To begin, we will define instructor as someone who instructs any given academic course or course section. At the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, this can include faculty, adjunct faculty, lecturers and GTAs (graduate teaching assistants).
As an instructor, you will play an active part throughout the course evaluation deployment process. Before evaluations are deployed, you will help to ensure course data accuracy, and have the option to add a course-level survey to the main campus survey. During course evaluations, you will be monitoring response rates and encouraging students to complete their evaluations. After the course evaluations have been completed and the term is over, you will be able to access, process, and share result reports.
How can I access Course Evaluations & Surveys?
There are 2 ways to access your CES dashboard.
- Log in to Canvas
- Enter (one of) your current term course(s)
- On the left navigation menu, click Instructor Course Evaluations
- Your CES dashboard should automatically appear on the Canvas page
Direct Access via E-mail Link
- Open the "Your student's evaluations are deploying soon" e-mail that's sent to you about 1 month before end-of-semester deployment
(Watch this short video describing the contents of this e-mail)
- Click the link in the Access section of that e-mail
- Ask for a link by submitting a request in the CES Support Request Form.
(Note: If you have a Canvas presence, Canvas is the preferred access method. Use this e-mail link only if Canvas is down or running slow.)
Full Term and "Mini" Course Evaluations Preparation
Communicate with your Department Administrator for Course Data Accuracy
Before course evaluations can be deployed, steps need to be in place to ensure the correct courses and instructors are evaluated. To facilitate this process, your designated department administrator should contact you each term about how your courses will be evaluated. When you communicate with your department admin, help them with the following:
- Which courses you are teaching that will be evaluated
- Some courses such as independent study, field study, doctoral, masters, etc. are not evaluated in some departments. Check with your department admin if you have questions whether your course should be evaluated.
- When your course will be evaluated
- If your course starts and ends with the current term, no further information is necessary.
- If your course follows a non-standard term, such as a mini-course, please inform your department admin as soon as possible at the beginning of the term so they can set the proper start and end deployment dates for your course.
- Who will be evaluated –Inform your department admin of any of the following scenarios that might apply to your course.
- Do you teach a lecture course and your TA facilitates a lab or recitation section?
- Do you teach as a team with your TA and you will both be evaluated?
- Are you and your TA both listed as instructors but you only want your TA to be evaluated or vice versa?
- Do you co-teach a course that is instructed the first half by one person and the second half by another, and you are wanting the first half to be evaluated right at the midterm?
- Are there multiple instructors in the Canvas course shell, but only certain ones get evaluated?
- Any specific evaluation situations that are not listed above.
Adding Custom Questions
Once your department has uploaded questions for the end-of-term course evaluation, you will have the opportunity to add other questions you would like your students to answer. You'll need to vet any questions with your department chairperson before you can add them. Please refer to the "Your student's evaluations are deploying soon" e-mail sent to you about 1 month before deployment for more information.
All questions must be finalized and attached to their specific courses in the project before the evaluation is deployed. When a survey has been deployed, it is not possible to add, remove, or change any of the survey questions. On your CES dashboard, you can see your access start and end dates and times in the "Custom Question Surveys" tool.
The Manage Courses area provides you with important information about your course evaluations before and during deployment. You can see which courses are going to be deployed, during which dates, and which surveys are attached to the course.
Watching this video will explain the information you have available in Manage Courses. NOTE: The Manage Courses area is available to instructors until the last day of deployment (survey end date) for your course(s) each term.
Recommended CES Video Tutorials & Help Articles
In CES, click the question mark icon (?) at the top right of your screen to find the Help Center.
Video & Help Article Combined:
Mid-Term Course Evaluations
The versatile nature of the survey questions and centralized data are a couple of benefits for using CES for your mid-term evaluations. All results generated from mid-term evaluations will, in most situations, only be accessible to you; your department administrators, department chairs or other college leaders will not have access to these results.
If you would be interested in implementing a mid-term course evaluation via CES, contact us at 402-472-2313 or fill out the CES Support Web Form. Please allow for a minimum of two weeks before the scheduled deployment date for development and set up.
When will course evaluations be deployed?
In most instances, end of term evaluations will be scheduled to deploy in the final two weeks of the semester, ending the last day of classes. This deployment window varies during summer sessions, depending on the length of the session. For non-standard term courses (mini-courses), the course evaluation window will be shorter (again, depnding on the length of the course), but still ending the last day of classes.
Monitoring Response Rates
Whether the end-of-term or mid-term course evaluations, you will have access to view – in real time – how many students have taken and have yet to take the course evaluation.
You can access the Response Rate Tracker in CES’s online dashboard, found in the upper right corner.
Note: Response rates are displayed anonymously. The ability to see who has and who has not responded to course evaluations, which is mentioned in the "Response Rate Tracker " Help Article, has been disabled.
Increasing Response Rates
In addition to a few technology prompts within CES, it is recommended that you be your own advocate for increasing response rates in your course. Here are a few methods that other instructors have tried with noticeable success:
- Talk with your students in person, or via Canvas Course Announcement, Canvas Messenger, and email, before course evaluations are deployed. Encourage your students to begin thinking about what they would like to share with you in their evaluations.
- Explain why course evaluations are important and what it means to you, and for you, that they complete course evaluations.
- Share with students some examples of how you have integrated feedback from past course evaluations into your teaching or course design/structure.
- Provide students with some guidance on how to write meaningful feedback. You can refer them here for a guide on best practices for feedback writing.
- Set aside time in class for students to complete their course evaluations. Give them notice in advance asking them to bring their devices to class specifically for completing them.
Recommended CES Video Tutorials & Help Articles
Access and View Reports
Reports can be accessed 15 days after a Spring or Fall session ends (11 days after a summer session ends). An e-mail will arrive telling you they are available. Once these reports are viewable, you can generate a detailed report with or without comments (as PDF), a short report with or without comments (as PDF), or raw data (as an Excel file).
How do I view reports?
Video Tutorial & Help Article Combined:
Report Builder Function
A great feature of CES is the Report Builder. This feature can isolate data and generate specific reports at the course-, instructor-, or question-level if need be. Create custom reports specific for your department or college with this feature.
How do I build reports?
In addition to creating a report, you can share the reports through CES. Simply click the “Share” icon on the right hand side of a report and follow the prompt to share the report with users in CES or send it to their email.
How do I share reports?
After deployments end and reports become available, CES can support a dialogue between instructors an administrators about those results.
How do I give and receive feedback?
Where can I access CES Video Tutorials and Help Articles?
Accessing CES’s Help Center videos and articles is account-specific, so it is not possible to provide links. To access CES’s Help Center, access your CES dashboard using Canvas (desktop or mobile app). From your dashboard in the upper right hand corner, click on the small purple question mark icon (?) to access the Help Center.
How many questions can I add to the course evaluation?
This is going to be department-specific. Check with your department chairperson or administrator to verify the number of course-level questions you can add to the main campus survey.
Can I set a day and time to deliver the evaluations in class?
Yes, We will also set a survey window to be open near semester's end--specifically two weeks before finals, ending the last day of classes. During the summer, the survey window will generally be open during the last week of the term. Students are notified of the survey window by e-mail and Canvas notification. If you want your students to take the evaluation all at once during a class, you will need to set expectations in advance, such as encouraging them not to take the evaluation until the designated class time.