Students Given Access to CIOS Results
At the end of each semester, students are asked to fill out Course Instructor Opinion Surveys (CIOS) for each course they took. Instructors, TAs, school chairs, and administrators use the results of the surveys to measure students’ perceptions of a course and its instructor. Now, students also have access to CIOS results dating back to 2010. Note that many courses do not have data for the Spring 2020 semester, when Georgia Tech conducted the Emergency Remote Teaching and Learning Survey instead.
Data is available for courses whose CIOS response rate was greater than 30% for a given semester. Students can view average values for each question that required a numerical answer (usually on a scale from 1-5), including overall instructor effectiveness, overall course effectiveness, and the average hours per week spent on the course. Students do not have access to the comments written in the surveys.
Students have had access to the CIOS scores in the past, as granted by the Faculty Handbook. The Task Force on Teaching Effectiveness discovered that students currently did not have access and sought to restore it.
From there, Bonnie Ferri, vice provost for Graduate Education and Faculty Development and data trustee of CIOS information, the Office of Academic Effectiveness (OAE), and the Student Government Association (SGA) teamed up to make the idea a reality. They spent the 2019-20 academic year working with SmartEvals, the company that hosts the CIOS each semester, to develop a dashboard capable of displaying the data.
While other programs like Tech’s Course Critique or the third-party Rate My Professors show grade distributions and student opinions about a professor, respectively, SGA and OAE see the CIOS as a more complete data set that reflects how students felt about a specific course.
“The Course Instructor Opinion Survey is just that: an opinion survey,” said Loraine Philips, associate provost for Academic Effectiveness. “It’s designed to capture students’ perceptions of their learning experiences in a course.”
“By opening up CIOS information to students, I believe it will allow for a greater understanding of the courses they may choose to enroll in, as well as their past enrollments,” added Jackson Caruso, academic affairs vice president for SGA. “My hope is that it will also encourage more students to complete their surveys.”
Learn more about what data different groups can access, as well as how to do so, here.