The School surveys students about their teaching in the Michaelmas and Lent Terms. The questions ask students about their class/seminar teaching, about their lectures, and about their courses as a whole. Students are also invited to provide overall comments on the positive and negative aspects of the teaching they are receiving.
The results from these surveys are used in a number of ways. They give teachers feedback on their teaching performance; they highlight strengths in their teaching competencies; and they flag those areas in which they might improve.
Heads of Departments receive the teaching survey results of their staff members. Where individual teachers score poorly, the Head helps to put support and development arrangements in place. These can include coaching and mentoring from the Teaching and Learning Centre, or tuition from the Language Centre, for example.
The School also uses the survey results as a measure of its teaching quality. The Academic and Student Affairs Committee (ASC) reviews course survey results. Survey results also form part of the data set departments are asked to consider as part of the annual programme monitoring exercise. In this way, student feedback can influence how a course is delivered. Survey results also help the School to reward teaching excellence. For example, a teacher's survey results are an important set of evidence considered by the Promotions and Review Committee.