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Composite Rating

The Composite Student Rating is calculated from the responses to the first five questions—questions that derive from what the literature tells us about the instructional behaviors that are most predictive of student learning.

It differs from the old tool in that it is not a general impression of instructor effectiveness. However, the Composite Student Rating correlates well (.98) with the old Overall Instructor item.

Composite Rating - FAQ

  • No, in many cases the sample size is too small to define an outlier.

  • No, only the five questions pertaining to instructor effectiveness are included in the composite numbers reported in the top right of the reports. Aims questions are statistically separate factors and are thus reported separately.

  • Each set of questions has its own method to portray comparative performance. For the first five items, we have a section Composite Score and uncertainty range that compare to the score and range for the department (upper right corner of the report). The responses to questions about the Aims (section and department) are shown graphically with green and blue bars. Comparisons between section and department are possible in both cases, but those comparisons are reported  differently (for statistical reasons).

  • The historical average is the course average for all current and prior semesters including all instructors.  Currently, this captures a period of one or two semesters, depending on whether or not the new ratings instrument was used winter semester 2015.  In the future, the historical average will be computed over a three-year window.

  • Section is defined as the uncertainty range of the composite score of the 5 instructor items and is considered the overall instructor rating. Multiple sections of a class (taught by the same instructor on the same day at the same time, in the same location, during the same block) are compiled into the same overall instructor rating. For example, if an instructor teaches a course with 10 sections all linked to the same class (i.e. same day, same time, same location, and same block), these are considered one section. However, any time there is a unique date or time or location, a distinct section is reported representing a unique overall instructor rating. Cross listed courses each have their own ratings reports.

    Course is defined as the weighted average composite instructor rating for all instructors who taught the course that semester (i.e. different sections of the course). It is NOT a rating of the course. For example, if five instructors teach distinct sections of a course in each semester, “course” represents the weighted average of the five composite instructor ratings. The reason it is only one number instead of a range is because of the limitations in the current software used to create the statistical calculations.

    Department is the uncertainty range of the composite instructor ratings for all instructors for all courses taught in that department at that level.

    College is the uncertainty range of the instructor ratings for all instructors for all sections taught in that college at that level.

    University is the weighted average of the composite instructor ratings for all courses at the university at that level.

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