A Study of Classroom Observation Procedures in Higher Education

Zachary G.C Kornhauser, Fordham University


Developmental theorists have long recognized the significance of higher education in facilitating student growth in a number of domains including identity, critical thinking, and reflective reasoning. In addition, empirical research has demonstrated the importance of specific instructor practices on fostering student development. The two most common methods of assessing instructors, student ratings and peer review, are useful tools but suffer from threats to reliability and validity. Instructional consultations, or classroom observations, are becoming an increasingly common method of assessing instructors, and empirical research has also established their utility. However, no study to date has systematically examined how these classroom observations have been conducted. The current study sought to explore how these processes are conducted across a sample (N=60) of American colleges and universities. Results indicate that while there is much variability across institutions in how classroom observations are conducted, there are also many similarities. Future work should seek to examine if these findings can be generalized to a more diverse sample of institutions.

Subject Area


Recommended Citation

Kornhauser, Zachary G.C, "A Study of Classroom Observation Procedures in Higher Education" (2011). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI13851758.