What is FYI?

Feedback on Your Instruction (FYI) is a web-based system for generating a survey to collect student feedback about teaching effectiveness and the quality of specific aspects of a course. The FYI surveys are intended as a convenience to you and they are for your use only. They may be modified in multiple ways to best meet the goals you have for collecting feedback on your teaching, in general, or your specific courses.

How to construct a Course Feedback Survey Using FYI

When you want to use a survey to gather student feedback, the FYI menu provides topics, on the left side of your screen, with corresponding questions, which appear when you select a specific topic, to ask your students.

Choosing Items

Select a specific question by clicking within the box around the question’s text. Once you have selected your question, the box will be highlighted in blue and the question will be added to the preview of your course survey – appearing on the right of your screen. You can unselect a question by clicking the highlighted box to remove the question from your survey. Once you have selected your questions you can click and drag questions to reorder them in the preview area. If you would like to see the complete layout with the response area included, you can click the box next to "Show response areas”, and the strongly disagree to strongly agree (SD, D, N, A, SA) scale and blank lines for open ended questions will appear.

Number of Questions

Fewer than 20 questions is desirable. The extensive number of options in the FYI system is meant to take into account the wide variety of possible course characteristics and teaching goals. Choices should be limited to those you most want to know about and should be based on your course context. You should not include too many items on a student feedback survey if you want students to complete the survey thoughtfully.

Types of Questions

There are three types of question formats. The first format – scaled item – asks students to rate their agreement with a given statement using the ratings of SD, D, N, A, SA, respectfully standing for strongly disagree, disagree, neutral, agree, and strongly agree. These have been adapted from the former Student Evaluation of Teaching (SET) instrument that was used at Ohio State for more than twenty years.

Example Questions:

Exam questions were clear.

Course helped develop my problem-solving ability.

Writing and drawing at board were legible.

The second format – open ended – allows for students to comment, rather than select a specific rating.

Example Questions:

How did the way in which the course was designed help or hinder your learning?

What outcomes did you experience as a result of course field experiences?

Which course texts would you recommend adding or eliminating and why?

The third format – tailored items either scaled or open-ended – allows you to tailor the statement to be specific to your course. Instead of asking if the students found a general item agreeable or disagreeable, or to comment in general on a given item, you can include the specific items.

Example Questions:

Please comment on the following reading(s), being as specific as possible about its effect on your learning:

Glasswell's Notes on Metaphysics

The following field experience was helpful to my learning:


Wexner Center for the Arts

You may choose whatever mix of these formats you desire in constructing your survey.

Note for Team Teaching Situations

When a survey is being constructed for a team teaching situation, it is best to decide how to do this based on the team arrangement. If each instructor teaches separate components fairly independent of the other, separate surveys can be used for each. If each instructor participates fully in the course design and is present and active during the majority of course sessions, the course should be evaluated as one, with all instructors sharing the rating. Only the team members can make the decision as to what is most appropriate.