Mid-semester surveys are an excellent tool for gathering student feedback for your course. Each of us probably has different things we want feedback on, making it hard to provide here a single mid-course evaluation tool that will work for every need.
The most important consideration is "What do you want to learn?" Do you want to know if students are finding the course readings to be helpful to them in understanding course concepts? Ask! Want to know if the feedback you are providing on assignments is helpful to their learning? Ask! Wonder if anyone finds the video clips you've created to be worthwhile? Ask!
The second consideration is how many questions to ask. Keep your mid-course survey short if you want to get valuable feedback. Too long and it can be daunting to complete and/or you might not get the meaningful responses you are looking for. Surveys can be as simple as the "Start-Stop-Continue" strategy where you ask your students to respond to three questions:
- What would you like us to stop doing in this course?
- What would you like us to start doing in this course?
- What would you like us to continue doing in this course?
Want more detailed feedback? Here is an example mid-course survey that uses a combination of scaled ratings and open-ended responses.
1. I have understood the subject materials covered up to this point in this course.
|2. The course materials are well prepared and carefully explained.|
|3. The instructor's explanations in e-mail and discussion forum postings are clear.|
|4. Students are encouraged to participate in class discussions.|
|5. The instructor responded to my questions within a reasonable time frame.|
|6. The feedback that I receive on graded assignments is valuable.|
|7. Methods of evaluating student work are fair and appropriate.|
|8. Quizzes assess course content as emphasized in the online materials, as well as by the instructor.|
|9. Optional course resources (e.g. external Web site links) contribute to my appreciation and understanding of the subject.|
Please also respond to the following open-ended questions:
10. What helped you learn in this course?
11. What changes would improve your learning?
Want more ideas? Search the web using terms like "online course mid-semester survey" and you'll find tons of examples that can help you create your own tool!