Mid-Semester Evaluation Program

Mid-Semester Evaluations (MSE) are a discovery process that solicits feedback from students and faculty on the important aspects and possible positive changes for the student learning experience.

MSE Goal

To provide faculty with an opportunity for in-depth mid-semester feedback from students that focuses on important aspects of the teaching and learning elements of their course

MSE Outcomes

  • Identify at least two major strengths of the course/teaching practice (what is helping students learn)
  • Integrate at least one area for change into your course/teaching practice

MSE Stages Soils 360 Class at Oak Woodland restoration soils characterization near Kneeland

  1. Stage 1: Interview between a trained facilitator and the interested instructor. Important aspects of a course are discussed and instructor’s questions are addressed
  2. Stage 2: Interview of the students by the facilitator. The instructor is not present.
    Ten minutes: Students meet in small groups to identify strengths and areas for change in the course
    Ten minutes: The class comes together and clarifies the ideas discussed in the small groups and the facilitator works toward a consensus among the students
  3. Stage 3: Interview between the facilitator and the instructor. Comments and suggestions are discussed and concrete changes are considered. The instructor has complete freedom to decide what to do with the input. It is important that they will consider change whenever it is to everyone’s mutual advantage. The process is strictly confidential and entirely separate from retention and tenure.
  4. Stage 4: Instructor shares feedback with students as an opportunity to discuss the ways of learning (closing the loop in this process). This helps to establish trust and tell students that you value their input.
  5. Stage 5: (Optional) The instructor meets with CTL staff to discuss approaches and adjustments in teaching or course.

This service [MSE] was helpful to understand the needs of my students while maintaining a rigorous course with quality assignments. For instance, I made changes to a homework assignment that I had introduced in the Spring 2016 semester for my Learning and Motivation courses. This new assignment was inspired by comments from the student evaluations from the previous semester. The changes I made to the assignment were well received, as evidenced through my student evaluations. It is important to students that their instructors acknowledge their thoughts and suggestions as it empowers them to take a more active role in their own education. This in turn may make students more invested in the class. I was happy that my students noticed and appreciated my efforts to work with them, as one student’s evaluation comment says, “Dr. Sanchez is a  teacher that is really open to feedback from her class. Throughout the year she allowed her students to provide feedback and she listened. I noticed that she would change some of the class structure to help the flow. She has done an amazing job!” (Spring 2016).” - Mari Sanchez, Psychology

"The mid-semester evaluation process was very user-friendly, informative, and felt like class time well spent. It was helpful to get student feedback when there is still time in the semester to respond and make changes. In response to student feedback through these evaluations, I now write more on the whiteboard, talk more slowly, and hold review sessions before each exam. These evaluations are nice in that you feel compelled to make changes and respond to the critiques because the students know you heard their feedback and expect to see some adjustments.” - Lucy Kerhoulas, Forestry and Wildland

“Mid-Semester Evaluations helped me to see the students’ perceptions on course strengths, weaknesses, and needs. Once I had it, I incorporated them into my next half of teaching and finally my overall evaluation was 4.5 out of 5.0. Therefore, MSE is really important to instructors to get the feedback from students early and then improve the teaching the next half of the semester.” - Buddihika Madurapperuma, Environmental Science Management

Mid-semester evaluations have been offered at HSU since 1997, pioneered and faciliated by Dr. Diane Johnson, Department of Mathematics. As we continue this incredible program at HSU, we are building on its benefits by looking at long-term impact on student success.

To have an MSE, please contact the CTL and provide your department, course name, enrollment, days/times course meets, and preferred time(s) for an MSE facilitator to come to your class.
Center for Teaching & Learning (CTL) at: ctl@humboldt.edu or call 707.826.6113 or 707.826.6112