SRTI and Performance Appraisal

A Guide for Using SRTI Results to Inform Merit, Promotion, and Tenure

The Student Response to Instruction (SRTI) was developed to provide a valid and reliable campus-wide tool for collecting students’ perspectives about their instructional experiences. The SRTI is designed to collect both formative feedback, where faculty use data for the improvement of individual teaching practices, and summative feedback, where instructors, personnel committees, departmental chairs, and deans use the data as one indicator of teaching performance for merit, promotion, and tenure decisions. (An overview of the development, reliability, and validity of SRTI can be found in the following research brief: SRTI Reliability and Validity Research.)

Keep in mind that SRTI ratings represent students’ views on teaching effectiveness. Teaching is a complex and multifaceted activity and multiple sources of information should be considered to appropriately reflect the various dimensions of overall teaching performance (Cashin, 1999; Centra, 1993; Theall and Franklin, 2001). While students can appropriately provide feedback on aspects of teaching that reflect the student experience with an instructor (e.g., student-instructor relationships, instructor ability to communicate clearly, fairness of grading), they are not the best judges of other components of teaching, such as instructor subject matter expertise (e.g., knowledge in major field, course syllabus and reading list, selection of course objectives and materials).

It is essential that personnel committees use SRTI results in conjunction with other sources of information to evaluate teaching performance. The Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL) maintains a collection of materials on the use of additional sources of information to evaluate teaching, including peer review of course materials, classroom observation, and teaching portfolios. 

This guide is designed to help you effectively incorporate SRTI results into the summative evaluation process.