Teaching observations

From the 2013-2014 academic session the requirement for teaching observations to be submitted as a report for all cases of academic promotion and review has been incorporated into the Head of Department's comments in their submitted Statement. In accordance with the recommendations of the Teaching Task Force for fuller information on teaching to be provided for academic promotions and reviews, the Promotions Committee still expects departmental teaching observations to be carried out, and expects this to be declared on the Head of Department's Statement. However, the submission of the form as part of the evidence to the Promotions Committee is no longer required.

Teaching Observations:  Interim Review

A departmental teaching observation should be completed for all cases of Interim Review, and the results incorporated into the Head of Department's Statement in support of the review. The deadline for submission of the Head of Department's Statement for Interim Review candidates to Human Resources can be found in Review and Promotion Guidance 2014-2015|

The teaching observation will normally be conducted by the Head of Department or his/her nominee – wherever possible it will be expected that nominees will be drawn from the list of teaching prize winners (Major Review Teaching Prizes; post-Major Review; National Teaching Fellowships; LSE Teaching Excellence Awards) Heads of Department may contact The Teaching and Learning Centre|  for the names of prize recipients in their departments.

Teaching Observations: Major Review

Two  teaching observations are required to be completed in preparation of Major Review cases: one departmental, and one conducted by the Teaching and Learning Centre (TLC) (see the Review and Promotion Guidance|

The dual track observation requirement for Major Review recognises that the Major Review is one of the most significant stages in an individual's career in the School, and reflects the importance the School places on Major Review decisions.  The dual teaching observations will also act to fulfil part of the requirements for completion of the associate level programme of the Postgraduate Certificate in Higher Education.

The departmental teaching observation should be used to inform the Head of Department's comments on the candidate's teaching in the Head of Department's Statement and will not be submitted to the Promotions Committee. TLC will submit their teaching observation directly to Human Resources

Human Resources is responsible for notifying TLC of the schedule of Major Reviews each session and will liaise with TLC in order to arrange the submission of reports.

The deadline for submission of Major Review teaching observation reports to Human Resources can be found in Review and Promotion Guidance|. The Head of Department is responsible for submitting this information to Human Resources.

Teaching Observations: Promotion

A departmental teaching observation report is required to be completed in preparation of promotion cases. The departmental teaching observation should be used to inform the Head of Department's comments on the candidate's teaching in the Head of Department's Statement and will not be submitted to the Promotions Committee. 

The deadline for submission of the Head of Department's Statement to Human Resources can be found in Review and Promotion Guidance|. The Head of Department is responsible for submitting this information to Human Resources.

For further information please see theReview and Promotion Guidance|.

The teaching observation should be carried out by the Head of Department only, and not delegated to another department member.

In cases of self-sponsored promotion, TLC will be requested by Human Resources, on behalf of the Promotions Committee, to carry out an additional teaching observation for the candidate.

Procedure

The observer should arrange a short meeting or make contact by email with the teacher before the session to ascertain and clarify the objectives for the session, and obtain background on the student group.

The observer and teacher should review the Teaching Observation Form together and note particular areas of observation to be highlighted. The observer should also ask the teacher whether there is any particular aspect they would like feedback on.

The observer should arrange a debrief with the teacher after the session.  It will be expected that the observer will let the teacher see the feedback before it is submitted to Human Resources on the Teaching Observation Form. The teacher will be free to append any additional relevant comments.

Advice should be sought from TLC in cases where the teaching observation raises any issues of concern or where further support may be required - for example, training/coaching/other forms of support. Where appropriate, the Head of Department may request that a further teaching observation be conducted by TLC. It is expected that departments will be proactive in seeking advice from TLC in this regard.

Recommendations for any follow-up action - including training/coaching/other forms of support should be recorded on the Teaching Observation form.

Promotions Committee

The results of the Teaching Observation will be provided to the Promotions Committee as part of the Head of Department's Statement.  The Promotions Committee reserves the right to address any issues of poor teaching with the candidate's Head of Department.

In cases where the Promotions Committee's view is that the quality of the candidate's teaching performance presents an obstacle to a successful outcome, the Promotions Committee reserves the right to seek the advice of the Pro Director, Teaching and Learning before reaching a decision on the case.

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