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Many 1000s of studies have been conducted on the validity and diagnostic usefulness of students' evaluations of university teaching (SET), but there is a surprising lack of research on ratings by secondary students. Integrating these two disparate research areas, we evaluate the appropriateness of university SET instruments to secondary settings. Secondary students evaluated an effective and less effective teacher using items adapted from two university instruments, supplemented by items for secondary settings, and rated the appropriateness and importance of each item (N = 761 sets of ratings of more than 400 teachers, Years 7–11, 10 schools). All items were seen as appropriate and important. Factor analyses of responses to both instruments supported their a priori factor structure, and multitrait-multimethod analyses supported their convergent and discriminant validity. We discuss directions for further research at the secondary level based on the extensive body of research on the reliability, validity, and usefulness of SETs at the university level.


Institute for Positive Psychology and Education

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Open Access Journal Article

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Open Access