UW Seattle

OEA has provided paper-based course evaluation services to UW Seattle since the early 1970’s.  The Instructional Assessment System (IAS) has served us well, but the increasing number of online and hybrid courses calls for a more flexible system.  We recently redeveloped the database application supporting our course evaluation services to provide online course evaluations in addition to our standard paper-based forms. 

The new IASystem™ application enables faculty and departments to evaluate any class either online or on paper, and facilitates management of the course evaluation process by departmental coordinators through an online interface.  The same evaluation forms are available for both online and paper evaluations, and the same reports are available.  All evaluation results are archived in a common database, and ratings can be summarized and compared across instructors and/or courses regardless of evaluation modality.  For more information see:

Requesting Course Evaluations


    • Request paper-based evaluations for individual classes using our online order form.


    • Request paper-based evaluations for multiple classes by emailing a spreadsheet to iasuw@uw.edu.
    • Request paper-based or online evaluations using the new IASystem™ online interface.  To be added as a coordinator, please contact our office at iasuw@uw.edu.

IASystem™ Implementation Timeline

IASystem™ has been pilot tested in the iSchool, Law School, and at UW Tacoma for the past two years.  However, implementing the new system in the complex academic environment of UW Seattle will undoubtedly reveal special cases and exceptions that we haven’t yet anticipated.  For this reason, we are introducing IASystem™ gradually over the course of the 2013-14 academic year.  All of the capabilities of our paper-based system will be available for online evaluations by Autumn 2014, including the ability for faculty to add their own questions.



  • Departmental coordinators introduced to IASystem™ online interface
  • Faculty request paper evaluations through online order form or their departmental coordinator.  Online evaluations may only be requested by departmental coordinators.



  • Additional training sessions for new departmental coordinators
  • Campus-wide outreach and communication to faculty about the availability of online evaluations
  • Informational meetings with departmental curriculum committees regarding departmental online evaluation policies



  • Informational meetings with departmental committees continued


  • IASystem™ faculty interface introduced for instructors to view their own evaluations and course summary reports



  • Expanded IASystem™ faculty interface for instructors to add their own course-specific questions to an online evaluation and save instructor questions in their own item bank

Online Response Rates

Many institutions have experienced a reduction in response rates when transitioning from paper-based to online evaluations.  This is of particular concern because low response rates reduce the usefulness of evaluation results in decision-making.  Institutions have found several effective strategies to maintain online response rates.

IASystem™ emails students and instructors with the evaluation link at the beginning of the online evaluation period and sends additional reminders to non-responding students.  We are investigating the possibility of automatically inserting evaluation links in Canvas or students’ MyUW pages.

To improve response rates, faculty can:

  • Communicate the importance of course evaluations – most students do not believe results are used to improve courses and aren’t aware they inform merit, promotion and tenure decisions as well as program accreditation.
  • Administer online course evaluations in class (students can respond on mobile devices as well as laptops)
  • Set an evaluation “open” period that fits in with the flow of the course
  • Include the evaluation schedule and link in the online syllabus
  • Notify students in advance of the upcoming evaluation period and follow up with in-class reminders

Contact Us:


Raquel Chavez
IASystem™ Program Specialist
(206) 616-7188 (voice)
(206) 543-3961 (fax)


OEA Main Office
Roosevelt Commons B, Suite 430

4311 11th Ave. NE
Box 354987
Seattle, WA 98195-4987


OEA Satellite Office
Mary Gates Hall, Room 056

Box 354987