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Instructor-related Course Evaluation

Instructor-related course evaluations are regularly conducted at the School of Veterinary Medicine by means of a questionnaire geared toward determining teaching expertise. This questionnaire is based on indicators of good academic teaching. It gives instructors feedback from the student’s viewpoint regarding individual courses, along with an individual overview of areas where further growth in their skills may be needed.

As a basic principle, instructors at the School of Veterinary Medicine are free to evaluate any number of their own courses at any time and obtain individual feedback on them.

For the subjects in the fields listed in Annex 1 to the German Veterinary Medical Licensure Law (Verordnung zur Approbation von Tierärztinnen und Tierärzten – TAppV) and the organ modules, the school requires instructor-related course evaluations that are performed according to certain rules and at certain intervals stipulated in the evaluation plan. This internal school requirement is to be understood as a minimum standard; it is up to the instructors if they wish to evaluate their courses repeatedly on a shorter schedule.

For newly appointed university instructors in the first year of their teaching activities at the School of Veterinary Medicine of Freie Universität Berlin, the course evaluation takes place during that first year. Those reapplying to work at the school or applying to extend their positions are required to provide proof of participation in a course evaluation.

It is recommended that the evaluation is carried out within the last third of the course (approx. 15 minutes). 

Registration for an instructor-related course evaluation takes place by way of a registration form. Instructors are asked to fill in the information regarding them personally and the course to which the evaluation refers. Registration for the evaluation takes place with the Advisor for University Studies and Teaching, who prepares the evaluation in line with the information provided and then sends it to the instructor.

Lecturer-related course evaluations are carried out digitally as online evaluations. Lecturers receive a QR code along with a link and token (access code). It is recommended to include the QR code in the course presentation/lecture materials. The students photograph/scan this and automatically access the online evaluation, which can be carried out using smartphones. Additionally, lecturers can store the QR code in the Blackboard course associated with the course. Alternatively, students can also access the evaluation via the access data (link & token) underneath the QR code.

Lecturers receive an individual analysis of their course evaluation in PDF format created by the Advisor for University Studies and Teaching. They are free to open a dialogue with students regarding the results of the evaluation.

The results of the course evaluation are also used to identify the nominees for the awards for excellent teaching.

In addition, the overall analyses of the evaluations are presented in aggregated and anonymized form to the Dean's Office as well as the competent committees (Education Commission and Faculty Council) and are published in the internal area of the school website.

Pursuant to section 10 (3) of the evaluation guidelines of Freie Universität Berlin, the analyses are not used to implement negative measures having to do with HR or personnel rules.

If lecturers identify existing qualification needs based on the instructor-related course evaluation, the university offers various support services.

At the Dahlem Center for Academic Teaching (DCAT), lecturers can complete a modular certificate program. The successful completion of all modules leads to the acquisition of the Higher Education Didactics Certificate of Freie Universität Berlin. In addition, teachers can attend individual workshops on all aspects of university teaching and learning according to their interests and take advantage of the advisory services on courses and teaching evaluations. Detailed information can be found on the website of the Dahlem Center for Academic Teaching (DCAT).

All individuals involved in implementing evaluation processes are obligated to comply with the rules and regulations on data protection and privacy, especially pursuant to the Higher Education Act for the State of Berlin (Berliner Hochschulgesetz – BerlHG) and the Berlin Data Protection Act (Berliner Datenschutzgesetz – BlnDSG).

For further information on preparations for and implementation and analysis of the instructor-related course evaluations, please see the process description “Evaluation of teaching” (German version).