committee were Gillian Bell, Mary Cryan, Sharon Goldwater, Kolos Kantor (UG4 student), Charles Sutton, Barbara Webb and Stuart Anderson.

The first stage was to address the format of the Feedback forms.  The old "paper forms" were not well-liked by students, and it was felt they were too long, and had too many "free-text" questions.  After a few weeks of discussion and refinements, we settle on a format of 11 basic "Strongly-Agree/..../Strongly-Disagree" multiple choice questions, plus 3 "free text" questions:

"What are the changes that would most improve the course?"

"What would you say to students considering taking this course?"

"Any additional comments on the course of its lecturer(s)?"

The new "feedback form" can be implemented as an electronic survey through Bristol Online Survey, which the University subscribes to.  A screen grab of the survey is attached here.  This survey was released to students on the 21st May 2012 (later than we originally planned) with a closing deadline of 30th June.

As faculty and student now know, the responses submitted by students during that 21 May-30 June were filtered and collated.  For every individual course, a "course survey report" formed from the responses to all Questions on the form was created for the Lecturer, and another version created from responses to the multiple-choice questions plus the "What would you say to students...?" question was created for publication to staff and students within the School.  The "Course Survey Reports" were published on the following DICE-authenticated webpage: