This section provides resources to enhance evidence-based practice at UWS. It's important that we offer evidence-based resources so you can be confident our recommendations are sourced and supported by appropriate academic literature. If you have your own examples of evidence-based practice, please contact us at UWSAcademy@uws.ac.uk; we're looking to share good practice throughout the institution.
Apart from formal courses and schemes like the Postgraduate Certificate in Academic Practice and the University’s professional recognition framework, sALTiRE, peer observation or peer review of teaching is not compulsory at UWS. That’s not to say that peer observation isn’t happening; many of you will have been involved in peer observation schemes at a local level, and hopefully everyone who has been observed or observed in these schemes has found them useful. Certainly, there is much evidence that peer observation can enhance the quality of teaching (Peel, 2005; Bell and Mladenovic, 2008; Mueller and Schroeder, 2018).
The resources here have been produced or selected with the managers and mentors of newer staff in mind. Perhaps you think it would be useful and supportive to observe the new staff member and provide them with developmental feedback, or perhaps you are considering setting up a local peer observation scheme? Or perhaps you as an individual would simply like to be observed and be offered feedback on your practice? Contact us on UWSAcademy@uws.ac.uk to arrange this. Whatever your interest, there will be greater engagement with and benefit from a peer observation scheme that operates in a collegiate manner, rather than staff being obliged to take part.
Most peer observation of teaching schemes focus on classroom-based teaching and most frequently on the lecture. As teaching methodologies continue to evolve, we are supporting the development of those methodologies. UWS Academy can provide feedback and advice on lab or field-based learning as well as small group formats, including tutorials and active or flipped learning classes. As more and more of our programmes and modules go online, there is increasing interest in our development as online teachers; Jones and Gallen (2016) have considered the role of peer observation in synchronous online teaching, and Edgehill University has provided guidance on observing all forms of online design and teaching – it can be accessed here.
We provide a number of resources here. These include two narrated PowerPoints giving a short introduction to the purpose and processes of peer observation, a suggested checklist of what might be observed and a proforma to allow you to provide feedback and/or reflect on feedback received on a class or session. Finally, we outline guidelines to the process we recommend you use.
Mark H. Jones & Anne-Marie Gallen, A-M. (2016) Peer observation, feedback and reflection for development of practice in synchronous online teaching. Innovations in Education and Teaching International, Vol.53(6), pp. 616-626. Available: https://doi.org/10.1080/14703297.2015.1025808
Peel, D. (2005) Peer observation as a transformatory tool? Teaching in Higher Education, Vol.10(4), pp 489-504. Available: https://doi.org/10.1080/13562510500239125
Bell, A. & Mladenovic, R. (2008) The benefits of peer observation of teaching for tutor development. Higher Education, Vol.55(6), pp. 735–752. Available: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10734-007-9093-1
Mueller, R. and Schroeder, M. (2018) From Seeing to Doing: Examining the Impact of Non-Evaluative Classroom Observation on Teaching Development, Innovative Higher Education, Vol.43(5), pp. 397–410. Available: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10755-018-9436-0