Mid-module Evaluations

This collection of resources guides educators through the process of collecting feedback at the mid-point of a module. It includes a selection of ready-made tools for gathering feedback and links to material on interpreting and responding to student feedback.

What is mid-module feedback

Gathering informal feedback from students at the mid-module point can have a significant and positive impact on the student experience for two reasons. Firstly, it enables formative feedback that might result in useful adaptations to the second half of the module. Even small changes can be meaningful. Secondly, the process creates opportunities to engage students in a reflective conversation. The conversation itself empowers student voice and has value. 

Mid-module feedback enables a quick conversation about the initial assumptions made about a class, gaining insights from students, and developing a more comprehensive awareness of teaching practice. It is understood that changes are not always possible in response to student feedback, and the conversation with students about feedback should be direct and honest about this fact. Yet mid-point evaluations can suggest small modifications or easily implemented wins that can benefit students for the rest of the semester or be implemented in future iterations of a module. This practice is one of the most powerful ways to open communication between staff and students, strengthening the partnership and supporting the co-creation of learning.  

Who should run mid-module evaluations?

Mid-module evaluations can be administered by the module leader or teaching team at the mid-point of a module. For semester-long modules, this will usually be some time in weeks 5-6. End-module evaluations then follow in weeks 9-12 (in most areas end-module evaluations will run using Explorance Blue).
Mid-module evaluations are there for instructors and their students, and the data is intended only for the use of the module leader and/or teaching team.  

Mid-module evaluation methods

Mid-module feedback is formative and tends to focus on the following questions: 

  • What would students like to see more of?  
  • What would students like to see less of?  
  • What would students like to see done differently?  

Mid-module evaluations can be effectively run through several different methodologies. We recommend use of our mid-module evaluation MS Form. For those wishing to use a more bespoke approach, additional question banks and ideas for other ways to gather mid-module feedback are available below.  

These methodologies for gathering feedback draw on the work of colleagues at Michigan State University, McGill University, and the University of Toronto.  

Recommended mid-module evaluation survey

The recommended mid-module evaluation survey is available as an MS Form.* To use this survey please follow the steps below, ensuring that the survey is set up to be anonymous: 

  1. Follow the link to the recommended mid-module evaluation questionnaire. Click ‘Duplicate it’. 
The image displays a button reading 'duplicate it' and a description reading 'duplicate this form to use as your own'.

Select the 'duplicate' button to copy the survey. It will automatically open and be saved in the MS Forms section of your Office 365 account.

  1. Input your module name and code. Make any additional changes to the survey preamble and content.
  2. Select the three dots in the top-right hand corner of the page and navigate to ‘Settings.’
  3. Select ‘Only people in the University of Leeds can respond’ and ‘One response per person’. Ensure that the ‘Record name’ box is un-ticked so that student responses are anonymous. 
  4. In the ‘Settings’ tab set start and end dates, and a thank you message if preferred. 
  5. To share the survey, navigate to ‘collect responses’ in the top-right-hand corner of the page. 
A screen capture of the MS Form 'send and collect responses' menu. Items described in the instructions are underlined in red.

In the 'Send and collect responses' menu you will be able to check that your settings are correct. Please ensure that 'Record name' is left blank. To the right of the menu there are different options for sharing the form.

  1. You will be given the option to share the form using a link, an email or Teams message, or a QR code (the latter can be used to share the survey during teaching). 

If you would prefer to use a paper copy survey, duplicate and personalise the survey as described in points 1-2 above, then select the three dots in the top-right hand corner of the page and select ‘Print Form’.  

*The formatting of the MS Form linked above has been amended to make it easier to use on a mobile phone. A version of the form with original formatting remains available for those who wish to use it. 

Explorance Blue mid-module evaluation surveys for year-long modules 

For year-long modules (aka ‘long, thin’ modules or part term code 3 modules) there is an option to undertake a more formal evaluation using the University’s module evaluation software Explorance Blue. This is being rolled out at school level according to local practice. For further information on this, please contact TheLeedsPartnership@leeds.ac.uk.  

Alternative survey question sets

Alternative question set bank

For those wishing to gather more bespoke feedback, a bank of alternative question sets can be downloaded here. These allow colleagues to gather feedback on specific aspects of their module. Alternative questions include those relating to problem-solving or laboratory classes, questions for discussion-oriented classes, and questions for group work classes.

The question bank includes material adapted from Michigan State University and the University of Leeds.  

Creating your own evaluation questions

Alternatively, you could create your own questions to gather formative feedback on specific aspects of the course. If you deliver these questions via a survey, it is best for this to be short and to include a combination of scaled and open-ended questions which will help you to gain feedback on the module. The focus of questions should be at the module level, rather than being on teaching staff.   

To design mid-module evaluation questions, you might to begin by considering your goals for the evaluation and designing 2-3 questions to help you gather information around these. It is advisable that the focus is on areas where you are able or willing to make changes. You might ask about things such as content, learning environment, assessment expectations and experience, feedback, and organisation. (For an in-depth guide to the creation of mid-module questions, see the University of Toronto Centre for Teaching Support and Innovation, ‘Gathering Formative Feedback with Mid-Course Evaluations.’)

Other mid-module evaluation methodologies

Informal discussion in class: 

Led by the module-leader, seminar tutor, or member of the teaching team, informal discussions can be a great way to gather feedback. We suggest using template questions to design 2-3 prompts to invite feedback from students. Further guidance on introducing mid-point evaluations to students is available below. You may then discuss this. 

Start/ stop/ continue: 

This asks students to evaluate the module by asking them to reflect on what they would like added or included, what they feel is detracting from it, and what current activity they find beneficial. Software such as Mentimeter can be used to gather this feedback anonymously. 

Student-led discussion with facilitation from a colleague or student representative: 

For those wishing to operate a student-led evaluation, colleagues at McGill University have designed a methodology for a student-facilitated mid-module evaluation. The steps are as follows:

  • The teaching team identifies 2-3 questions they wish to ask students and invites a colleague external to the course, or a student representative, to facilitate a 20-30 minute discussion using these questions. 
  • During this discussion, the teaching team leaves the room/call. Students are divided into smaller groups and asked to share their perspectives, reporting back to the facilitator. 
  • The teaching team then meets with the facilitator who delivers the summarised feedback (McGill Teaching and Learning Services, ‘Mid-Course Evaluation’).

Introducing mid-module evaluations to students

Whatever method you choose for your mid-module evaluation, we suggest introducing the feedback gathering activity in a way that helps students to understand that they are taking part in an open and constructive conversation. This might include:

Student-facing resources relating to how to provide constructive feedback are available here. 

Allowing sufficient time for the exercise is also beneficial. 

Guidance on responding to mid-module evaluation feedback and closing the feedback loop

Once you have gathered feedback, we suggest evaluating it thematically and then closing the loop with students by reporting back to them. Guidance for interpreting and responding to student feedback is available on the OD&PL website.