No relationship between student evaluation of teaching ratings and student learning

In many universities, students are asked to evaluate the quality of the teacher and of some other aspects of courses they have followed. Recently, a meta- evaluation has been conducted focused on the question if students will learn more from ‘good’ teachers. The main conclusions from this research study were:

“Students do not learn more from professors with higher student evaluation of teaching (SET) ratings.” ……. .”Re-analyses of previous meta-analyses of multisection studies indicate that SET ratings explain at most 1% of variability in measures of student learning. New meta-analyses of multisection studies show that SET ratings are unrelated to student learning.”According to the authors: “these findings suggest that institutions focused on student learning and career success may want to abandon SET ratings as a measure of faculty’s teaching effectiveness.”

The authors do not question the usefulness of course evaluation. But they raise an interesting discussion point about whether the results of course evaluation by students should be used in the assessment of university teachers.

The concept text of the article is on-line available: Uttl, et al. Meta-analysis of faculty’s teaching effectiveness: Student evaluation of teaching ratings and student learning are not related, Studies in Educational Evaluation (2016),

Here you can find the article.