Step 5 - Evaluate
One systematic way for ensuring and developing educational quality is through student evaluations, specifically course evaluations and exit polls.
Karolinska Institutet is responsible for ensuring and developing educational quality. Quality assurance and quality enhancement are central to the improvement of the educational quality provided by our study programmes. One systematic way to achieve this is through student evaluations, specifically course evaluations and exit polls.
Student evaluations will enable us to monitor the extent to which we have attained our internationalisation goals.
In course evaluations students can contribute to the improvement of the quality of a course and/or a study programme and to help the institution further develop. Specifically, course evaluations fulfil two main functions, which are:
- Students can reflect upon their education in a structured manner; and
- Course evaluations provide a foundation for enhancing the quality of teaching and learning.
Higher education institutions shall enable students who are participating in or have completed a course to express their experiences of and views on the course through a course evaluation to be organised by the higher education institution. The higher education institution shall collate the course evaluations and provide information about their results and any actions prompted by the course evaluations. The results shall be made available to the students.
Five general questions
Course evaluations at KI include five general questions common to all courses. However, the programme director can add extra questions that are specific and relevant to the programme as a whole. Moreover, the course leader can also choose additional questions specific and relevant to their course to add to the course evaluation.
An open question
Course evaluations are a very useful way to learn about what the students think about a course, measuring different aspects of it. It is always important to include an open question at the end of the questionnaire, to capture ideas/suggestions/problems that students might have. Students’ answers to an open question may lead to knowledge of issues that might have gone lost if the questionnaire did not include open questions. Students might bring up issues that the teacher or the programme might not have been previously aware of. Therefore, the teachers can choose to add a question or more to help them further explore what students think about their course. This can be done both at the programme and the course level.
Question database (Question bank)
The question bank for course evaluation, is divided into 10 different target areas (relevance, constructive alignment, feedback etc.) related to education. These areas are further divided into aspects, which are "translated" into questions/items, to measure how students perceive quality in education. Frågebanken has been recently updated with an additional target area regarding digital web-based learning.
Frågebanken is a dynamic document and is updated on a regular basis. For the time being, only the Swedish version is available. Even though there is no English version of the ten target areas, we are more than happy to support the teachers in translating the questions or creating new ones. The area for digital teaching is available in both languages.
As a result of this project, we have been working on updating Frågebanken with additional educational competences such as intercultural competence, global health, language skills, international disciplinary learning and sustainable education. These areas will include items/questions that teachers and programmes can add to their course and programme evaluations and will be available soon in both Swedish and English.
In order to gain better understanding of how students perceive the quality of their education, study programmes have the possibility to follow educational quality as seen by their students, even in post-degree surveys (exit polls).
Exit polls are conducted for all degree programmes and consist of 22 general questions. Programs have the possibility, as in course evaluations, to add program-specific questions to these surveys. We have created a question bank with relevant areas to assist our study programmes in formulating and incorporating questions according to their specific needs.