SEI Changes Further Discussed

Photo by Robin Weinstein.
Photo by Robin Weinstein.
Photo by Robin Weinstein.

Student senators are looking to make changes to the current Student Evaluation of Instruction (SEI).

Senator Zachary Grossman said he is hoping to make the SEI a more helpful source for professors so they will be able to implement changes for future semesters.

“[We’re looking] to make the SEIs more informative and less evaluative,” Grossman said.

Grossman said he would like to see the SEI answers expanded beyond the current “agree, strongly agree” options.

Grossman said senators as well as administrators in Academic Affairs are in favor of a number system, where students will be able to answer questions on a scale of one to 10. In addition, Grossman said there would ideally be a small section available at the end of each question where students can add comments to provide context to the answers.

Grossman met with Academic Affairs on Wednesday, April 30 and discussed the proposed changes.

“It’s just an idea for now,” he said.

Grossman said Academic Affairs asked him and other senators to prepare a “very rough draft” by the end of this semester and a second draft by the end of the fall 2014 semester.

Grossman said both senators and the Academic Affairs committee are in favor of adding an optional “mid-term course feedback,” giving students the opportunity to answer specific questions about the course, how professors can improve for the remainder of the semester and how effective certain assignments were.

There has been a decline in the SEI responses in the last several years, which Grossman said might be connected to the SEIs move to an online format in 2010.

A part of Grossman’s plan is to make SEIs mandatory, but keep them anonymous.