Graduate Seminar in Cellular and Molecular Regulation - Fall, 2003 - Stark

Assessment

Fot each presentation, each student (other than the presentor) wrote an evaluation and a grade. The course grade for each student was based on the average grade given by the peers, invariably an A. For the sake of useful feedback, the professor copied each evaluation with the evaluator's name deleted and gave these copies to the presentor. Grades and comments are retained by the professor.

There were 17 students. Attendance was excellent, an average of only one person missing each session. Thus there are 224 grade entries. For 12 commentaries, the evaluator neglected to write a grade. There were 7 A- grades. There were 5 B+ grades. There were 3 B grades. The rest were A. Comments were made on the presentation (typically "interesting"), the quality of the research, when the presentation covered research (invariably favorable), and on the oral exam performance (most often that the presentor stood up well to the questioning). There were also constructive criticisms for future improvement, like requests for better eye contact and better background understanding.

The question of how this course will be changed on the basis of this assessment is a difficult one for two reasons: (1) it changes professor and "topic" on a semester to semester basis anyhow; and (2) [if, hypothetically, the same professor and the same topic, oral exam practice, were to be repeated] the most obvious change would be irrespective of assessment -- since it was difficult to get students to ask questions, I would appoint a few students for each presentation to be the questioning committee and solicit evaluation of their performance as well.

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This page was last updated 12/30/03