Opinion: Should students grade their professors?


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Teachers grade their students all the time, but should students get to grade their professors? If students grade their professors it would provide feedback, ultimately helping teachers and in turn the students.

Teachers have always been judged by how many of their students pass their classes. It is obvious that students’ grades don’t prove what’s going on in classrooms, so teachers are also being examined. One of the most controversial of these measures is student evaluations of their teachers. So, should students be able to grade their teachers?

Yes, students grading their teachers would provide teachers with information on how to improve their teaching styles. Students need teachers to help them learn better and this would be a good way of making that process faster. Kosman Rajapaksha, assistant professor of mathematics and statistics, and Abigail Rowe, a freshman in nursing, both expressed their opinion on whether students should grade their professors or not.

Kosman elaborated that grading teachers can be effective as they will get a chance to improve themselves. They can learn how students view them and improve if there are any drawbacks in their teaching style. However, there are some downsides. With this system, students will get a chance to wrongly evaluate the professors. For example, if they get a low score because they didn’t, blame the teacher for the bad grade and score them badly. But students can provide good feedback if they are honest.

“Evaluation is really important and it should be evaluated on the basis of the class classifying as worst, not good, very good and excellent. It depends on students and on class if students honestly grade their professors or not. In most of the cases students grade their students honestly but it totally depends on the situation. Like some students just don’t come to class and if they get mad at their professors, they can evaluate their professor anything. So that is something of a drawback,” said Kosman.

Rowe added her thoughts on the system.

“Yes, students should grade their professors and let the professors know what teaching styles they prefer so they will succeed in class or they need to find another professor who will meet their needs. Professor should be graded on how well they explain the materials if they’re more of a visual teacher, so they draw pictures, or they come up with different types of examples, or if you’re able to understand what they’re saying because I know there’s lots of teachers that I don’t understand,” said Rowe.

According to Abigail, professors do take feedback and they change things to make the class easier for the students and better fit the students needs. Most students are fair and honest about grading as they need to be better in their subject.

Student surveys are used not only to judge how well the students believe they are being treated compared to their peers and how well they believe they are progressing in their education, but also on more esoteric measurements, such as how well teachers are connecting with them.

As part of the “multiple measures” approach it is hard to deny that student opinion is rarely heard. Most of the individuals in a classroom are the students. They are going to be a valuable source of information about what is and isn’t working.

Even if you believe that student assessments of their teachers are necessary, do you believe that making them an integral part of judging teachers’ performance is a good idea?

Most people will agree that professors should be graded. Teachers are always there for their students and every professor wants their students to learn and do better in their lives. So, if their students are not understanding their teaching styles, they’ll surely change their style.

Edited by: Aja Carter and Rakesh Swarnakar