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What exactly do student evaluations measure?

Philip Stark, professor of statistics | October 21, 2013

“If you can’t prove what you want to prove, demonstrate something else and pretend that they are the same thing. In the daze that follows the collision of statistics with the human mind, hardly anybody will notice the difference.” -D. Huff (1954) To a great extent, this is what the academy does with student evaluations … Continue reading »

Do student evaluations measure teaching effectiveness?

Philip Stark, professor of statistics | October 14, 2013

Since 1975, course evaluations at Berkeley have included the following question: Considering both the limitations and possibilities of the subject matter and course, how would you rate the overall teaching effectiveness of this instructor? 1 (not at all effective), 2, 3, 4 (moderately effective), 5, 6, 7 (extremely effective) Among faculty, student evaluations of teaching … Continue reading »