SIFT: Student Instructional Feedback Technique

Student Instructional Feedback Technique with an image of a sifter inside a lightbulb

The Student Instructional Feedback Technique, or SIFT, is a non-evaluative, confidential way to see how your course is going before the semester is over.

There are 5 steps to the SIFT:

  1. You meet with a consultant to determine goals for your SIFT.
  2. Consultant prepares a survey and small group processing activities that align to your goals.
  3. Consultant visits your course (without you!) to collect data from students.
    1. Using QR codes and accessible weblinks, consultant administers a Google Form to your students (sample form)
    2. Students gather in small groups to develop consensus (sample slides)
    3. Full group polling and discussion regarding major themes
  4. The consultant sifts through data to identify teaching strengths & opportunities.
  5. You receive confidential feedback (written & verbal) about possible next steps in your teaching.

This process is triply confidential, meaning that

  • consultants will not disclose who has requested a SIFT 
  • student feedback collected during the in-class portion is never shared verbatim with the instructor
  • feedback is provided directly to the instructor for their own use (and never to supervisors/chairs, although instructors can share results with whomever they choose)

For more information and/or to schedule a SIFT, contact Lindsay Masland at

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