Mid-quarter surveys are a great tool for gathering feedback from your students about what is and isn’t working in your course in real time. Although course evaluations at the end of the quarter will provide you with full-course student input, mid-quarter surveys can inform potential mid-course changes.
To help facilitate this, the Teaching and Learning Hub has created modifiable templates that you or a member of your instructional team can easily add to your course. Students will be able to provide feedback anonymously.
Steps to Collect Student Feedback in Your Course
1. Decide which survey to use
Select one of the following options:
Both the online and printable survey formats are designed to collect anonymous feedback and are available in short and long versions.
The short version has the following questions:
- What is going well in this course and contributes to your learning?
- What could use improvement? Please provide specific suggestions that you would make for change.
- Thus far, how effective do you think the course has been in achieving its learning goals?
- Please share any additional comments below.
The long version has all of the short version questions (above) and the following:
- How have you found the pace of the course?
- How has it been to learn the concepts of the course?
- How many hours have you spent per week on this course?
- How can we improve participation?
- What can you, as a student, do to make this course even more successful?
The VPSA website describes other survey templates in use at the university, which you are free to choose.
In general, we recommend keeping the survey anonymous and short with clear questions that are focused on the items that are most important to you. Feel free to use the questions that are in the Teaching and Learning Hub’s surveys as a template or a starting point.
2. Implement the survey
- If you decide to use a Teaching and Learning Hub survey, follow the tips below for the version that you are using:
- Printable survey. Download and print the desired survey (full-page short version, half-page short version, long version).
- Online Canvas-based survey. Contact us to let us know which survey version (short or long) you would like to use and the timeframe for your survey. We will integrate the Canvas-based survey in your course so that you can share with your students (see Step 3).
- Self-service Canvas survey. Mid-quarter feedback surveys can also be added to your course directly via Canvas Commons, without submitting a request. To add a survey to your course directly via Canvas Commons:
- Select ‘Commons’ on the red menu on the left side of your Canvas window (you will need to authorize if you have never used Commons before), and search for ‘GSB’.
- Select ‘Import/Download’ for either survey template (‘GSB Mid-Quarter Feedback Survey – Short Template’ or GSB Mid-Quarter Feedback Survey – Long Template’) to add it to your course. After you import the feedback survey, it will appear in the Quizzes section in your Canvas course.
- Update any instructions, edit any questions, add due dates, and publish the survey.
- You can then share it with your students (see Step 3).
- If you decide to use a VPSA survey or create your own survey, follow the tips on VPSA’s website on course evaluations and/or use your favorite survey tool.
3. Request feedback from your students
- Printable survey
- Allow for ~5 minutes during class.
- Provide the students with a short description of the survey and its importance to you.
- Distribute the survey and request that students complete it before leaving.
- Canvas-based survey
- Send an announcement with a link to the survey to your students asking them to complete the survey by your deadline. Suggested announcement:
Your feedback and suggestions are very important. Please take five minutes to complete this survey by [insert your deadline here]. Answers to the survey are anonymous, so please be honest while showing the respect required by Stanford’s Fundamental Standard. Provide responses for this course only. Thank you.
- We have found that you will have a higher response rate when class time is set aside for students to complete the survey.
4. Review and respond in a timely fashion
- Once you have reviewed your student feedback, respond to the feedback in a timely manner to let your students know what you have learned, and what changes you plan to make in response. Hearing a summary of the entire class’s feedback helps students understand how their individual experience fits into the bigger picture. For instance, students who find the course too slow might be surprised to learn that many of their peers find it too fast. Sharing at least a couple of small changes you plan to make also helps students to feel more motivated and engaged.
- For more information, see the Responding to Online Feedback page provided by the Office of the Vice Provost for Student Affairs or reach out to us for a consultation.