An Examination of Two Teacher Rating Scales: What Can They Tell Us about How Well We Teach?

Article excerpt

Teachers who want to know if they are teaching well, or not-so-well, are constantly looking around for teacher evaluation survey-type forms that might provide them with insight regarding how they are doing. The present study offers two such survey forms. Briefly stated, in the present study 36 college students were surveyed twice (about two weeks apart), on two distinctively different teacher rating scales (i.e., the "Teacher Effectiveness Questionnaire" ["TEQ"; Parish & Stallings, 1992]), and the "Motivating Students Checklist" ("MSC," introduced here) in an attempt to establish both scales' concurrent validity, as well as their test-retest reliability too. Since both teacher rating forms approach the teacher-rating process from different perspectives, the results should be both interesting and insightful. More specifically, The "TEQ" basically puts forward the "Quality School" (Glasser, 1990) notion regarding how teachers could/should gain entry into their students' "quality worlds." In contrast, the "MSC" simply describes various well-tested "teaching techniques" that are thought to be based upon sound teaching practices, and then seeks to determine if teachers use them or not.

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Discerning "good teachers," and/or "good teaching practices" has been a goal of administrators and educators alike for many, many years. Basically, many scales have been developed, but have generally not provided the insight that was sought in most instances. What is really needed is a highly reliable or consistent measure of classroom-related effectiveness, plus one that is very valid or accurate in discerning who is a "good teacher," and who is not. One such scale is the "Teacher Effectiveness Questionnaire," or "TEQ," which was developed by Parish and Stallings in 1992, and is thought to fit the "Quality School" model regarding "what" teachers might do in order to gain entry into their students' "quality worlds." In other words, this scale simply asks the students questions, that if answered "yes," should mean that (1) the teachers are teaching effectively, and that (2) they will more likely be admitted into their students' "quality worlds."

In contrast, another approach to evaluating teacher instruction is based upon the notion that "good teachers" will use particular teaching strategies, so if you use such strategies you should be a good teacher. The "Motivating Students' Checklist" ("MSC"), which will be introduced here, is one such scale that adheres to this model.

In the present study these two teacher evaluation forms will both be employed, and their results will be compared to each other (as a way of establishing their "concurrent validity"), as well as to themselves, over time (as a way of establishing each scale's "test-retest reliability").

Method

A total of 36 college students, enrolled in three separate courses at a small, Midwestern, liberal arts university completed the Teacher Effectiveness Question (TEQ; Parish & Stallings, 1992) and the Motivating Students Checklist (MSC; introduced here. Please see Table 1) twice, about two weeks apart. The order of these surveys was counterbalanced.

Results and Discussion

A series of Pearson product-moment correlations were computed in the present study. Regarding the two scales' test-retest reliabilities, the "TEQ" was actually not found to be a very reliable scale (r = . …