Observation Best Practices

Classroom Observation Checklist (Center for Excellence in Teaching, University of Southern California) – A customizable tiered checklist of various criteria based on recommended best practices for instruction at USC.  

Sample Observation Forms (Center for Teaching Innovation & Support, University of Toronto) – This site offers a number of different ways to log observations – from pre-observation forms to narrative logs, open-ended forms, checklists, online course observations, and post-observation debriefing questions. 

Online Course Observation – Faculty Evaluation Form & Guidelines (Academic Technology, Michigan State University) – Includes an overview of the scope, purpose, process and general guidelines for faculty observations, in addition to an adaptable course observation form, it also offers pre & post-observation forms easily editable to suit any observation.

A Peer Review Guide for Face-to-Face and Hybrid Courses (Penn State University) – Seeking observations regarding seven teaching principles (encourages contact between students and faculty; develops reciprocity and cooperation among students; encourages active learning; gives prompt feedback; emphasizes time on task; communicates high expectations; and respects diverse talents and ways of learning), this form offers examples of success for each criterion, and space to note evidence, strengths and areas for improvement.  

Resources for Observing Teaching in Higher Education (Office of Teaching Effectiveness & Innovation, Clemson University) – This document offers resources and lists additional readings for those looking to explore effective teaching and/or observations. It outlines protocols, a schedule, cover sheet to outline course context, observational worksheet and post-observation questionnaire.