Evaluation of Teaching
Students in my courses fill out standardized Student Evaluation of Instruction forms online. Students may provide written comments within these forms, which I find most useful when considering improvements to my courses. I have also been peer evaluated on nine separate occasions since beginning employment at OSU Mansfield. The majority of the evaluation visits have been from OSU Mansfield faculty members who specialize in fields outside visual art.
In my early teaching evaluations, several students reported that they needed more time to complete creative projects. Although it would not be appropriate to allow more time given the amount of material I need to cover in my courses, these comments caused me to offer some time management guidance in relation to visual projects. I now incorporate project proposals and work-in-progress due dates for each major assignment. With these touchstones, my students progress in a timely manner and are not rushed to complete assignments. I hope this endeavor will allow my students to use the time they do have more efficiently.
Since the conversion from quarters to semesters, students have expressed concerns about the length of time my courses meet, especially during class sessions in which I lecture for most of the class. Because of these comments, I have adjusted my course schedules so that lecture-heavy class sessions are broken up by informal discussions, in-class exercises, or other activities.
In the spring of 2013, a peer evaluator for Digital Image Manipulation I noticed that some students “lagged behind” during technical demonstrations and were distracted by technology unrelated to class activities. The evaluator suggested that I become more physically engaged with students during technical demonstrations by walking around the room more often. This simple piece of advice will help as I work to keep students focused on course material and free from the many distractions in the computer lab.
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