Online Learning Evaluations

From 2020, Online Learning Evaluations are being used for students studying online. SET is being used for on-campus students.

Online Learning Evaluations

Online Learning Evaluations (OLEs) are being used for all students in Semester Two and Quarter Four 2021.

OLEs first replaced the SET course and teaching evaluations for all students in Semester One and Quarter Two 2020, and have been used for those students studying exclusively online from Semester Two 2020.

Will there be both course and teacher evaluations?

Teacher evaluation questions are NOT included in the Online Learning Evaluations.  This is because faculties have expressed a desire to minimise pressure on academic staff at this time, while still providing students with an opportunity to give feedback on their overall learning and teaching experience.  In addition, it could prove challenging for students to identify the contributions of different staff in the online environment.

Staff who DO wish to collect feedback on their teaching can see the section below on 'Other ways to collect feedback'.

How are Online Learning Evaluations set up and distributed?

These are set up and distributed in the usual way using Blue, the platform that hosts SET.  Staff will be notified by email that their course/s will be evaluated, and students will receive automated invitation and reminder emails.

How can I view my SET and OLE results?

For all evaluation results from Semester Two 2020 onwards staff should go to SET Reports in Canvas.  Instructions for accessing these reports can be found at SET Reports.  

For Semester One 2020 results only University staff can access a special OLE dashboard:

  1. Go to the SMR intranet page
  2. Under the 'Links to reports' section, click the Strategic Management Reports (SMR) link.  This will lead you to the SMR home page.
  3. On the SMR home page, under the column 'Individual reports', click on 'S1 2020 Online Learning Evaluations' to access the dashboard.

To apply for SMR access please visit the SMR page [University staff only]

No teacher evaluation information is contained in this dashboard.  Student comments are not included.

How is course eligibility for Online Learning Evaluations determined?

Eligibility for a centrally-administered OLE is determined in the same way as SET, ie eligible courses are those with an in-scope Primary Graded Component (PGC) and at least 10 enrolled students.  

If your course has enrolments of between 5 and 9 students, your course will not be evaluated via the centrally-administered system, and instead you may use Qualtrics to evaluate your students. Qualtrics evaluations. Given the small size of your course, other methods of evaluation could also be useful.

Online Learning Evaluations are used for students studying online and SET is used for on-campus students. Faculties may request courses to be excluded; the Academic Quality office will discuss requests with faculties on a case-by-case basis and can be contacted on

What are the objectives for the OLE?

  • To provide students with an opportunity to give feedback about their learning experiences in the online environment
  • To obtain student perspectives on the effectiveness of learning and teaching in the online semester/quarter
  • To enable central collection of evaluation data which can be used by the centre and by academic leaders, as well as by staff teaching on courses, to reflect on course delivery and make improvements

OLE questionnaire

The OLE questionnaire was discussed with Learning Design Service Staff, Associate Deans (Academic) and (Learning and Teaching), and students. 

For Semester Two/Quarter Four 2021, to reflect the reality of a combination of on-campus and online delivery, the word 'online' was removed from all of the OLE questions.

Rated questions:

  1. It was easy to find the information and resources I needed on the Canvas course website.
  2. The (online) learning environment provided me with opportunities to communicate and/or collaborate with my peers.
  3. The (online) learning environment allowed effective communication between teaching staff and students.
  4. I was clearly informed how my learning would be assessed.
  5.  Assessments supported the aims of this course.
  6. I received helpful feedback on my learning progress.
  7. I felt part of a community of learners in this course.
  8. I felt I could stay motivated and engaged with my learning.
  9. Overall, I was satisfied with the learning experience in this course
Open-ended questions
  1. Overall, what aspects of the course were most helpful for your learning? 
  2. Overall, what did you find the most challenging about learning (online) in this course?    
  3. What changes could be made by the University that could address the challenges you have mentioned above?

Teaching evaluation questions are only applied to on-campus students via the standard SET questionnaire and are not included for students answering the OLE questionnaire.  

What if my course usually uses Qualtrics and not SET to be evaluated?

