If you haven't already, you will soon receive an email asking you to provide feedback on your modules, and VP Education Kate Roberts tells you why this is so important.
You will soon be receiving an email with a Module Evaluation Questionnaire attached for each of the modules you took this term. A Module Evaluation Questionnaire is your opportunity to give feedback on your modules and ensure your voice gets heard.
This is a short questionnaire for each of your modules, which provides space for you to comment on how you found the module, what you really liked, and what could be better.
These questionnaires have been redesigned this year with student involvement so they are much shorter and able to work on your phones and tablets as well as a computer. The questionnaire now also provides more room for qualitative comments, which can be really helpful for your lecturers when they develop modules, so if you have a lot to say, make sure you write it down!
At the Students’ Union, one of our five key aims is to improve your education. My role as VP Education is to represent your academic interests and ensure the student voice gets heard. Alongside your academic reps, one of the main ways you can give feedback over the year is through these Module Evaluation Questionnaires.
These questionnaires are looked at very carefully by module leaders, who are encouraged to respond to you through Moodle after the surveys. They are used in Annual Reviews and Periodic Reviews of programmes.
Your comments are taken very seriously and can make a real difference to how a module is run and to the experience of other students who take the module after you.
The Module Evaluation Questionnaires open today and close on 15 January, so make sure you fill them out while your experience is fresh in your mind.
I would encourage you to please ensure that your feedback, while being accurate to your experience, is constructive. This is not a place to criticise your lecturer just because you don’t get on with them.
Really think about the content of the module, whether you feel you have met your learning outcomes and whether you feel the style of delivering the information was effective and helpful.
Would you have preferred more lab sessions? Were there enough online resources available? Would you have liked to study a particular topic in more detail? Try to make your comments as helpful as possible as this will mean the module is more likely to change if needed based on your feedback.
And lastly, if you really loved the module – let them know!
When completing your questionnaires you should also be aware of unconscious bias. Unconscious bias is defined as prejudice or unsupported judgments in favour of, or against one thing, person, or group, in a way that is usually considered unfair.
Unconscious bias occurs automatically as the brain makes quick judgments based on past experiences and background.
Although we all have biases, many unconscious biases tend to be exhibited towards minority groups based on factors such as class, gender, sexual orientation, race, ethnicity, nationality, religious beliefs, age, disability and more. We may not even be aware of these views and opinions, or be aware of their full impact and implications.
It should be recognised that evaluations of modules may be influenced by your unconscious and unintentional biases about the lecturer. In some studies, women and lecturers of colour have been shown to be systematically rated lower in their teaching evaluations than white men, even when there are no actual differences in the instruction or in what students have learned.
As you fill out the questions please keep this in mind and make an effort to resist stereotypes about your lecturers.
I appreciate it’s the end of a very long term but please do take a small chunk of time to complete these surveys to help improve the experiences of those that come behind you. Thank you!
Registered charity no: 1141998
The Students’ Union, Royal Holloway
Egham, TW20 0EX