Quality Manual

Policy for the collection and use of Student Evaluation of Teaching and Student Evaluation of Module surveys

This page contains the University's policy for the collection, use and publication of Student Evaluation of Teaching (SET) and Student Evaluation of Module (SEM) surveys. Its content applies to staff and students across all of the UK, China and Malaysia campuses.

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Evaluation of teaching processes are currently under review. Whilst work is ongoing to develop an alternative approach, Student Evaluation of Teaching (SET) surveys no longer take place for staff on the UK campus. Flag of United Kingdom

1. Frequency of collection of Student Evaluation of Teaching (SET) surveys

Includes: EVALUATE; exceptions; failure to meet targets; justification

1.1   Student Evaluation of Teaching (SET) data must be collected using EVALUATE. The normal expectation is that staff included in the policy (see Section 2. Identification of staff and modules for SET) should conduct at least one SET survey during an academic year. 

1.2   A School may decide in certain circumstances that some individuals are to be evaluated by SET more frequently over an agreed period of time. The following is a selection of such circumstances:

1.2.1   The individual is new to teaching and SET results will be useful to support the development of teaching skills.

1.2.2   The individual intends to apply for promotion and needs to collect SET over a period of time to fulfil the promotions criteria.

1.2.3   The individual has been identified through the Appraisal and Development Conversation (ADC) as needing to improve their teaching and frequent SET results are needed to track progress to.

1.3   If any cases arise where a member of teaching academic staff has not conducted at least one SET survey in an academic year this should be brought to the attention of the Faculty Associate Pro-Vice Chancellor (FAPVC) for Education and Student Experience, and justified.


2. Identification of staff and modules for SET

Includes: scope; Head of School responsibilities; relationship with previous SET; additional surveys

All Research and Teaching and Teaching-focused staff who are teaching on Campus Solutions registered modules must be evaluated by Student Evaluation of Teaching (SET). This applies regardless of the contracted hours with the University. Associates of the University can be evaluated by SET, including guest speakers and postgraduate research students who teach.

2.1   In rare cases a member of staff may only teach 4 hours or less in a teaching year. If this situation arises then the Head of School (or delegate) may decide that the individual should be exempt from SET, but they must have their teaching peer-observed.

2.2   The Head of School (or delegate) is responsible for identifying one module per year for which a member of staff should undertake SET.

2.3   That module should not normally be the same module that received SET the year before, and should where possible be a module for which the staff member is teaching a significant number of students (20 or more).

2.4   Any individual member of staff should be able to request additional SET surveys for any contribution they make to teaching for which they would like feedback (e.g. for professional development or module enhancement, or to support a promotion application or Lord Dearing Award application, etc.). Requests to set up additional SET surveys should be made directly to Student Services. Modules which are not in Campus Solutions can be evaluated by using a non-standard survey.


3. Staff responsibilities

Includes: opening and closing dates; provision of information; time; Blue Castle; EVALUATE; discussion of reports.

Staff who are being evaluated by Student Evaluation of Teaching (SET) have certain responsibilities that they must fulfil with support from their School. These are:

3.1   Ensure that an appropriate date and time for opening and closing the EVALUATE survey is agreed with the SET/SEM coordinator so as to maximise student participation.

3.2   Inform students at the appropriate time of the purpose of the survey and the period during which it will be live. 

3.3   Ensure that students have time to complete the survey.

3.4   Display the information necessary to students to enable them to complete the survey. This is the Blue Castle address and the PIN if a non-standard survey is being used.

3.5   Consider using the Survey Monitor (in Blue Castle) to encourage participation.

3.6   Inform the SET/SEM coordinator if a survey fails to run for any reason so that the survey can be re-opened.

3.7   Be prepared to discuss SET reports as part of the Appraisal and Development Conversation (ADC).

3.8   Understand that there are no circumstances in which a student’s responses can be changed. The student can request that their responses are deleted by emailing the Evaluate team, but will not be able to complete that particular survey again.

