Abstract by Mitchell Wassom

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Presenter's Name

Mitchell Wassom

Degree Level


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Faculty Advisor

Dennis Tolley


Assessing, Monitoring, and Managing Bias


Many colleges and universities use student evaluations of professors to evaluate teacher
performance. However, as shown in the literature, there are several sources of bias in
students’ evaluation of teacher performance. Gender, ethnicity and age are among those
factors that tend to bias students’ assessments. This research project entails three facets of
bias. First is to develop a quantitative measure of the severity of bias. Bias is multivariate with
levels of bias regarding competency, warmth, clarity and engagement showing different
patterns of bias across age/gender/ethnicity metrics. Second, is monitoring bias. The level and
type of bias is subject to change over time as the student body changes. Third is management
of bias. How does a person use the biased data coming from student evaluations to improve
teaching or the assess an employee. This presentation reviews these issues and proposes a
statistical model for managing bias.