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SMALL GROUP INSTRUCTIONAL FEEDBACK: A STUDENT PERSPECTIVE OF ITS IMPACT ON THE TEACHING AND LEARNING ENVIRONMENT

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SMALL GROUP INSTRUCTIONAL FEEDBACK: A STUDENT PERSPECTIVE OF ITS IMPACT ON THE TEACHING AND LEARNING ENVIRONMENT
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    SMALL GROUP INSTRUCTIONAL FEEDBACK: A STUDENT PERSPECTIVE OF ITS IMPACT ON THE TEACHING AND LEARNING ENVIRONMENT by DOUGLAS MAUGER FACULTY RESEARCH COMMITTEE: Chair: Terry Huffman, Ph.D . Members: Suzanne Harrison, Ph.D. and Gary Tiffin, Ph.D . Presented to Educational Foundations and Leadership Department The School of Education, George Fox University In partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctorate of Education March 16, 2010    ii ABSTRACT Small Group Instructional Feedback (SGIF) is an instructor driven structured mid-term activity. Its purpose is to solicit student specific feedback on instructor effectiveness and provide this feedback immediately back to the instructor. Does SGIF bring about changes to the teaching and learning environment? Do students‘ percept ions of the course, the instructor, and their motivation towards learning change after participating in SGIF? Do instructors make changes to their teaching after receiving mid-term feedback? An end of term survey was taken of 352 college students (response rate of 95%) representing 20 courses from all departments. The survey (alpha .911) consisted of 33 items on a seven point Likert scale and three open ended items that collected student comments. As a result, 81% indicated that the SGIF improved the teaching and learning environment. Strong positive correlations existed at the .001 level between students‘ attitudes toward the course, the instruct or, and their motivation with 83% indicating that they became more aware of their role in improving the teaching and learning process. Ninety-six percent of the students indicated they observed that the instructor acted upon their feedback. These findings reflect the ability of structured mid-term feedback to act as a catalyst in bringing about changes to the teaching and learning environment.      iii ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS ―Be still and know that I am God‖ (Psalm 46:10, NIV), God‘s word comforts, reminds and grounds me of who I am in my relationship to everything in my life. In this earthly journey I want to recognize Shirley my wife of 24 years who is the spark within my life. When I lost direction in my life , she prayed and stood beside me. She is God‘s greatest blessing to me, my beloved whom I honour and respect. My educational journey was not travelled alone and many need to be recognized. AJ my son who typed my first essay when I could not type due to a hand injury and Calvin my other son who helped enter all the data twice to ensure accuracy. Dr. Terry Huffman, my advisor and friend who gently guided me through the process and always had time for coffee. Dr. Suzanne Harrison and Dr. Gary Tiffin the readers who provided feedback that sharpened my thinking and writing. Dr. Scott Headley who answered all my questions when I was first considered George Fox; he too became a good friend. The Education faculty and support staff of George Fox University who demonstrated to me servant leadership Special recognition goes, to my mom and extended family that unconditionally loved and believed in me. Lastly to the international cohort because we learned, laughed and supported each other, and we also spent many hours drinking coffee at Neil ‘ s Java Jungle.    iv TABLE OF CONTENTS ABSTRACT .................................................................................................................................... ii   ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS ......................................................................................................... iii   TABLE OF CONTENTS .............................................................................................................. iv   LIST OF TABLES ........................................................................................................................ vii   CHAPTER 1 ................................................................................................................................... 1   Introduction ................................................................................................................................. 1   Statement of the Problem ....................................................................................................... 3   Research Questions ................................................................................................................ 3   Key Terms............................................................................................................................... 4   Limitations and Delimitations ................................................................................................ 8   CHAPTER 2 ................................................................................................................................. 10   Review of the Literature ........................................................................................................... 10   The History of the Use of Student Feedback ....................................................................... 11   The Purpose of Student Feedback ........................................................................................ 12   Validity and Reliability Factors in Collecting Student Feedback ....................................... 13   Effective Instruction as a Construct ..................................................................................... 14   Instruments for the Collection of Student Evaluations ........................................................ 15   Bias and Factors Influencing Student Feedback .................................................................. 16   Non-Student Feedback ......................................................................................................... 19   The Functions and Understandings of Summative Evaluations ......................................... 20   The perspective of administrators .................................................................................... 21   The perspective of faculty. ............................................................................................... 22   The perspective of students .............................................................................................. 23   Summary. .......................................................................................................................... 24   The Functions and Understandings of Formative Feedback ............................................... 24   The perspective of administrators .................................................................................... 26   The perspective of faculty ................................................................................................ 27   The perspective of students .............................................................................................. 28   Summary. .......................................................................................................................... 29   Small Group Instructional Feedback ................................................................................... 30   SGIF stage one.................................................................................................................. 31   SGIF stage two .  ................................................................................................................ 32   SGIF stage three ............................................................................................................... 33   SGIF stage four ................................................................................................................. 33   SGIF stage five ................................................................................................................. 34   Conclusion ............................................................................................................................ 34      v CHAPTER 3 ................................................................................................................................. 36   Method ...................................................................................................................................... 36   Setting ................................................................................................................................... 37   Participants ............................................................................................................................ 37   Safeguarding Human Subjects ............................................................................................. 38   Research Design ................................................................................................................... 38   Survey Instrument ................................................................................................................. 39   Procedure .............................................................................................................................. 41   Data Analysis ........................................................................................................................ 42   Role of the Researcher .......................................................................................................... 43   Potential Contributions of the Research .............................................................................. 44   CHAPTER 4 ................................................................................................................................. 46   Findings ..................................................................................................................................... 46   Reliability and Validity ........................................................................................................ 46   Demographics of Sample Population ................................................................................... 47   Research Question #1 ........................................................................................................... 47   Research Question #2 ........................................................................................................... 52   Research Question #3 ........................................................................................................... 57   Research Question # 4 .......................................................................................................... 61   Research Question # 5 .......................................................................................................... 62   CHAPTER 5 ................................................................................................................................. 64   Discussion ................................................................................................................................. 64   Summary ............................................................................................................................... 64   Discussion ............................................................................................................................. 65   Additional Findings .............................................................................................................. 71   Generalizability of the Findings ........................................................................................... 74   Implications for Policy and Practice .................................................................................... 74   Recommendations for Future Research ............................................................................... 76   Personal Reflections ............................................................................................................. 78   Conclusion ............................................................................................................................ 78   References ..................................................................................................................................... 79   Appendix A SGIF:Student Individual Response Handout ........................................................ 103   Appendix B: SGIF:Group Summary Handout ........................................................................... 104   Appendix C: SGIF:Individual Rating Handout ......................................................................... 105   Appendix D: Email to faculty: Inviting them to participate in the research ............................. 106  
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