Reflection / Assessment
In planning the guest speaker experience, instructors should consider the learning outcomes that this experience will deliver. Incorporating a reflective response to this experience will deepen student understanding, and contribute to a meaningful experience. Therefore, this experience should be carefully incorporated in the context of the course with assigned readings before the event, an introduction to the speaker to prepare students on the expectations and a reflective engagement that could be used as one of the assignments for the course. Mullins (n.d.) wonders, “if the speaker is truly there to enhance quality of the students’ learning experience, then why should this information be excluded from the assessment of students?”. This reflective response can be successfully incorporated in the course outline with explicit and measurable evaluation criteria. A rubric can be used to help students with the assignment, but can also be shared with the guest speaker to make sure that she/he addresses the objectives.
In evaluating the guest speaker experience, instructors should consider questions such as:
- How informative was the presentation?
- How relevant to the topic of discussion was the presentation?
- Was the guest speaker able to relate to students? And, if yes, in what ways?
- Were the students interested in what was presented? How was their interest manifested?
- How involved were the students in the questions period?
- How willing and comfortable was the guest speaker in answering students’ questions and concerns?
- How the guest speaker experience enhanced students’ learning on the topic?