22 SES 09 A, Teaching, Learning and Assessment in Higher Education
There are different ways to measure the quality or/and effectiveness of University lectures. Student Evaluation is one relevant methodological approach to be mentioned. It can be considered as a possible strategy for universities to receive relevant feedback on teaching effectiveness. Despite the fact that the results of student evaluation are highly subjective and therefore connected with many biases, student ratings can provide reliable and valid data about perceived teaching quality and effectiveness (Murray, 1983). Student feedback helps to improve or to adjust study programs and curricula and is also very beneficial to the lecturers. Student’s perceptions have been also increasingly used as an important component in teaching evaluation, because they provide a valuable source of information in merit raises and promotion decisions (Jackson, Teal et al., 1999). The following study focuses primarily on the lecturers' behavior in regard to the overall rating of her/his teaching. The basic research question wants to throw a light on the connection between perceived teaching behavior of university lecturers and the overall rating from a student perspective. It reads as follows: To what extent can a lecturer behaviorally influence the overall rating of her/his lecture? Teaching effectiveness is not only reduced to the perception of content which is delivered by the lecturer but also contains the perception of the applied behavioral actions in order to transmit the knowledge. Students are influenced by the way a teacher acts in class and this perception has an impact on students’ ratings. Research in this area indicates that certain behavioral adjustments by the lecturer might increase the overall rating with disregard to content of the lecture at the same time. The so called Dr. Fox effect is the overriding influence of the instructor’s expressiveness on students’ evaluations of teaching (Marsh & Ware, 1982). Dr. Fox effect clarified, that students’ ratings can be manipulated to a more favorable evaluation, if the lecturer presents enthusiastically and expressively, even if the lecture lacks on adequate content coverage. Ware & Williams (1975; 1976) could relativize the Dr. Fox effect by differentiating between three incentive conditions (no incentive, before lecture, after lecture) and the overall rating. These results demonstrated empirically that lecturer's expressiveness does not unavoidable influence student ratings. However, when students were not given any incentives, the instructor’s expressiveness had a great impact on the overall rating. The findings in this research area indicate the consideration of three scales – expressive behaviors, clarity and rapport – in order to understand students’ perception of teaching quality. To answer the research question, a quasi-experimental design was chosen. The idea behind the research is it to demonstrate the influence of teacher’s behavior on the student’s perception of the quality of the teaching. Our hypothesis: Enthusiasm, clarity and rapport are predictors for the overall grade the lecturers´ receives from the studentt raters.
Jackson, D. L., Teal, C. R., Raines, S. J., Nansel, T. R., Force, R. C., & Burdsal, C. A. (1999). The Dimensions of Students' Perceptions of Teaching Effectiveness. Educational and Psychological Measurement, 59(4), 580–596. Marsh, H. W. (1980). The Influence of Student, Course, and Instructor Characteristics in Evaluations of University Teaching. American Educational Research Journal, 17(2), 219. Marsh, H. W. (1987). Students' evaluations of University teaching: Research findings, methodological issues, and directions for future research. International Journal of Educational Research, 11(3), 253–388. Marsh, H. W. (1994). Weighting for the right criteria in the Instructional Development and Effectiveness Assessment (IDEA) system: Global and specific ratings of teaching effectiveness and their relation to course objectives. Journal of Educational Psychology, 86(4), 631–648. Marsh, H. W., & Ware, J. E. (1982). Effects of expressiveness, content coverage, and incentive on multidimensional student rating scales: New interpretations of the Dr. Fox effect. Journal of Educational Psychology, 74(1), 126–134. Murray, H. G. (1983). Low-inference classroom teaching behaviors and student ratings of college teaching effectiveness. Journal of Educational Psychology, 75(1), 138–149 Shevlin, M., Banyard, P., Davies, M., & Griffiths, M. (2000). The Validity of Student Evaluation of Teaching in Higher Education: Love me, love my lectures? Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education, 25(4), 397–405. Ware, J. E., & Williams, R. G. (1975). The Dr. Fox effect: A study of lecturer effectiveness and ratings of instruction. Journal of Medical Education, 50(2), 149–156. Ware, J. E., & Williams, R. G. (1977). Discriminant Analysis of Student Ratings as a Means for Identifying Lecturers who Differ in Enthusiasm or Information-Giving. Educational and Psychological Measurement, 37(3), 627–639. Williams, R. G., & Ware, J. E. (1976). Validity of student ratings of instruction under different incentive conditions: A further study of the Dr. Fox effect. Journal of Educational Psychology, 68(1).
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