Arizona Daily Wildcat February 2, 1998
Teacher's ratings now found on WebUA students know that no semester is complete until they fill out course evaluation forms, rating their instructors on everything from course difficulty to teaching effectiveness.
Students can now see the results of those forms - and their well pondered answers - on a new University of Arizona Web site. That site, which opened last week, lists the 11 core questions and the instructors effectiveness, from "strongly agree" to "does not apply," in percentage form.
Former Associated Students President Ben Driggs proposed two years ago that the UA Faculty Senate publish the results of the teacher-course evaluations on paper.
Former ASUA Sen. Patrick Williams, who put the online idea into action, said the plan, after a few modifications, was passed by the Senate in April.
"It was more of (Driggs') intentions to get hard copies published. I pushed for the online publication," he said.
Students who wanted to see the evaluation results used to access them through specific departments, Williams said.
"The accessibility is so much better," he said, adding that the online publication will save money.
Williams said the Faculty Senate last year raised initial concerns for security and privacy for the instructors being evaluated.
Faculty Senate presiding officer Jeff Warburton said the Senate accepted the idea after it was modified so it would only be accessible locally and contain core-question results.
The site is accessible at http://w3.arizona.edu/~oce/, and only to students with a u.arizona.edu user account. Students must use their login name and password to gain entry.
Warburton said the evaluations Web site was developed by students and faculty under the direction of Jennifer Franklin, director of UA Instruction Assessment/Evaluation Services.
Warburton said the student "feedback" questions at the end of each survey were omitted from the online evaluation results because they are opinions.
"We were looking for overall ratings, not opinions," he said. "The idea is to rate the faculty without bias."
Richard Agnes, a chemistry teaching assistant, said his students take the evaluations very seriously.
"TAs get evaluated too. The professors go over the questions to see what the students meant," he said. "Based on the results, we make adjustments from what they said."