A new pilot scheme that allows students to give module feedback online may be rolled out across campus if enough students participate in the initial trials. A lecturer from the Centre for Teaching and Learning, Paul Surgenor, has been working on the project since its inception in June 2009 and is urging students to participate.
Currently, each of UCD’s five Colleges has a number of schools taking part in the programme. Students who are eligible for the programme will be sent an email from the Teaching and Learning Centre with a link bringing them to a custom-built site where they can complete the online feedback form, as well as detailed instructions on how to complete the online feedback for their module. The form has certain set questions, but also allows module co-ordinators to add their own specific questions should they wish.
Surgenor emphasised the importance of student participation, saying “we need students. This is a service for students and a chance for them to have their say.” The scheme had a 25 per cent uptake last year, and Surgenor is keen to have this raised dramatically. He told The University Observer “if people don’t participate, it’s not going to happen again,” but that “if we do this and it works, it will become a universal policy.”
The lecturer was also quick to stress the ease of usage of the scheme, saying the process “literally takes three minutes to do.” Similarly, the scheme saves resources and administration costs as module feedback forms do not have to printed out and the data is automatically compiled for lecturers instead of many forms having to be processed. Lecturers will not receive the feedback until after modules and exams are finished and all feedback is completely anonymous.
Surgenor emphasised the importance of student feedback, saying that last year’s feedback was “very constructive.” He is hopeful that the scheme can be implemented around the college but emphasised that this depended on student participation.