Public Economics Seminar location:Leuven date:17 June 2009
Students’ evaluations of teacher performance (SETs) are increasingly used by universities. However, in their current format SET-scores are controversial mainly due to two issues: (1) questionnaire items are relegated to the status of being of equal importance, and (2) the feedback to the teachers is rather vague and limited. This paper proposes a tailored version of Data Envelopment Analysis to construct SET-scores. One part of this method’s appeal stems from overcoming the two aforementioned criticisms. In particular, DEA accounts for different values and interpretations that teachers attach to ‘good teaching’ and teacher performances are put into a relative perspective to be optimally evaluated. Second, if available, expert opinion on the relative importance of teaching aspects can be easily incorporated into the evaluation. The identification of teachers’ relative strengths and weaknesses is a third advantage. The method is illustrated using data collected at the Hogeschool Universiteit Brussel.