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Definition of Peer Review

Definition of Peers

Types of Reviews

Formative Procedures

Summative Procedures

Summary of Best Practices

References and Resources


Who are peer reviewers?

The word peer means "a person of equal standing" but in the context of the peer review of teaching the definition is expanded to include faculty members of the same or different ranks who might also be referred to as colleagues or mentors.

For formative reviews of teaching, the peer reviewers may be colleagues of any rank mutually agreed upon by the faculty member and the department head or academic administrator. The peer reviewers may be selected from inside or outside the department. In small departments or in highly specialized disciplines, it may be difficult to find colleagues who can provide the requested insights within the same department. Whenever possible formative reviewers should be knowledgeable of the discipline and/or the pedagogical strategies being applied. Ideally, the formative reviewer/s should not participate in the summative review process.

In summative reviews of teaching, the peer reviewers are typically colleagues of the same or higher rank who are members of the department's personnel committee. The purpose of the review is to provide a basis for making a personnel recommendation on reappointment, promotion, tenure or other performance assessment related to teaching performance. Summative review may include review by outside experts of course materials. Whenever possible the summative reviewer/s should be different from the formative reviewer/s.







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Last Updated:
Wednesday, September 24, 2003