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#Fact: How SPOT Evaluations Are Used

4 Comments on #Fact: How SPOT Evaluations Are Used

Course Evaluation Day. Finally I Have My Revenge!It’s that time of the term when all your teachers beg you to complete the SPOT survey, and I want to tell you the #Facts about how we use your feedback in my department.

What We Do With Your Comments

I use your feedback to figure out if the course is giving you what you need. I take your suggestions into account as I set up my classes in the future.

My department uses your feedback as part of the system that is used to evaluate how well I am doing as your teacher. Both the survey answers and the comments that you make are read by others in the department to provide annual review feedback to me each year. Most (but not all) departments on campus use a similar system.

What I Would Love to Hear

Here are some things you can write about as you respond to your SPOT survey for this class:

  • Give concrete details. Use a specific example or two to help me understand your comments. Instead of saying, “This class taught me a lot,” say what the class taught you a lot about; or instead of saying, “I wish this class covered more,” say what kinds of things you wish the class had covered.
  • Think of your feedback as continuing the conversation. You have been sharing resources on Facebook and adding comments on the course blog. Adding comments on the SPOT evaluation is just another way to continue telling me about what you are learning and thinking about the course. I am really interested in hearing what you have to say. Just be honest, and tell me what you think.
  • Let me know how you feel about the course policies. I care a lot about making the course fair for everyone. I know you all have other classes and obligations, so I have tried to set up the course in a way that makes it fair and easy for everyone to do well. That is why I have the grace period and the infinite revision system, for instance. Did these policies seem fair to your? Do you have suggestions? Let me know.

And Now Some Reminders . . .

  • Your feedback is anonymous and I will not see it until AFTER course grades have been submitted, so there is no way that your feedback can influence your grade.
  • You can include completion of the SPOT survey as evidence of your work to earn a grade higher than B. State that you completed the survey in your final. Include a screenshot if you have one as evidence. If you don’t, no worries. All work in this course is covered by the Honor Code, so lying about the survey would be a violation.



I think the success of SPOT surveys can be either a hit or a miss depending on the effort and time students put in writing them. If a student doesn’t give concrete details on the free answer questions, then his/her feedback isn’t going to be help the teacher improve their course.

Honestly, in my first two years of college I hated SPOT evaluations and only completed them when my professors forced us to in class. I think I was annoyed that I was prompted to complete them every time I logged in. Mainly, I just didn’t have any immediate opinions to write, so I decided to write nothing at all. This year, however, my opinion changed and I see their value. My semester was full of classes that I had very strong opinions about: I either hated or loved them. I was motivated to praise the teachers that I admired and give constructive feedback to the teachers whose classes I didn’t enjoy. We are paying tuition and SPOT evaluations guarantee that our feedback is heard and our education is quality.

I personally have done SPOT evaluations during 2 of my 7 semesters so far in college. I usually find them very tedious, mainly because the system can act up and doing a survey for 5 classes can get tiring. However, now that I have reached some upper level classes, I wish more people before me had done SPOT surveys. There are some classes I’ve had where the content is disorganized or the professor is simply not the best. Because students don’t take the time to give their opinions, problems with classes are not resolved. If we do not speak our. minds, then problems will continue on for those who come after us.

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