As noted in previous blog posts, evaluations are critical to a students growth and success. As an administrator or faculty member, it is incredibly important to know how to write up beneficial evaluations. Evaluations are a good way to give students constructive criticism, but also point out the things they did well.
After a relatively critical event, experience, or course, it is a good time to evaluate a student. For example, this could be after an experience at a specific clinical site. Another good time to evaluate a student would be when their actions are affecting other students or themselves.
The amount of evaluations that can be completed are limitless. What is most important though is that students are evaluated during an appropriate time frame. When completed right away, evaluations are the most fresh and give detailed constructive criticism.
When filling out an evaluation, like in eValuate+, evaluators should keep four questions in mind:
- What was the student able to do well?
- What wasn’t the student able to do well?
- How does the student’s performance compare to that of other students?
- How can the student improve?
By answering these questions, students receive meaningful feedback that can greatly influence their performance in the future. As an evaluator, it is necessary to be as specific as possible. Personalized language within evaluations will get better responses from students. For example, stay away from phrases such as “you didn’t, “you failed to,” “you shouldn’t” and so on as it may discourage them.
In contrast, using encouraging phrases such as “I believe that,” “I suggest that,” “I recommend that,” and so on will motivate students to do better rather than not. Promote self-esteem and inspire the person while giving beneficial critiques.
In order to remove bias from an evaluation, evaluate the person’s actions and behaviors rather than the person themselves. Evaluations should be based on what is being seen, heard, and felt, not who the individual is.
Finally, present the evaluation feedback carefully. Fully explain any criticisms or praises so that the student can take that information and run with it. This gives students the opportunity to grow as professionals and increase their performance level.
Evaluations are critical to the success of a student. Interested in evaluating students in your specific program? Check out eValuate+.