Student reflection and feedback: Ending the semester on a reflective note (Teaching Tip)

Student reflection and feedback: Ending the semester on a reflective note

As you close out the semester, consider ways for students to reflect on the important new knowledge, skills, and growth they have gained in your course and encourage them to share that information with you.  

Self-reflection allows students the time and space to consider the importance of what they have learned. Take just 5 minutes of an upcoming class and ask students to (individually or in small groups, written or verbal) reflect on the following prompts: 

  • What was the most significant idea you learned in this class? 
  • What did you learn in this class that will help you in your next class (or in your internship or career or…….)? 
  • What did you not expect to learn, but you did in this class? 

Explore additional prompts for self-reflections on the Powerful endings and reflection page.  

Encourage student feedback. Every semester, students are asked to provide feedback via the electronic class climate course evaluation system. Encourage the students’ constructive input by:  

  • Taking class time for students to complete the end-of-course evaluations. It is best practice for the instructor to excuse themselves from the room (physical or virtual during this process). 
  • Telling students directly how much you value their feedback. 
  • Sharing how you incorporated past feedback into your previous courses.  
  • Sharing examples of constructive feedback comments.  
  • Explaining to students how evaluations and feedback comments are used at the department and college level.  

For more approaches, see the Strategies for better course evaluations page.  

With a joy for teaching,

Sara Marcketti, Director

Center for Excellence in Learning and Teaching

Full Teaching Tip

View the published CELT Teaching Tip: Student reflection and feedback: Ending the semester on a reflective note (April 8, 2021 – Constant Contact) page.

Prefer a Print version?

To view the Teaching Tip as a printable document with web addresses, download the CELT Teaching Tip for April 8, 2021 (PDF).

Workshop: ABCs of Preparing Your Teaching Portfolio with Cynthia Haynes & Paul Hengesteg

This workshop, the third in a series or stand-alone, brings elements of effective teaching together so faculty can organize evidence of their teaching, analyze their effectiveness, and create their teaching narrative. Participants will identify themes in their teaching feedback from themselves, peers, and students, and connect it to their teaching philosophy statement. Facilitated by Cindy Haynes (CELT Faculty Fellow) and Paul Hengesteg (CELT Assessment Coordinator) this workshop is intended to be a true “work” shop, so bring (or have access to) your documentation/evidence of teaching and a laptop. CELT will provide lunch!

Learning Goal & Objectives
In this workshop series, participants assemble a teaching portfolio, usable in promotion and tenure, awards, and annual reviews. In this session, they will:
1. Identify components of a holistic picture of teaching
2. Collect and document teaching evidence from self, peers, and students
3. Analyze teaching evidence for themes, compare with teaching statement
4. Draft their teaching narrative

If you are a person with a disability, please contact CELT at 515-294-5357 or email to request reasonable accommodations to allow participation in this event.

If you would prefer to register outside of the link below, you can call CELT at 515-294-5357 or email (specify event title, date, name, and department with your request) if you’d like to register that way.

Reflecting on what I hope for my students…

Amy Popillion, Senior Lecturer, Human Development & Human Sciences at Iowa State University, and Facilitator for CELT’s Team-Based Learning Faculty/Staff Learning Community shared this reflection with us before students arrived on campus yesterday,

“Spent some quiet time at the back of my fall classroom reflecting on what I hope for my students. I reflected on hopes for learning, kindness, building community, persevering through difficult dialogues with each other, for a-ha moments to happen, for inspiration and knowledge that will guide their professional decisions and personal growth. I took time to notice each and every chair. I envisioned the student who will sit there, wishing for them the best experience in my class and most of all a place where they feel welcomed, included, challenged, and supported. (Note: we will turn on the lights for a more “enlightened” experience 💡😊).”

Post on Facebook from Amy Popillion, Senior Lecturer, HDFS, Iowa State University