The principles of feedback in education and student feedback in Aalto University
Principles of feedback in education at Aalto University
The principles of feedback in education at Aalto University guide collecting and utilising student feedback. The goal is to support the active development of our feedback culture at Aalto so that we have interactive, impactful and streamlined feedback processes. Teachers can use these principles both to support the development of feedback practices in their teaching, as well as when discussing the feedback theme with their students. As a part of tenure track promotion teachers’ ability to actively collect and utilise student and collegial feedback in developing teaching is also assessed (Tenure track evaluation criteria | Aalto University).
We wish to promote an open feedback culture and the reciprocity of feedback. We give feedback in a direct and constructive manner. We respond to the feedback we receive. We discuss feedback with students. We gather feedback from several viewpoints, from an extensive range of actors.
Feedback results in the development and evolvement of operations. We collect feedback in as real-time as possible, in a way that genuinely enables us to process and benefit from the feedback. When giving feedback, we consider how it could be used for the development of operations. We monitor the development that is carried out based on feedback.
We collect comprehensive feedback on multiple levels. Giving feedback is easy, and it is a part of every process. Our feedback portfolio is student-oriented and clear. The feedback we give promotes students’ learning and supports the development of teaching.
Student feedback in Aalto
Course feedback is a unique part of the feedback portfolio in Aalto University and it reaches students in all phases of their studies and is collected systematically throuhgout Aalto. Hearing the voice of students is vital for the development of teaching and education as well as for quality assurance and for improving study-related services. Feedback is used on multiple levels in many ways and its utilisation is a special focus area at Aalto.
Read more about the questions in the course feedback survey.
AllWell? survey studies how students are doing with their studies in their second bachelor's and first master's years. Students receive personal feedback and programme directors the programme level results of the questionnaire. The questionnaire consists of parts taken from the HowULearn developed at the University of Helsinki and rounded off with supplementary questions.
The Finnish Bachelor’s Graduate Survey is a national student feedback survey. The objective of the questionnaire is to yield information on teaching and learning in different disciplines and to form as specific an idea as possible of students’ experiences and opinions of teaching and learning.
The survey is based on the HowULearn survey and the questions in the questionnaire are based on research on academic teaching and learning. The results will only be examined statistically at the group level. Therefore, the information gathered on individual students will not be monitored or reported.
Responsibility for the development and implementation of the questionnaire lies with Universities Finland UNIFI.
Aalto uses the results of the survey to develop its operations. As of 2015, the Ministry of Education and Culture distributes annually 3% (approx. €50 million) of its university core funding based on this student feedback survey.
- A summary report for Aalto staff https://ssrs.aalto.fi/Reports_RS/Pages/Report.aspx?ItemPath=%2fOPI%2fBachelor_feedback
- More information: http://www.unifi.fi/kandipalaute/ (In Finnish)
- Contact: [email protected]
Since 2011, Finnish universities and Academic Engineers and Architects in Finland (TEK) have conducted a survey of newly graduated Masters of Science in technology and architecture. The survey encompasses all Finnish university units that provide education in the technology field, reaching almost every recent graduate with an MSc (Tech) or architecture degree. Response rates have been high – the rate from the graduating class of 2015 was over 70%. Owing to the high response, the survey has yielded reliable comparative information about the quality of education in Finnish universities of technology.
The survey is also an inventory of the skill levels of those who will shape tomorrow’s world. It also tells about how well the study system is running, the experiences of alumni in the workplace, the current employment situation and the general level of satisfaction with the degrees alumni have completed. Survey results are put to use in TEK activities in a number of ways, for example, they are factored into education policies and the development of member services (incl. career advice and consultation on salary levels). The universities use the results in developing results-based indicators that are applied to the work of designing the curriculum and evaluating the quality of teaching.
- More information: https://www.tek.fi/fi/uutishuone/tutkimukset/vastavalmistuneiden-palautekysely (In Finnish)
Aalto University School of Business and the Finnish Business School Graduates organisation gather feedback on study and employment matters from the graduating business students. The responses are handled confidentially and cannot be linked to individual respondents. The feedback given is used to assess university operations and development and to follow the employment rates and salary levels of graduates. The students are to fill in the questionnaire before receiving their degree certificate.
- More information: https://www.ekonomit.fi/vastavalmistuneiden-palaute (in Finnish)
ISB is a global student survey that focuses on the perceptions and expectations of international students. Its results are used to improve international students’ experience of studying abroad and to develop student recruitment and marketing. The International Student Barometer survey is conducted by i-graduate.
- More information: http://www.i-graduate.org/services/international-student-barometer/
A national career monitoring survey is conducted by Career Services of Finnish Universities. The target group in the Master's survey is alumni who graduated five years ago and in the Doctoral survey alumni who graduated three years.
The survey provides current information from the working life that can be utilized in the development of teaching and research. Additionally, students who are still deciding on their studies and job opportunities value the information gained from the career paths of graduates.
For more information: https://www.aalto.fi/en/collaboration/aalto-university-graduates-in-working-life
Course implementation from teacher's view
Instructions for teachers what to notice before the course, during the course and after it.
This handbook contains practical information for a teacher on teaching at Aalto University.
Starting Point of Wellbeing
The Starting Point of Wellbeing offers students advice and guidance on services related to wellbeing. We post links, tips and contact information here.
This article offers information on course practicalities for teachers.