I don’t like online teacher rating sites as I think they draw the unhappiest students, but here’s some more upbeat news from the mega player in the student ratings universe, RateMyProfessors.com.
The site ranked the highest rated college professors and universities based on student ratings. The highest rated community college professor this year is Margie Lewkowicz, a mathematics instructor at Georgia Perimeter College.
One of the posts that pushed Dr. Lewkowicz to the top in the nation was: “She is such a great teacher. Very passionate about what she teaches…undoubtedly one of the best prof I’ve ever had…highly recommended.”
For the first time, the ranking list includes university rankings, based on professor and campus ratings. While the top campuses used to be determined by how well their professors ranked, students decided campus ratings this year on additional factors, reputation, location, career opportunities, school library, campus grounds and common areas, Internet speed on campus, campus food, clubs and events, social activities and whether or not students are happy with their decision to attend the school.
In the list of the top 25 four-year universities, the University of Georgia nabbed the fifth spot, behind No. 1 Brigham Young, No. 2 Florida State, No. 3 University of Wisconsin-Madison and No. 4 University of Michigan.
Georgia Perimeter ranked 18th among community colleges, according to the student rankings.
RateMyProfessors.com has a long explanation on its methodology in these awards: Each individual professor’s rating is first standardized and subsequently the standardized scores for the years 2008, 2009 and 2010 are weighted, putting more weight on recent years and fewer weight on ratings from the past (15% for 2008, 25% for 2009 and 60% for 2010). It should also be noted that school size does not affect the outcome of the lists nor does it give professors from larger schools an advantage over their corollaries from smaller schools. We performed a regression analysis on school size vs. number of ratings and found no noteworthy correlation.
I still admit reservations about these sites. My daughter talked about a UGA classmate who hardly ever came to a philosophy class and, when he did, he never paid attention. When the student did poorly on the final exam, he used class time to go to RateMyProfessors.com. and post a blistering attack of the professor as incompetent.
--From Maureen Downey, for the AJC Get Schooled blog