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Teacher Evaluation Research

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Teacher Evaluation Research

Teacher evaluation research is designed to understand the effectiveness of teachers in terms of their ability to carry out their role - i.e. how good are teachers at teaching. There are numerous methods which can be used to do this including:

  • Exam results tracking
  • Student surveys
  • In-class observation

Exam results tracking allows us to see how good a particular teacher is at preparing a class for exams. It is most relevant for school and college teachers and lecturers, as these pupils generally take UK standardised tests and thus results can be measured against a national average, and over a number of years. Universities generally formulate their own degree programs, and thus these are not as standardised, although there are national averages for basis levels of attainment - such as those students who achieve 2:2, 2:1 and First Class degrees.

Student surveys are also a common method. The National Student Survey is delivered to all undergraduates, and many universities, colleges and indeed schools choose to run their own market research with students to assess their views on the quality of teaching. One of the problems with this however is that students' views may be coloured by their attainment - i.e. someone receiving a fail grade is less likely to give a teacher a good review, despite the fact they may have never attended any lectures personally. 

In class observation is carried out by trained observers, although it may also be done by senior members of a department as well to ensure internal quality. Whilst a more objective measure than student surveys, this method is flawed in that it may only deliver a snap-shot of how a teacher works - it does not look at their teaching long-term, and there is a chance they may put in a 'special effort' on the day of the observation.

DJS Research Ltd has worked across many schools, colleges and universities to understand perceptions of teachers and to complete teacher evaluation research. In addition, the agency also run the VoicED community - an online education market research panel with access to teachers, lecturers and other members of the education profession.

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