Peer Review of Teaching, Guidelines

Frequency and Timing of Peer Review

Assistant Professor and Instructor I

Summative peer evaluation for reappointment, promotion and/or tenure is required by the Agreement on Conditions of Appointment for Faculty. It is highly recommended that annual formative peer evaluations (mentoring reviews of teaching) be conducted - by the teaching committee or by the faculty member's mentors or mentoring committee. Prescribed schedules for summative peer evaluation and suggested mentoring reviews are given below.

Assistant Professor
Year 1 Year 2 Year 3 Year 4 Year 5 to 7
    Reappointment    
Mentoring review Mentoring review Summative Peer Evaluation for reappointment Mentoring review Summative Peer Evaluation for promotion and tenure OR reappointment
Instructor 1
Year 1 Year 2 Year 3 Year 4 Year 5
Reappointment     Reappointment Periodic review
Mentoring review Summative Peer Evaluation for reappointment Mentoring review Summative Peer Evaluation for reappointment Summative Peer Evaluation for promotion and tenure

Associate Professor and Senior Instructor

At least one formative (mentoring review) peer evaluation is recommended for faculty in this rank before being formally reviewed for promotion. The formal (summative) evaluation for promotion (and/or tenure) must include information from the current or most recent teaching term.

Professor

The UBCV Peer Review Working Group recommends that all Full Professors and Professors of Teaching undergo summative peer evaluation every 5 years. Formative peer evaluations will be initiated when performance falls below the standards expected in the Faculty of Science (see next section).

Sessional and 12-Month Lecturers

Although lecturers are not reviewed for tenure or promotion, where possible regular formative peer evaluations/mentoring reviews are recommended. Summative peer review for continuing sessional and 12-month lecturers is recommended.

Additional formative peer evaluations may be scheduled at the request of the faculty member.

Additional Peer Review When Student Evaluations of Teaching Fall Below Expected Standards

Regardless of rank, when a faculty member’s teaching evaluations fall below the expected standard for the faculty and department, peer-mentoring visits will be arranged. The purpose of this mentoring review is to help the faculty improve their teaching skills and approaches in a supportive and constructive manner with the aim to improving student education and learning outcomes.

Following each teaching term (Winter or Summer) the Dean directs staff to process the data provided by the student evaluation of teaching reports. The data are analyzed by the appropriate Associate Dean(s) to identify potential

  • cases of teaching excellence and
  • cases that raise concerns

Based upon this analysis the Dean sends letters to Heads and Directors calling for further investigation, and potentially remedial action, in the case of low evaluations, and letters of praise directly to faculty members when there is potential evidence of teaching excellence. The Dean acknowledges that teaching evaluation reports constitute only one part of a full review of a faculty member’s teaching performance.

Areas of Concern

Concerns are identified based on a combined analysis of the student evaluations and student comments. To determine the appropriate course of action for a specific teaching evaluation report Science compares the mean response for Question 6 (Overall, the instructor was an effective teacher) to two threshold values: 3.0, 3.5 (approximately two and one standard deviations respectively below the Science mean).

A) For all instructors whose evaluations on Question 6 (Effectiveness of Teaching) fall below 3.0 once or fall below 3.5 in at least three years over a five-year period:

  • a letter is sent to the Head of Department informing them of this evaluation
  • the Head is required to initiate a program of mentoring review of teaching for any continuing faculty including:
    • a formative assessment based on the guidelines and principles outlined by the CTLT’s peer review of teaching program is carried out by a committee of peers in consultation with the Head and the Associate Dean Academic Personnel.
    • discussions with the instructor on teaching performance as reviewed by peers
    • professional development in consultation with CTLT
  • the Head will provide a letter to the Dean outlining the specifics of the measures taken to improve teaching performance.

B) For all instructors whose evaluations on Question 6 (Effectiveness of Teaching) fall above 3.0 and below 3.5:

  • a letter is sent to the Head of Department informing them of this evaluation
  • the Head will consider this evaluation within the context of the course as specific courses have historically generated lower evaluations regardless of the instructor
  • it is suggested that the Head initiate a program of formative/mentoring review of teaching for all faculty who will teach in subsequent years. This includes:
    • classroom visits and review of teaching by a committee of peers
    • discussions with the instructor on teaching performance as reviewed by peers
    • suggested professional development in consultation with CTLT