The following is an excerpt from KRISTINA MITCHELL | March 19, 2018 | Slate.com |
Imagine that you’re up for a promotion at your job, but before your superior decides whether you deserve it, you have to submit the comments section of an internet article that was written about you for assessment.
Sound a little absurd?
That’s in essence what we ask professors in higher education to do when they submit their teaching evaluations in their tenure and promotion portfolios. At the end of each semester, students are asked to fill out an evaluation of their professor. Typically, they are asked both to rate their professors on an ordinal scale (think 1–5, 5 being highest) and provide written comments about their experience in the course.
In many cases, these written evaluations end up sounding more like something out of an internet comments section than a formal assessment of a professor’s teaching. Everything from personal attacks to text-speak (“GR8T CLASS!”) to sexual objectification has been observed by faculty members who dare to read their evaluation comments at the end of the semester.
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