Teaching Evaluations – the best of both worlds?

CAPSL logo, via their website.Two – relatively recent – posts on Concurring Opinions caught my eye. They both deal with student survey evaluations of lecturers’ teaching skills.

In the first, Sarah Lawsky asks some important questions:

about teaching evaluations: how they are best structured and analyzed, disseminated, and used to make decisions, and, in the larger scheme, how differing interests should be weighed as we address these issues.

And in the comments, she receives some excellent advice (“the overriding principle is to have a clear understanding of who the intended audience for an instrument is”) and links to further resources on the topic.

In the second, Dave Hoffmann points to another paper on the issue, and concludes from it that

well-regarded, young, inexperienced teachers provide better short-term results (hypothesis: enthusiasm), but over the longer term unpopular, older, experienced teachers add the most value.

Query: in an attempt to give students the best of both worlds, can teachers and lecturers not be both enthusiastic and experienced?

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