The relationship between professional behaviour grades and tutor performance ratings in problem-based learning.Med Educ. 2006 Feb; 40(2):180-6.ME
We investigated the influence of harsh grading by tutors on tutor performance rating by students.
A total of 187 tutors assessed students' professional behaviour in tutorial groups. Students rated tutor performance after receiving their grades for professional behaviour. In addition, students were asked to indicate whether they perceived their professional behaviour grades as too positive, adequate or too negative. This was considered to reflect tutors' harshness of grading. Students also rated the quality of the feedback they received from tutors with respect to their grades.
Professional behaviour grades that students perceived as too negative, adequate or too positive were associated with tutor performance ratings of 7.4 (SD = 0.9, scale 1-10, n = 33), 7.7 (SD = 0.9, scale 1-10, n = 95) and 7.5 (SD = 0.8, scale 1-10, n = 59), respectively. Harshness of grading did not influence tutor performance ratings significantly. Tutor ratings were predicted more effectively by the quality of the feedback tutors provided on grades than by the harshness of grading.
Tutor performance ratings were not related significantly to harshness of grading. Two explanations can be given: (1) tutor performance ratings were based on rating by groups of students and (2) the percentage of tutors who rated students' professional behaviour as unsatisfactory was low. The strong relationship between tutor performance ratings and the adequacy of the feedback given by tutors suggests that the tutor performance ratings collected in this study are a valid measure of the quality of their teaching, although, for a full picture of teaching quality, more measures will be needed.