Encouraging Higher Response Rates for Online FCQs
As of fall 2017 all University of Colorado Faculty Course Questionnaires will be administered online. The following resources examine the issues around response rates for online vs pencil-and-paper FCQs and offer suggestions for encouraging higher response rates.
- Use this Sample Syllabus Entry to explain the importance of the course evaluations
- University of Colorado - Encouraging High Online Response Rates Web Site
- Extra Credit Micro-Incentives and Response Rates for Online Course Evaluations: Two Quasi-Experiments; Eric D. Sundstrom, Erin E. Hardin, and Matthew J. Shaffer; Teaching of Psychology, 2016, Vol. 43(4) 276-284
- The effect of incentives and other instructor-driven strategies to increase online student evaluation response rates; James Goodman, Robert Anson & Marcia Belcheir; Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education, Volume 40, 2015 - Issue 7, p 958-970
- The adequacy of response rates to online and paper surveys: what can be done?; Duncan D. Nulty; Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education, Volume 33, 2008 - Issue 3, p 301-314
Anecdote from David Anderson, Faculty Resource Center Director:
I and some of my colleagues in the Departments of Biology and Chemistry & Biochemistry have been using micro-incentives to encourage higher response rates. In my ~150-student Organic Chemistry course, for example, I give every student in class some extra credit points based on the response rate. (We cannot determine who has or has not completed the online FCQs, so the extra credit points have to be applied to all students.) Furthermore, I prorate the extra credit points to the response rate: ≥95% response earns 5 points, ≥94% earns 4 points, and so on. Over the last two years I have averaged about a 94% response rate. Given that I have roughly 1000 points overall in my course, this extra credit amounts to less than 0.5% of the total. Very few students' letter grades are affected by this. I understand that some faculty have concerns about giving extra credit points, but they certainly help with encouraging higher FCQ response rates.
Last updated January 12, 2020