The Student Learning Experience (SLE) is an end-of-term survey which offers students and instructors the opportunity to work together to improve the quality of teaching. The SLEs are available for course(s) at this link: Before SLEs, the electronic Student Evaluation of Teaching (eSET) was used from 2012-2021 and the SET existed from 2004-2012. For a full report of the evolution of the SLE with a summary of pilot testing see this Spring 2022 AOT Report.

The Survey Design

The SLE consists of 14 survey questions and two open response questions. The questions were developed in alignment with the three categories of the Quality Teaching Framework adopted by the Faculty Senate in 2021. The questions address: 1) Diverse, Equitable, and Inclusive Learning; 2) Teaching as a discipline; and 3) Mentorship. All survey questions are posed on a scale of 1-6 with an "unable to answer" option. The previous questions most heavily relied on for promotion and tenure still exist until new guidelines are established. These questions are Q1, "The course as a whole was" and Q2, "The instructor's contribution to the course was". Instructors may also opt to ask students for input on their teaching methods (by asking questions in a personalized fashion).

The Process

After the course withdrawal deadline, students are invited via email or Canvas to begin the survey process to provide feedback on their learning experience in a convenient and confidential manner. Following the end of the survey period and after final grades are due, reports are generated. Instructors are then informed via email that reports are available. Certain administrative staff from academic departments, colleges, and campuses are also able to view reports for their specific programs.

Increasing SLE Responses

This web page provides pointers on why response rates are important, why students don't complete them, what faculty and administrators can do to increase response rates, and language faculty can use to motivate students to complete them. While still a work in progress the Faculty Senate Advance of Teaching Committee is in the process of creating a formative version of the SLE as an optional assessment during the middle of the term.

What are indicators of Quality Teaching? What are the limitations of the SLE data?

Whereas student evaluations are the most common strategy of evaluation, by themselves they are not sufficient to provide a complete evaluation of teaching (Boysen, 2016; Gurung, 2022). A collection of course materials provide an efficient way to document teaching effectiveness as part of the dossier. As stated in the OSU faculty handbook and featured in the Faculty Senate approved Quality Teaching Framework, self-reflections, peer observations, and other evidence of teaching rigor are key parts of a teaching dossier. Students, however, are in a unique position to make evaluations and are an appropriate source of information when they are judging student-instructor relationships, organization of the course, their views of the instructor's professional and ethical behavior, their workload, what they have learned in the course, fairness of grading, and the instructor's ability to communicate. They are not good sources from which to judge relevance and recency of course content, and knowledge and scholarships of the instructor.

How should SLE data be considered in Annual Reviews and Promotion and Tenure?

As per the Office of Faculty Affairs, eSET/SLEs scores are not required to be reported for terms from Spring 2020 to Winter 2022. In absence of these data, faculty and administrators should continue their peer observations, including review of course materials. The Office of Faculty Affairs and Faculty Senate Advancement of Teaching Committee are working together to provide guidance for Annual Reviews and Promotion and Tenure. Details are forthcoming Fall 2022.

A note from the Advancement of Teaching Committee Chair

The current work on the SLEs is a part of an ongoing effort coordinated by the Faculty Senate's Advancement of Teaching Committee. Per the directives of Faculty Senate Presidents, Bob Mason, Jon Dorbolo and Selina Heppel, the AOT committee has worked to lead efforts that reexamine teaching evaluation at OSU. Specifically, the Faculty Senate Executive Committee charged AOT to "Have an institutional wide conversation about Quality Teaching at OSU and the ways in which we identify it and continually work towards it."  To date, the Faculty Senate adopted The Quality Teaching Framework, replaced the eSET questions with the current SLE questions, and is continuing to examine implementable recommendations for Teaching peer review, Faculty self-reflection and Teaching dossier/portfolio. For more information about this work, please refer to OSU's Faculty Senate, Advancement of Teaching Committee reference materials.

AOT, 2021-2022 Chair, Dr. Devon Quick.

February 11, 2022. This document will continue to be updated.

Download the aligned SLE questions to the QT Framework as a PDF or view it below.