The student evaluation of teaching: its failure as a research program, and as an administrative guide
AbstractThis paper points up the methodological inadequacy of the "student evaluation of teaching" as a research program. We do this by reference to three, interrelated arguments. The first is that the student evaluation of teaching cannot claim to capture the wisdom of a crowd because, as a research program, it fails to meet Surowiecki's conditions for the existence and articulation of the wisdom of a crowd. The second argument extends the first, by stating: (a) the "student evaluation of teaching" research program fails to provide the methodological controls needed to differentiate cause from effect, or put differently (b) the methodological underpinnings of this research program is tantamount to the misapplication of a closed-system paradigm to an open social system. The third argument has two parts. These are that this research program is predicated on: (a) a false analogy between the workings of a business and a university, and therefore (b) on a mischaracterization of the student-professor relationship. These three arguments, these three failures, suggest that the "student evaluation of teaching" research program is methodologically ill-conceived and incoherent, and therefore cannot, with any credulity, serve as a guide to the administration and governance of a university.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by Academy of Economic Studies - Bucharest, Romania in its journal The AMFITEATRU ECONOMIC journal.
Volume (Year): 11 (2009)
Issue (Month): 25 (February)
Student evaluation of teaching; validity; biases; fallacies;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- A2 - General Economics and Teaching - - Economic Education and Teaching of Economics
- H83 - Public Economics - - Miscellaneous Issues - - - Public Administration
- I23 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Higher Education and Research Institutions
- L3 - Industrial Organization - - Nonprofit Organizations and Public Enterprise
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Bruce Caldwell, 1997. "Hayek and Socialism," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 35(4), pages 1856-1890, December.
- von Hayek, Friedrich August, 1974.
"The Pretence of Knowledge,"
Nobel Prize in Economics documents
1974-2, Nobel Prize Committee.
- Sproule, Robert, 2002. "The underdetermination of instructor performance by data from the student evaluation of teaching," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 21(3), pages 287-294, June.
- Lawson, Tony, 1989. "Realism and Instrumentalism in the Development of Econometrics," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 41(1), pages 236-58, January.
- Hamermesh, Daniel S. & Parker, Amy, 2005. "Beauty in the classroom: instructors' pulchritude and putative pedagogical productivity," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 24(4), pages 369-376, August.
- Victoria Chick & Sheila Dow, 2005. "The meaning of open systems," Journal of Economic Methodology, Taylor and Francis Journals, vol. 12(3), pages 363-381.
- Denis, Andy, 2003. "Methodology and policy prescription in economic thought: a response to Mario Bunge," The Journal of Socio-Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(2), pages 219-226, May.
- Bunge, Mario, 2000. "Systemism: the alternative to individualism and holism," The Journal of Socio-Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(2), pages 147-157.
- Krautmann, Anthony C. & Sander, William, 1999. "Grades and student evaluations of teachers," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 18(1), pages 59-63, February.
- Bradley A. Hansen & Mary Eschelbach Hansen, 2005. "Don't Put the Cart Before the Horse: Teaching the Economic Approach to Empirical Research," Working Papers 2005-12, American University, Department of Economics.
- Nicoleta Dospinescu & Maria Tătăruşanu & Gina Ionela Butnaru & Lucian Berechet, 2011. "The Perception of Students from the Economic Area on the New Learning Methods in the Knowledge Society," The AMFITEATRU ECONOMIC journal, Academy of Economic Studies - Bucharest, Romania, vol. 13(30), pages 527-543, June.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Gavrila Alexandru).
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.