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Student Course Surveys

Student course surveys at Laurier are conducted online at the end of term through the survey portal and can be completed by students online during this time. Student course surveys cannot be re-opened after this window has closed, so it is important to complete your survey during the available period. Students receive an email on the opening day of the survey period to advise that the window has opened. Each survey should take no more than 10 minutes to complete.

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Providing Feedback

Developed by the Faculty of Education at Laurier

Constructive feedback is an invaluable part of the learning process for both students and instructors. Instructors evaluate this information when they are planning future courses. By providing constructive feedback, you help instructors improve their teaching. Information from surveys can be considered by department chairs and deans when they are making decisions related to reappointment, tenure and promotion.

Remember when you are completing course surveys:

  • Anonymity: Unless you self-identify there is no way to identify any single student with the normal tools of our course survey software. The tools are controlled by an independent third party, who is legally bound to maintain anonymity.*
  • Confidentiality: All data presented to instructors is aggregated and anonymous. Surveys are conducted for only those courses which have enrollment of at least five students.
  • Instructors do not receive summaries of students’ surveys until after final grades have been received by the office of the registrar.

Considerations when completing rating scales

  • Questions are rated on a seven point scale: Strongly Disagree to Strongly Agree. Choose ‘Neutral’ only when you feel your response is truly between the two endpoints; this choice gives no information to the instructor. ‘Not applicable’ should only be chosen when the question is not relevant to the course or the instructor.
  • Consider your specific setting at this university and the course/professor you are evaluating in completing the scale. As you are completing the scale, be thinking of instances where you would like to indicate “yes, but…” or “what I mean is...” or “no, however…” Include these elaborations in your written comments.

Considerations when completing written feedback

  • Be constructive and respectful. Do not use derogatory comments based on race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, age, etc. For example, stay away from “He’s too old” or “Please comb your hair differently” or “Why do you wear a scarf?”
  • Be specific: Include details that will assist the instructor to know exactly to what you are referring. Instead of: “The instructor was vague.” write “The instructor didn’t give clear direction in assignments. Instead of: “I wanted more time to discuss.” write “The instructor would ask a question and not give us time to talk about the answer.”
  • Be balanced: Instead of focusing only on the negatives, write what you’d like the instructor to start, stop and continue.
  • Contextualize: Ensure that your comments are set in context of the course, your background, and the discipline.

*The anonymity clause may be precluded if there is perceived danger to a person or imminent threat to the population (i.e. terrorism) outlined in the comments of the tools. In this extreme case, law enforcement would dictate the exposure of computer code which will reveal any threats.