Time to Check-in With Your Students
Checking in with students early in the semester (3-5 weeks) is one of the best ways to improve both the sense of community in your course and your efficacy as an instructor. These evaluations do not need to be long or complicated. Just asking a few questions can get you moving in the right direction for student success. Everyone is still dealing with emotional stresses from the COVID Pandemic. Now is an important time to also check in with your students’ social emotional learning and see if they need additional support.
Of course, the early semester check-in can be done in class, but you might consider using Canvas Quizzes/Surveys or a Canvas Assignment for this task. An asynchronous check-in gives students time to think about and complete the questions in greater detail at a time that is best for them.
Below are some ideas for gathering early-semester feedback.
Gathering Course Information
- “Keep, Stop, Start” prompt (What do you want me to KEEP doing, STOP doing, and START doing?)
- List at least one thing I do to help you learn in this class.
- List at least one thing that I could do to improve your learning in this class.
You can also ask more specific questions for areas of concern or specific delivery formats.
Gathering Social Emotional Information
Once you have the student feedback data, you will want to plan a discussion with students. Your discussion will reflect on the feedback and address what can and cannot be changed and your plan for implementing the changes. This transparency is vital to student trust and feelings of value in your course. The meeting/discussion can take many forms. You might decide to have a synchronous meeting, post a video and encourage students to comment in a discussion forum, or create a multi-media discussion using Voicethread.