KIT has developed an empirical method that precisely determines the satisfaction of students with lectures and seminars. Students at KIT evaluate about 1500 lectures and seminars per semester. From the 50,000 questionnaires in total, Dr. Michael Craanen determines a teaching quality index (LQI) that reflects the satisfaction of students with every lecture and seminar. Three days upon the survey at the latest are the results passed on to the lecturer. The LQI concept is part of KIT’s quality management scheme. Soon, other universities may be granted a license for the use of this method.
“KIT’s LQI index classifies lectures and seminars according to the traffic light scheme,” says Dr. Michael Craanen from the KIT Planning and Controlling Service Unit, who has developed the system. “Green light indicates high acceptance by the students. Yellow and red lights, however, mean that a lecture or seminar is not received well by the students.” In contrast to conventional teaching evaluations, however, the LQI concept is not restricted to determining the status quo. “Our quality assurance system guarantees that the evaluation results are constantly used to improve our teaching efforts,” underlines Craanen. Deans are also informed about the results. Seminars with bad results will be examined by a studies commission. The evaluation that has been accomplished manually by Craanen and his colleagues so far met with wide interest in practice and on expert conferences and will be commercialized soon as an extension module of the EvaSys evaluation software. This module will automatically generate the reports. “Via our licensee, the company of Electric Paper Gesellschaft für Softwarelösung, Lüneburg, it will also be available to other universities,” says Dr. Dirk Feuchter from the KIT Innovation Management Service Unit.
The acceptance by students and students councils is enormous. 95 percent of the students complete and return their questionnaires. “This is a great rate,” underlines Craanen, “the students at KIT know that their evaluation is appreciated and has consequences.” Due to the rapid evaluation procedure, the results can be discussed with the lecturer during the next lesson already.
First effects of the evaluation with direct feedback are already apparent at KIT: “Since the introduction of the LQI concept in the 2008 summer semester, satisfaction of students with lectures and seminars has increased measurably. We will continue to observe and analyze them in the medium and long term,” underlines Professor Jürgen Becker, KIT Division Director for Studies and Teaching.
KIT’s LQI concept will be presented for the first time as a software at the EvaSys User Meeting 2010, which will take place at KIT from September 16 to 17. The organizers, the Electric Paper Gesellschaft für Softwarelösungen mbH and KIT, expect more than 100 participants from universities.
Being “The Research University in the Helmholtz Association”, KIT creates and imparts knowledge for the society and the environment. It is the objective to make significant contributions to the global challenges in the fields of energy, mobility, and information. For this, about 9,300 employees cooperate in a broad range of disciplines in natural sciences, engineering sciences, economics, and the humanities and social sciences. KIT prepares its 24,400 students for responsible tasks in society, industry, and science by offering research-based study programs. Innovation efforts at KIT build a bridge between important scientific findings and their application for the benefit of society, economic prosperity, and the preservation of our natural basis of life. KIT is one of the German universities of excellence.