Mid-term Course Evaluations and Mid-term Progress Reporting

Presented by Julia Leusner


The Logistics



  • students would be asked to fill out course evaluations halfway through the semester, around the same time the mid-term grades would be available
  • these evaluations would be similar to the ones that are already given out at the end of a course
  • feedback would be provided on the course from the students’ perspective



  • the mid-term grades would be reported through the Student Information System (SIS)
  • mid-term grades reported would be unofficial and not displayed as a permanent transcription of a student’s academic history
  • students performing unsatisfactorily will be reported to ALAC so specific intervention methods can be recommended


Benefits for Both Sides (from a student perspective)



  • mid-term course evaluations would help “pace” the course
  • mid-term progress reporting would help determine whether or not students are grasping the material
  • grade modifiers could be incorporated into the progress reporting



  • drop deadline would be easier to handle because students would be aware of informal grade in class before it is too late; students feel this will reduce stress
  • it would warn students if they need to spend more time on one class or less time on another class based upon the reported mid-term grades
  • fosters more communication between the faculty and students—intervention will occur if a student is reported as performing unsatisfactorily in a class
  • the Early Warning System would be 100% effective in reporting, compared to just over 10% of upper-class professors and 53% of freshmen professors currently reporting


Statistics & Research


  • A report at the 2002 SAIR (Southern Association for Institutional Research) Conference in Baton Rouge reported that roughly one year after the implementation of midterm progress reports, “nearly 45% of end-of-semester grades increased from the midterm grade, while little more than a quarter decreased or stayed the same.”
  • AACRAO’s College and University published a study of 420 freshmen at Miami University that showed students worked harder to improve their performance upon finding that their mid-term grades were worse than they presumed.
  • A study conducted by Arnold Rose and printed in the Journal of Higher Education cited that students tend to overestimate their grades
  • Also in AACRAO’s study it was state that, “mid-term grades possibly served as stimuli to bring [these students’] estimates closer to reality or else served to motivate the necessary behavior to achieve the desired level of academic performance
  • Nearly ¾ of all four-year colleges and universities among the 621 polled annually by the Policy Center on the First Year of College indicate they collect and report mid-term grades
  • In a recent poll conducted by George Mason University, it was found that 72% of students sought greater assistance in the form of instructor input, improved study habits, academic advisor intervention, or other resources as a result of getting a mid-term grade that was not as high as desired; only 3% of students at GMU disagreed with the usefulness of mid-term progress reports after getting a mid-term grade that was not as high as desired
  • Schools partaking in some type of mid-term progress reporting system:

                  -University of Pennsylvania

                  -Cornell University

                  -Brown University

                  -Yale University


                  -University of Connecticut


Support for Mid-term Course Evaluations and Mid-term Progress Reporting


  • Advising and Learning Assistance Center (ALAC)
  • Office of the Registrar
  • Student Senate
  • Student Advisory Committee to the Dean of Engineering
  • Many other students




We are just missing feedback from you, the faculty. Any and all questions or comments are appreciated.