AWA1: Issue

AWA ESSAYS: Analyze Issues
ESSAY QUESTION:
“The mission of a university is to educate its students. Therefore, a professor’s pay and promotions should be based primarily on students’ evaluations of his or her courses.”Discuss the extent to which you agree or disagree with the opinion stated above. Support your views with reasons and/or examples from your own experience, observations, or reading.
YOUR RESPONSE:
The statement says that a professor’s pay should be based primarily on student’s evaluation. Though I agree that students’ feedback should be considered in the evaluation of a teacher’s performance, I think that there are still other factors that should be taken into account.A teacher’s main responsibility is to educate the students. Learning happens only when the students enjoy the process of learning and hence appreciate the teacher. Since, students at university level are mature enough to make the distinction between good teaching and bad teaching, it’s logical to take their feedback in consideration while deciding a professor’s pay and promotions.

It’s also true that teaching is not the only things a professor is involved in. It may be the case that a particular teacher is involved in some research work due to which she doesn’t teach many courses. Though the teacher is not actively involved in teaching, she may still be an inspiration for the students. This is something which can’t be quantified through course feedback from the students.

It’s true that the students’ evaluation can be a good criterion for evaluating a teachers performance, but there may be cases when students may not be the best judges. All courses are not alike. While some courses can be extremely interesting due to their content, others might not be as interesting. For example, a project based course is interesting and gives the teacher a lot of options to be creative and make the course more interesting. On the contrary, a theory based class won’t be as interesting. Comparing two teachers who teach those two different courses on the basis of student feedback may not be a correct judgement of their teaching.

In conclusion, it may be said that though student’s evaluation must be taken in account while deciding a teacher’s pay and promotions, other factors such as student’s performance in the course and teacher’s contribution to research should also be taken into account.

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