Universiteit Leiden

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Theme: Course evaluations

The Faculty Board and the Educational Directors feel that within FGGA we should and could deal more sensibly with what is in itself a good instrument: course evaluations.

A discussion paper was drafted in early 2023 in which many stakeholders were heard. It contains five recommendations that fit within the frameworks that exist within Leiden University. This is not about a fundamentally different way of doing course evaluations, but a cultural change in how we deal with these course evaluations within FGGA.

After discussing the discussion paper on course evaluations and the proposed areas for improvement within the various institutes, there is now a follow-up in the form of an action agenda. In this action agenda you will find a list of points for each point of improvement that we are planning to work on over the next six months. View the action agenda for the FGGA course evaluations project here (in Dutch). 

Do you have any suggestions, or would you like to participate? We would love to hear from you! Please feel free to contact Dianne Karkdijk and Annemarie Bouwman.

One area for improvement is raising awareness among students about the role and use of student evaluations. Over the summer, we created two videos explaining course evaluations. Students often do not know what subject evaluations are for and what is done with the outcomes. As a result, evaluation forms are not always given the attention they deserve. In addition, comments and criticism are sometimes included on the form that have nothing to do with the course itself. This is not only annoying for individual lecturers but can even render the outcome of some the course evaluations useless.

Through these videos, we want to familiarise students with the use of course evaluations in their courses, and make it clear to them that their feedback is important - for the lecturer, for the OLC and for the course as a whole. It is important that students complete the evaluation form in a constructive way.

By providing both context on how to use the results of the evaluation forms, and some guidance on how to fill in the forms, we hope that students will fill in the form in a more serious and constructive way.

These videos will be used in Block 1 2023-2024 as part of the skill lab sessions within the Mentor programme of the Bachelor of Public Administration and during the Skills Lab 1 course of the Bachelor Security Studies. These sessions focus on topics such as code of conduct or peer review and giving feedback, so this is a good time to also discuss the course evaluations. The video may prompt further discussion in the group.

Video Security Studies

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Video Public Administration

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