School of Nursing: Standard on the Evaluation of Teaching


School of Nursing: Standard on the Evaluation of Teaching

Unit Standard



To be evaluated at next review.

Scope of Applicability

To be evaluated at next review.


Evaluation of teaching including peer observation occurs at critical points in the faculty member's career. Peer observation must occur at times of review for promotion and multi-year reappointment. These peer observations are required by the University and are summative in nature. Formative evaluation may occur at the request of the faculty member and are recommended to occur one year before any required peer observation of teaching. Some aspects of teaching are evaluated one or more times during the year through student evaluations and faculty self-evaluations. The annual evaluations provide a cumulative record for the fuller evaluation required at the time of the Appointments, Promotion, & Tenure (APT) or Appointments, Promotion, & Reappointments (APR) Committee reviews. Responsibility for the conduct of the annual faculty evaluation rests largely with the faculty member's Division Head; the Division Head and APT/APR share responsibility for periodic appraisal when appointment, promotion, tenure, or reappointment decisions are made.

Teaching is evaluated in three primary ways: by peer evaluation, student evaluation and self-assessment.

Evaluations Criterion Table
Type of Evaluation Evaluation Items Criteria Method
Peer Evaluation

Materials, as relevant:

  • Syllabi
  • Learning activities
  • Assignments
  • Written feedback on
  • Handouts
  • Website (including the.course management system)
  • Other teaching tools


  • Currency
  • Organization
  • Sequence
  • Level
  • Synthesis

Teaching Process

  • Preparation/plans
  • Methods
  • Appropriate use of methods
  • Appropriate use of
  • technology
  • Style
  • Engagement of learners
  • Pre-review
  • Observation
  • Review of materials
Student evaluation
  • Evaluation forms for course and teacher
  • See current evaluation forms
  • Anonymous feedback via current forms
  • Course materials
  • Student evaluations
  • Content
  • Process
  • Leadership
  • Self-reflection
  • Goal-setting

Peer Evaluation of Teaching

The Board of Governor's Report, "Tenure and Teaching in the University of North Carolina: A Joint Report," indicates that "professional colleagues must be relied upon to judge the 'scholarly qualities' of an individual faculty member and to relate his or her contributions to the institutional mission."1 The following describes the School's peer teaching evaluation policies developed in response to the Report.

Peer Evaluation of Teaching for Formative Evaluation

Peer evaluation is both a formative and summative process. For formative purposes, peer observation of teaching provides guidance and mentoring for the development of teaching skills. One peer observation of teaching is recommended one year prior to the peer evaluation of teaching associated with APR and APT reviews. That observation of teaching is for formative purposes only, providing feedback to the teacher to improve educational practices. The feedback from the observation is shared only with the faculty member and recorded in writing for that person's use.

Initiation of Peer Evaluation of Teaching for Promotions & Reappointments

The Chair of APT will notify the Division Head about faculty needing peer teaching evaluation at least one year in advance of the APT or APR review. The Division Head initiates the review process, including discussing with the faculty member the review process. The Division Head is responsible for monitoring the peer teaching evaluation process and discussing the peer review process with the reviewed faculty member.

Process of Peer Evaluation of Teaching

In collaboration with the faculty member, Division Heads will ask other faculty members to serve as peer teaching evaluators for the faculty member. Reviewer selection will occur early so reviewers have ample opportunities to select observations to be made and time to prepare and submit their report. Once the reviewers are selected, the Division Head communicates with the two reviewers and instructs them on the focus of the review and the deadline for the report, and offers the Peer Evaluation of Teaching Guide (attached).

Reviewers will obtain the packet of appropriate teaching materials from the faculty member being reviewed or online and meet with her/him at least once before the observations. It is recommended that reviewers observe a full teaching episode and return for observations if needed. In some cases, a single observation of 2 to 3 hours in length may provide reviewers with a more in-depth assessment of a complete teaching encounter that reflects the totality of the faculty member's teaching performance.

At the completion of the peer evaluation of teaching, but no later than the deadline specified by the Division Head, peer evaluators provide the Division Head a written report of their evaluation. This report should address both strengths of teaching and suggested areas for improvement. The reviewers also should meet with the faculty member whose teaching has been reviewed to provide feedback to their colleague. They are encouraged to share their written peer teaching evaluation with the faculty member as well. If improvement in teaching is needed, the Division Head and faculty member will develop a plan to address the needed improvement.

Content of Peer Evaluation of Teaching

Peer evaluation of teaching should encompass review of teaching performance in the classroom, online and clinical settings. Relevant teaching materials, such as course syllabi, website materials, assignments, written feedback on papers, and course handouts should be collated by the faculty member being reviewed and given to the peer evaluators. In addition to reviewing these materials, peer evaluators will directly observe the faculty member during the teaching process when possible. Examples of criteria that might be used when evaluating teaching are included in the attached Peer Evaluation of Teaching Guide.

