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    May 9, 2023

    How to Conduct a Teacher Observation Effectively

    Any company that provides comprehensive safety training to their workers needs to know that the individuals providing that training are doing so effectively. Therefore, it becomes necessary to evaluate instructors occasionally. 

    One excellent evaluation method is by conducting a regular teacher observation to gauge their performance. Here’s what you should know about how to conduct a teacher observation effectively.

    What to Look for During a Teacher Observation

    While the subject matter that your instructor is teaching will differ from course to course and even day to day, there are universal things you should look for whenever conducting a teacher observation. We’ve compiled a detailed list of elements to evaluate, which includes how they present course materials, how student interaction is handled, and how much facility they have with the source material. Here’s even more detail for you to consider during your own observations.

    For organizational skills, teachers should be observed to see if they are:

    • presenting an overview of each lesson
    • pacing the lesson appropriately
    • presenting topics in logical sequences
    • relating current lessons to previous and/or future ones
    • summarizing the major points of each lesson

    For curriculum presentation, teachers need to be observed for:

    • properly explaining both major and minor points clearly
    • defining any unfamiliar concepts, terms, and principles effectively
    • clarifying points by using relevant examples
    • showing all steps in complex solutions or processes
    • providing explanations that are sufficient whenever dealing with complex or advanced material
    • emphasizing the most important points of the material
    • providing notes and handouts that support student comprehension
    • integrating “real world” examples where applicable
    • prioritizing active learning methods over passive ones

    For student interaction, teachers should be observed demonstrating:

    • active encouragement for students to ask questions
    • asking questions in return to gauge student understanding of the material
    • students have been provided sufficient time to answer these questions
    • good, active listening whenever students ask a question or make a comment
    • appropriate responses to those questions and comments
    • the ability to restate questions and answers when necessary
    • respect for diversity and equality within the classroom

    Finally, teachers be observed demonstrating their expertise in the following ways:

    • showing they understand when they need to adapt the material they’re presenting to students or classes of differing levels
    • presenting material that’s been selected appropriately according to the class or course they’re currently teaching
    • showing they have a strong command of the subject matter

    Additional Elements of a Teacher Observation

    After you’ve initially observed your instructor and taken careful notes of their performance, summarize your findings to create an overall evaluation of their performance. Keep the answers to specific questions in mind and detail the instructor’s strengths, noting any weaknesses that need improvement, and how effective they were as an instructor overall. If there are previous observations on record, compare their performance over time to see if there have been any notable changes since the last evaluation.