How to end bad practices in teacher quality assessment with the help of technology

17, Oct, 2018

Isabel Sagenmüller
BY: Isabel Sagenmüller

A common task in educational management is the process of assessing the quality of teacher performance, in an aim to identify strategies that improve the teaching practice at different academic levels, and the activities that comprise it.

Feedback from students is crucial to obtain insights into a teacher’s demonstrated impact on students’ learning. Therefore, this is the methodology used to consider the continuity and promotion of a faculty member.

Meanwhile, managing the teaching process is carried out by anyone in charge of managing, supervising or coordinating educators.

The main problem of traditional teacher management methods

Teacher management is generally reflexive and developed by elements that make up teaching skills. Certain conditions are required for its implementation to meet objectives fully. These include receptivity, impartiality, organization, preparation and, above all, an adequate assessment that does not add emotion to the supervision process.

However, a teacher performance assessment method can be confusing and deliver unclear results. Specially if the supervisor in charge of carrying out the evaluation depends on student feedback solely and does not have access to replies provided by the educator.

How can a management platform solve bad practices in teacher administration?

Effective teacher management is essential for all education institutions’ good practices and processes since it helps to provide an adequate environment for the head of an academic program or direct supervisor to reflect on the collective understanding about faculty and students.

Hence, it is essential for the institution to adopt an integrated 360° evaluation platform that helps teachers make self-assessments and incorporate them along student evaluations. As a result, the supervisor can assess faculty performance while peers value the teacher in different areas.

A proper management platform must contain at least the following  attributes:

a) Make good and bad performance visible: Without a teacher management platform, the supervisor can only base the assessment on feedback from students or peers but does not have access to information from the educator.

It is essential not only to assess classwork but also to conduct a review according to a flexible workflow, allowing the evolution of the teacher’s work to be monitored in different instances.

b) Professionalize the supervision: In addition to enhancing teacher management methods, the software can also improve the performance of supervisors in the process.

Transparency is crucial for conducting assessments in educational institutions as it creates the proper environment for faculty to reflect on the collective understanding about teaching skills and their students.

Besides, it fosters the creation of flexible work plans for academic terms, including teaching activities, research, external consultancy, institutional roles, and constant improvement efforts for each faculty member.   

c) Clarify the teacher’s capabilities: Not all professors are experts in the areas covered by their coursework. Occasionally, they may be more proficient or possess better skills to conduct other activities, such as teaching a Master’s degree. A management platform can help clarify when educators are better qualified to do research or post-graduate studies rather than teaching a specific subject.

d) Optimize teachers’ profiles: A management platform provides a complete historical record of teachers, their career and previous performance, as well as showing their academic achievements and the number of courses they teach.  

The tool makes downloading evidence and historical information possible and including recognition and awards both within and outside the institution. All these factors contribute to conducting better teacher quality assessments.

Conclusions

The results and benefits provided by a teacher management platform could be the starting point to drive good practices in the institution, fostering the continuous improvement of faculty members.

This software allows teachers to explicitly show the work they do, how they do it, and their views on how the institution as a whole can make progress. It covers not only the performance of teachers in class, but other aspects such as research, academic management, and the enhancement of personal skills.  

Accordingly, supervisors and heads of academic programs can monitor the work of each educator in real time and align it with the institution's strategic plans.

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About the author

Isabel has more than 10 years of experience developing, leading and executing Marketing and Communication strategies at international level (EMEA, US and LATAM). She has worked for B2B organizations in different sectors such as nutrition, logistics and education. She is bilingual in German and Spanish and fluent in English and French.

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