Student Evaluation of Teaching

Students evaluate teaching and courses every semester. They may evaluate other teaching activities (e.g., academic advisement and research advisement). Students evaluate teaching anonymously, and the results are tabulated and distributed according to School of Nursing Policy. Results from student evaluations are incorporated in the faculty members' self-assessment of teaching for the annual performance review by Division Heads and the periodic cumulative reappointment and promotion review by APT/APR.

Self-Assessment of Teaching

Faculty members conduct an assessment of their own teaching and submit a report to Division Heads as part of the annual review process. The self-assessment of teaching includes:

  • A summary of courses taught each semester, including the number of students in each course as well as honors, thesis, project, or dissertation advisees;
  • A summary of student course and teaching evaluations for each course in which the faculty was the instructor;
  • A summary of leadership roles in the School related to teaching; and
  • Goals for teaching based upon strengths and areas in need of improvement.

Division Head Evaluation

The Division Head meets each year with faculty for the annual review to discuss the faculty member's self-evaluation. Assessment of teaching is an essential part of the annual review process and each time a faculty dossier is going to APR/APT for review and/or reappointment. As part of this annual or periodic review, the Division Head's responsibilities include a review and comment on the faculty member's self-evaluation and an appraisal of the faculty member's performance. The Division Head also may solicit feedback from knowledgeable colleagues. Where improvement in teaching is needed, the Division Head and faculty member will develop a plan.

Peer Observation of Teaching Guide

This is a guide for the observation and written report. Although you may not have the data to address each item listed in your report, you should have data to address several items from each major section. Include information about the course that might influence teaching effectiveness, e.g., if it is a required or elective course, time of day the class is offered, number of students, etc., and other information to provide the context of the observation.

Knowledge of Subject Matter

  • Does the faculty member exhibit mastery of content?
  • Is the faculty member current in knowledge?
  • Is depth and breadth of material appropriate to the level of the course and students?
  • Does the content relate to the syllabus and goals of the course?
  • Does the faculty member emphasize conceptual grasp of material?
  • Does the faculty member relate the material to "real world" applications?
  • Does the faculty member distinguish between fact and opinion? Present divergent views?


  • Was the faculty member well prepared for teaching?
  • Is the method of teaching appropriate for the content, intended outcomes, and learner needs?
  • Are a variety of teaching methods used if appropriate?
  • Were the teaching methods used effectively?
  • Were various parts of the lesson and instructional strategies well integrated?
  • Was the overall organization of the class, online session, and clinical session logical?
  • Does the instruction match the faculty member's goals for learning and course outcomes?
  • If instructional media were used, were they effective?

Faculty - Student Interaction

  • Was there evidence of instructor - student rapport?
  • Did the faculty member ask higher-level questions, and were they used effectively?
  • Did the faculty member answer questions in a supportive manner?
  • Were interactions conducive to learning?
  • Was the faculty member sensitive to student lack of understanding the material?


  • Did the faculty member show enthusiasm for teaching? For the subject?
  • Did the faculty member seem friendly and relaxed?
  • Was the faculty member's approach conducive to learning?

Student Behavior

  • Were students attentive? Engaged? Actively involved? Encouraged to ask questions?
  • Were there student behaviors that were outside the mainstream of activity, e.g., random conversations? How did the faculty member handle those behaviors?
  • Were there student behaviors that have implications for the faculty member?

Course Materials (Clarify faculty member's specific involvement with developing course materials)

  • Did the syllabus make clear what would be required of students during the instruction?
  • What was the overall quality of handouts and other materials?
  • Were readings and other materials adequate for student preparation?

General Comments

  • What did you think was most effective about the teaching session you observed (in the classroom, online, in clinical practice) or the faculty member's approach?
  • What did you think needs improvement in the faculty member's approach to teaching?
  • What part of the instruction particularly enhanced the learning process?



Contact Information

Primary Contact

Theresa Raphael-Grimm, Faculty Chair

Other Contacts

Mary Palmer, APT Co-Chair

Barbara Mark, APT Chair

Important Dates

  • Effective Date and title of Approver:
  • Revised: 3/26/02 and approved by faculty 4/8/2002
  • Revised: 4/2007 by APR, approved by APT 9/17/2007,
  • Approved by APT 9/17/2007, FEC 10/19/2007 approved by faculty 11/9/2009
  • Approved by faculty 2/2012

Approved by:

Theresa Raphael-Grimm

Faculty Chair


Article ID: 132427
Thu 4/8/21 9:31 PM
Fri 11/19/21 2:36 PM
Effective Date
If the date on which this document became/becomes enforceable differs from the Origination or Last Revision, this attribute reflects the date on which it is/was enforcable.
02/01/2012 11:00 PM
Issuing Officer
Name of the document Issuing Officer. This is the individual whose organizational authority covers the policy scope and who is primarily responsible for the policy.
Issuing Officer Title
Title of the person who is primarily responsible for issuing this policy.
Clinical Professor
Last Review
Date on which the most recent document review was completed.
02/01/2012 11:00 PM
Last Revised
Date on which the most recent changes to this document were approved.
02/01/2012 11:00 PM
Date on which the original version of this document was first made official.
03/26/2002 11:00 PM
Responsible Unit
School, Department, or other organizational unit issuing this document.
School of Nursing