For any course to be excluded from OLEs, you must have discussed this with your Academic Head and received approval from the Academic Quality Office.

For courses excluded from OLEs, staff can use an OLE template for setting up a Qualtrics survey to include the same questions, with the option to add their own questions.  For setting up a Qualtrics survey to evaluate your course, please see the guide on the Qualtrics page.

Other ways to collect feedback

Optional OLE teacher question template

For academic terms when the course-only Online Learning Evaluations (OLEs) are implemented, teaching staff can seek student feedback on their teaching by using the Qualtrics survey tool.  There is a template in Qualtrics that teaching staff may use and modify, entitled '[OLE] Online Learning Evaluation teacher questionnaire template'.

Questions in the optional template are:

(Mandatory Likert-scale questions); Rating scale: Strongly Disagree-Disagree-Neutral-Agree-Strongly Agree

  1. The teacher communicated clearly the learning objectives for each session
  2. The teacher was well-prepared for teaching in this course.
  3. The teacher used activities in ways that supported my learning.
  4. The teacher explained concepts and answered questions in ways that I can understand.
  5. I received feedback from this teacher which contributed to my learning.
  6. This teacher supported me to stay engaged with my learning.
  7. Overall, this teacher was effective.

(Optional open-ended questions)

  1. What in this teacher's practice was most helpful for your learning?
  2. What improvement(s) would you like to see this teacher make?

The '[OLE] Online Learning Evaluation teacher questionnaire template (for evaluating online teaching)' is available in the University of Auckland Qualtrics Library.  For more information and a detailed guide about setting up a Qualtrics evaluation, see the Qualtrics page.

Formative feedback

Formative, in-course feedback is particularly important in the transition to the online environment.  Quick surveys can be used to gather this feedback allowing teachers to identify and correct any issues students have with the course or teaching in a timely manner.

Questions should be simple and may be open-ended.  Quick surveys or questionnaires can be done in a variety of ways:

  • A short online survey with your own questions (could be done as a Canvas Quiz, in Qualtrics, or using another online survey or feedback platform)
  • A minute paper (for teaching), eg what helped you to learn in this class and what didn't?
  • Traffic lights, eg I don't understand; I need help; I get it/do less of this; this is working OK; do more of this

How do I create a survey to get feedback on my teaching?

The Qualtrics survey tool is available to all staff who wish to collect formative and/or summative feedback on their teaching this semester or quarter. There are a number of teaching and course evaluation templates available in the University of Auckland Qualtrics Library that you may use and modify.  For instructions and further information, please see the guide on the Qualtrics page.

Examples of formative feedback mechanisms

The Faculty of Business and Economics uses a '5-point fast forward feedback' and a '12-point fast forward feedback' questionnaire for teachers to gather feedback on their teaching.  These can be found in the Qualtrics library.

    Five-item fast feedback:

  • Do more of this...
  • Do less of this...
  • Start this...
  • Stop this....
  • If you have any other suggestions, please write them here...

    Twelve-item fast feedback:

Use the grading scale below to evaluate the course

1 - strongly disagree; 2 - disagree; 3 - neutral; 4 - agree; 5 - strongly agree

    1. The course teaches you what you need to know

    2. You know what you have to do on the course

    3. This course is well-organised

    4. The course is too hard/fast

    5. The course is too easy/slow

    6. This course is engaging and interesting

    7, 8, 9. If you could change three things about the course they would be:

Use the grading scale below to evaluate your performance.

0-20%; 21-40%; 41-60%; 61-80%; 81-100%

    10. Approximately how many of the taught sessions offered have you attended?

    11. Approximately how much of the set reading and out-of-class work have you done?

    12. How could you improve your performance on the course?    

Templates for these fast feedback questionnaires are available in the University of Auckland Qualtrics Library.

    Peer review

This is another mechanism that you can use to get feedback on your teaching and some faculties have established processes for organising peer review of teaching.  The University of Auckland has created resources on peer review of teaching, including templates, observation forms, and guidance on procedure.  These resources are on the CLeaR website.