In most learning institutions, students attend school but fail to achieve their academic expectations due to inadequate teaching and learning practices. Since educational achievement is the foundation to a better future academically and professionally, there is a rising need to address the shortcomings and create a learning environment that ensures positive results (Mandouit, 2018). Various studies have investigated improving the teaching and learning process, such as increasing teachers’ professional skills through additional course content and quality studies. However, Luke Mandouit, a research expert in educational matters, observes that students can help in improving teaching and learning skills through student feedback on teachers. In his article ‘Using Student Feedback to Improve Teaching,’ Mandouit investigates the effectiveness of student feedback to improve teaching practices and professional development. This paper explores Mandouit’s research by explaining and reviewing his research purpose, methodology, and findings to determine whether student feedback is an effective tool for teaching and professional development among teachers.
The Study Purpose
The researcher aims to investigate the impact of student feedback in enhancing teaching and learning methods in secondary education. The researcher seeks to establish that students’ feedback can improve teaching practice and enhance learning (Mandouit, 2018). Secondly, the researcher uses this investigation to analyze teachers’ responsiveness to student feedback in teaching practice. Finally, the researcher uses this study to explore the importance of professional development for effective teaching using student feedback. The investigators use two research questions to guide this research. The first question investigates whether student feedback is a practical approach to enhancing a teacher’s practice. The second question explores the positive impacts of effectively applying student feedback in teaching and learning.
The researcher used a mixed research design in the investigations. The researchers use both qualitative and quantitative methods of collecting and presenting data. Qualitative methods of collecting data include using existing literature, group discussion forums, and interviews (Mandouit, 2018). The researcher uses the qualitative approach to gather general information from participants, giving a broader understanding of the topic of interest. The quantitative methods used are the online surveys with open-ended questions as well as agree and disagree questionnaire, which are analyzed and presented on a numerical table indicating the frequencies (Mandouit, 2018). Additionally, the action research methodology uses the triangulation design to collect data in three phases that ensure an in-depth analysis and data interpretation to obtain conclusive results.
Data Collection Tools
This research’s data collecting tools are suitable for the education setting and the topic of interest. Using existing data and open-ended opinions for this study is appropriate since it concerns the social and academic well-being of the students. However, collecting data through online surveys may be subject to biases or compromised and lack credibility (Mandouit, 2018). Verbal one-on-one interviews are more suitable for the research where the researcher can observe students’ behavior while answering questions. Group discussions and interviews are appropriate in developing insight and reflecting on students’ responses which can help teachers expand their professional skills. The interpretation process of comparing teachers’ and students’ responses in each cycle is also suitable for this research because it shows the changes and improvements of teaching and learning experiences over time.
Although the research method effectively collects data for this research, it may not be applicable in improving curriculum and teaching methods in my local setting. Elementary students can provide feedback but will need the guidance of an adult in filling the survey forms, which may be compromised. Children need qualitative data collection methods such as observation and note-taking during the research. Additionally, elementary children may shy from voicing their ideas or fail to understand the meaning of giving feedback.
Investigations regarding the resourcefulness of student feedback in teaching indicate that the feedback has a significant impact on teaching practice if teachers get professional support on engaging learners. At the end of the investigation, both teachers and students had most similar views on the effectiveness of student feedback as a teaching method. Trainers who agree with the approach feel that student feedback is accurate and insightful of their teaching methods (Mandouit, 2018). Most teachers had a high opinion of the teaching method because it helps understand the students better and improve their teaching methods by informing teachers on the individual need of each learner.
Additionally, teachers viewed the teaching method as an effective way of understanding the learner’s classroom experience, monitoring classroom activities, understanding how each student is fairing with course content and individual needs. Despite the positive impact of student feedback in teaching, the study reveals that students could only respond to non-technical teaching techniques like what motivates them to learn. Findings on teachers’ responsiveness to the teaching technique show that most teachers improved their teaching techniques over the study period.
During the final interview with students, the researcher states that most students were satisfied with their instructors teaching methods which adhere to their learning needs. Trainers also indicated that they had more reflection and insight from student feedback which enhanced the teaching methods regardless of professional support in some areas. Finally, professional training has less impact in improving teaching practices, but it is significant in promoting student feedback as a teaching method (Mandouit, 2018). Insisting on professional development encourages teachers to focus more on acquiring skills than achieving set goals with minimal skills.
The Impact of this Research Findings on Teachers
Through the research findings, teachers are more aware of their students’ needs collectively and individually. Student feedback enables instructors to perceive the needs of each student and find ways of addressing each student. Teachers can improve teaching practice through student feedback. Communicating with students helps teachers identify the weak and strong areas of their teaching practice, making it easier to focus on the strengths (Mandouit, 2018). Student feedback develops a teacher’s professional skills over time which can contribute to achieving more meaningful goals in teaching. The feedback helps analyze teaching methods and pick the most recommended practices that give positive results. Close interactions with students and their views help plan classroom activities, sitting arrangements, and monitor classroom behaviors.
The Impact of this Findings on Students
Students can voice their thoughts and ideas through feedback, which helps address the challenging areas during learning. When an instructor considers students’ feedback in teaching, it motivates students to study and improves confidence in their ability to provide ideas. Student feedback encourages learning since learners often communicate and engage with their instructors, impacting their performance and quality of work (Mandouit, 2018). When students provide feedback, teachers respond by practicing the preferred teaching methods for the learner to understand better, which improves the acquisition of knowledge and skills. Focusing on individual and group learning preferences ensures frequent interaction with the instructor and help develop, improve, and achieve a student’s academic outcome.
The Influence of the Findings in Curriculum Development Personally and in District Schools
The findings of this research will significantly influence how I plan my work. I will focus on student feedback when planning class activities and assigning tasks according to the curriculum. Student feedback helps develop the curriculum according to students’ needs, allowing me to create and improve the course content to meet most personal and group needs. Additionally, the findings will help seek student feedback to assess my teaching practices. I will be able to realize my solid and weak teaching practices and work on improvements. I will have a periodic assessment of my teaching methods to gauge the improvement frequency and the level of professional development in a given period. The research findings can also help district schools develop curricula, enhance teaching practices, and develop teachers professionally. For instance, teachers learn that student feedback is a tool for reflection on their teaching methods and can help decide the most effective teaching practice (Mandouit, 2018). Instructors can also develop tasks and activities that students prefer in their syllabus, enhancing curriculum development over time.
This research method is effective in exploring the subject under investigation. The mixed research methodology provides both qualitative and quantitative aspects of the interest area, which gives a variety of data for analysis. The action research cycle effectively understands the students’ views on trainers teaching methods at the beginning of the study, which helps evaluate outcomes and improvements at the end of the study. Giving teachers time to reflect on students’ responses allows teachers to polish and consider areas for improvement according to their student’s needs. Using open-ended survey questionnaires to collect data will enable participants to voice their ideas independently. The independent opinions give more credibility to the data and help discover a wide range of information. Discussion forums and interviews among particular groups allow teachers to reflect and discuss different ways of improving teaching practices and professional development. Overall, the research methodology is appropriate for this research, and I recommend it for other studies regarding curriculum development and teaching methods in education.
Mandouit, L. (2018). Using student feedback to improve teaching. Educational Action Research, 26(5), 755-769. Web.