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A little TED goes a long way: Avoiding survey fatigue

Tired of all those emails inviting you to participate in online surveys?

Spare a thought for Macquarie students, who in the past might have been asked to ​complete more than 10 student survey forms​ in​ the same study period.  Over-surveying leads to survey fatigue, and ultimately disengagement – which in turn has a negative impact on your ​survey response rates.

Here are 3 questions to consider before you order a TEDS survey:

1. Is now the right time?

The general guideline is to use a formal TEDS unit survey only once every three offerings. If you survey more than that, it should only be because you’ve made a significant change to the unit or have a special purpose in mind. Your department now has a “recommendations” report indicating how long it has been since your unit received a valid survey.

2. What else could I do?

Surveys aren’t your only friend. If you want information on how effective your teaching or curriculum is, formal TEDS surveys are only one of the many sources available to you.  You could also utilise peer observation, or informal student feedback via small group discussions.  See many more suggestions here.

3. LET or LEU?

As a general rule, ​don’t order an LET and an LEU for​ the same cohort of students. Not only does this contribute to survey fatigue but there is also the risk that the student’s responses will become conflated.

A Note on Validity

To get the most use out of a survey you need to get a sufficient number of responses for the statistical results to be generalisable to the unit or class as a whole; any less than that and the data is not usable, and worse, is often skewed to the negative. To find out more, please visit the TEDS Tips webpage.

Ready to Order?

The student survey order site is now open for session 1 2015 teaching and unit survey orders. And don’t forget that TEDS needs 21 days notice to ensure that you get the survey when you need it.

If you are new to surveys at Macquarie please review the information at and before you place your order.

To place your order, please visit

Critical dates relating to student surveys can be found at

If you have any questions relating to student evaluation surveys please contact