Evaluation types

On different methods of evaluation

Hubert and formative evaluations

When you conduct formative evaluations, it is important that the questions you ask really meet the purpose of giving you feedback that you can take action on. Therefore, formative evaluations are mainly focused on asking about what is working well and what can be improved. This can be done in several ways, each with it's own pros and cons.

So as you ask Hubert to help out with your evaluations, he chooses what to ask from one of several pre-defined question sets that are carefully tailored to give you as actionable feeback as possible. In all examples below, "teacher" and "course" is used, but this can be changed upon creating a new evaluation.

We've put together a short description of Hubert's different question sets for you.

SSC - Stop, start, continue

The most widely used formative evaluation in higher education

  • What could the teacher stop doing, that would improve the course?
  • What could the teacher start doing, that would improve the course?
  • What is working well with the course, and should continue the way it is?
  • What's your overall experience of the course?
  • Do you have any other comments?

This evaluation is built on questions that put the respondent in a position of having to formulate recommendations, rather than stating what is working well and what's not. While the open question "What's not working well?" may generate a semi-informative answer like "the lab instructions" (which often requires the follow-up question "Why?"), the SSC question "What could the teacher start doing to improve the course?" often generates the more informative answer "give us more detailed lab instructions". Because of the actionable nature of its outcome, an SSC evaluation is often used as a mid-course evaluation, but can be used at several points over a semester. For more information on SSC-evaluations, check out this blog post or read this great article. This evaluation model is also known as SKS, which stands for stop, keep, start.

Here are some of the many universities using SSC or similar methodology:
Boston University
Carnegie Mellon University
Duquesne University
Frostburg State University
Harvard University
John Hopkins University
Michigan State University
New York University
University of California, Berkley
University of Edinburgh
University of Rochester
University of Texas
Vanderbilt University
Yale University
York University

QC - Quick check

Your new quick insight generator

  • What's your overall experience?
  • What can be improved?
  • What has been working well?
  • Do you have any other comments?

A take on the classic "How was your experience?" followed up with a "Why?". To let students be more concrete and both give positive feedback as well as suggest improvements, Hubert splits the "Why?" into two questions.

2SW - Two stars and a wish

The uplifting, positive formative feedback model

  • Star #1: What is the first thing you come to think of that is working well with the course?
  • Star #2: What is the second thing you come to think of that is working well with the course?
  • Wish: What do you wish the teacher did to improve the course?
  • What's your overall experience of the course?
  • Do you have any other comments?

This is an evaluation type that has typically been used as a peer feedback tool in earlier grades of school, but it's also a common way of collecting teacher feedback in higher education. It's positive nature, asking for two "stars" and a "wish", results in concrete feedback about what you are doing well as well as a wish for how you could improve the course.

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