Faculty applaud arbiter’s decision on use of student evaluations for tenure, promotion decisions

August 30, 2018

Faculty across Canada are celebrating the decision of an Ontario arbiter ordering Ryerson University to ensure that student evaluations of teaching, or SETs, “are not used to measure teaching effectiveness for promotion or tenure.” The issue of using student evaluations for this purpose has been discussed in Ryerson’s collective bargaining sessions since 2003, with a formal grievance being filed in 2009. “We were delighted,” said Ryerson Computer Science Professor Sophie Quigley. “These are statistically correct arguments we’ve been making over the years, and it’s wonderful that reason has prevailed.” The arbiter’s conclusion that SETs are deeply problematic will “unleash debate at universities across the country,” said David Robinson, executive director of the Canadian Association of University Teachers. University Affairs