Feedback plays a central part in ensuring that higher education institutions (HEIs) are successful. Feedback can be captured at all levels of an institution in a variety of ways giving academic leaders the insight they need to drive improvement institution-wide. Below, we look at several ways feedback can help HEIs drive performance at the student, staff, and institutional level.
1-Improve Student Learning: Feedback is an important part of the learning cycle, and student learning outcome is linked to institutional effectiveness. Unlike other assessment methods feedback allows students to take an active role in their learning. As a reflective process it encourages learners to consider their strengths and identify areas for development. Students will always offer feedback if it is tied to their own improvement and success. Today, feedback is typically given through a mix of channels: course evaluations, discussion forums, social media, and rating websites.
In the classroom, a formative feedback technology like Bluepulse combines the strengths of these channels into one system. With Bluepulse, students and instructors engage in an improvement-centric classroom conversation through an online social hub. Students are able to submit timely suggestions about the course on a daily basis. By listening to this feedback and taking appropriate action, educators can ensure that all learners are successful.
2-Increase Teaching Effectiveness: For instructors, feedback gives valuable clues into their teaching quality and assists to expose teaching blind spots. By collecting student input throughout the semester, instructors can gauge the pulse of their classroom and make meaningful, incremental changes to the course environment to help improve mid- and end-of-term evaluations. A text analytics tool can add further value by unlocking hundreds of new analysis points in open-ended comments gathered during course evaluations. With this complete picture of student feedback, instructors can take steps to improve course delivery, content, and their overall teaching performance.
3-Support Promotions and Tenure Decisions: A reliable feedback system can support institutions in collecting and understanding information for faculty development portfolios. Based on collected data, academic leaders can use time-trend analysis to monitor the progress over time. They can then leverage this information to demonstrate reasons for promotions and tenure. Equally, faculty members can use insights from feedback to make their case for full time positions.
4-Strengthen Student Support Services: Every university has a unique approach to student support services (SSS) that is designed to fit the needs of their learner population. As SSS is linked to retention and graduation rate, it is imperative that HEIs are proactive in providing the best services. Student surveys can help institutions collect data about the quantity and quality of services that learners receive during their university careers. Advisor assessments can gather feedback on individual academic advisors as well as identify any service needs. Student exit surveys are great for measuring the satisfaction of graduates by allowing them to share their on-campus experiences. Lesson learned from these feedback methods can help institutions in the planning and improvement of their SSS.
What are some other ways that feedback can help drive improvement institution-wide? Comment below and let us know.
Chanel M. Sutherland
Marketing Content Specialist, eXplorance