If you wish to request the deletion of your responses, please email: Evaluate@nottingham.ac.uk  Email

4. Access to SET results

Includes: confidentiality; permission to publish scores; promotions committee

4.1   Student Evaluation of Teaching (SET) results are regarded as confidential to the individual and a range of School, Faculty and University staff who have specified organisational roles to fulfil which require access to individual scores.

4.2   Staff should be permitted (but not required) to publish their SET scores.

4.3   Members of University Executive Board (UEB) and Associate Pro-Vice Chancellors (APVC) will have access to all Faculty and all School SET reports both for the current year and for all previous years. This will include the ability to view individual SET reports (both scores and comments).

4.4   Members of Promotions Committee will have access to the SET scores of individuals submitting promotion cases.

4.5   The Head of School has access to all individual SET reports within the School including scores and comments in the current year and in all previous years. The Head of School will also have access to the overall School SET report.

4.6   Other relevant Faculty and School based staff who might have good reason to be given access to individual reports can be identified by the APVC and Head of School. Levels of access may vary between Schools and Faculties but the following staff should be considered for access,

  • School Directors of Teaching and Learning (or equivalent)
  • Heads of Education and Student Experience (or equivalent)
  • Operations Managers
  • Appraisal and Development Conversation (ADC) Reviewers 

4.7   Other University Departments and individuals will from time to time require access to individual SET reports to fulfil their role or carry out a specific function. Examples include Human Resources for a range of actions including disciplinary, grievance and performance processes and the Lord Dearing Judging Panel.


5. Dealing with abusive comments

Includes: reporting abuse; University code of discipline; Student User Guide; disciplinary action

5.1   Abusive and personal comments are unacceptable and need to be removed from the EVALUATE system as quickly as possible.  

5.2   Any individual receiving a comment that they identify as being abusive should report the abuse to a person agreed by the school, e.g. Head of School, School Manager or Director of Learning and Teaching.  The abusive comment should be reported by the agreed person to the Evaluate team who will remove the student’s ratings and abusive comments.

If you wish to report an abusive comment, please email: Evaluate@nottingham.ac.uk  Email

5.3   In deciding whether a comment is abusive the agreed person should use common sense principles and if necessary refer to the University Code of Discipline and the Code of Practice for users of the University computing facilities.

More information can be found here:

5.4   Students are informed of the seriousness of submitting abusive comments in the Student User Guide and it is recommended that Schools remind students of their responsibilities and indicate the seriousness of breaking the Discipline and Computing Facilities Codes.

5.5   In principle authors of offensive comments can be identified and disciplinary action could be taken if deemed necessary.


1. Collection of Student Evaluation of Module (SEM) surveys

Includes: EVALUATE; modules taught by more than one teacher

1.1   Student Evaluation of Module (SEM) data must be collected using EVALUATE. The normal expectation will be that every module should be subject to SEM every academic year. 

1.2   Where a module is taught by more than one teacher the School should appoint one of the teaching team to collect the SEM evaluation. This will usually be the module convenor, the senior teacher or the team lead.


2. Publication of SEM results

Includes: scores, comments and responses; availability; feedback or module review template; location

2.1   Scores, comments and responses to Student Evaluation of Module (SEM) surveys must be published by the School within a reasonable time frame from the close of the SEM survey.

2.2   Published scores must be available to students who have completed the module and to students who might be undertaking the module in the future.

2.3   SEM scores should be published within a feedback or module review template (one is available in Blue Castle) and the teacher/module convenor must provide a commentary in response to the scores and comments. This commentary must indicate any changes to the module that have arisen as a result of student feedback.

2.4   SEM scores must be published in a location which is available to all students across the University. This might be on the School Content Management System (CMS) or via a ‘community’ page in Moodle.

If you have any problems or queries relating to this page, please contact:

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This content was last modified on 07 December 2022

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