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Authors Institution
Bruno Moelgaard Geertsen
Christian Balslev van Randwijk
University of Southern Denmark
7AA eLearning: Games, resources and platforms
Using Dashboards as platforms for student evaluations
Take-home Messages

Effective decision-making is based on having the right information available and easily accessible.

Dashboard-type software, such as QlikView, provides a centralized knowledge base for evaluations of teaching, allowing for a smooth and continuous operationalization of information gained from student evaluations.

When building dashboards, it’s important to follow simple but effective design methods, emphasizing important data. This ensures easy access to key metrics for otherwise busy users.


Summary of Work

At the Faculty of Health at UoSD, we are in the process of implementing QlikView, a dashboard type software, as a digital platform for gathering all student evaluations of teaching and learning activities at the faculty.

In every course evaluation since September 2012, the students have been asked to answer the same five questions (rated quantitatively) together with the students' qualitative comments on each course.  Data are gathered using the online questionnaire system, SurveyXact, and the results are then uploaded to a dashboard in QlikView.

Summary of Results

In its implementation at the Faculty of Health at UoSD, QlikView is set up to show both the quantitative (student satisfaction) and qualitative (comments) knowledge in the dashboard.

The dashboard follows well-known academic design principles, such as data-ink ratio (extreme graphical focus on the data - Stephen Few: Show Me the Numbers) and positioning of data on the dashboard (top right corner is prime real estate - Stephen Few: Information Dashboard Design). But it’s also build from years of experience with in-house management information as well as ongoing communication with dashboard end-users (teachers, educational leaders etc.).  

 Key features of the dashboard includes:

  • Multiple dashboard sheets with different functions and levels of detail

  • Multiple selection boxes on each sheet, where the user selects programme, course and term

  • Consistent sheet design concerning color theme, types of charts, placement and presentation of key metrics etc.

  • Multiple comparisons for each key metric, for example vs. development over time and comparison to other programmes/courses.



Student evaluations play an important role in quality assurance and quality improvement of teaching and learning activities, and in aligning these with overall educational policies, at the University of Southern Denmark (UoSD).


Making knowledge gained from student evaluations more accessible is an important step in paving the way for a more streamlined operationalization of both summative and formative knowledge. This is true for both quality assurance and quality improvement of teaching and learning activities.

For both individual teachers looking for constructive feedback on their recent teaching activities, and managers and administrators assessing quality and trends in teaching at the faculty over time, a dashboard-type solution, such as QlikView, is an efficient and transparent platform.

When building a dashboard it’s important to follow simple, but effective design methods to emphasize important data. Furthermore it’s good practice to take any constructive feedback from dashboard end-users into account for future dashboard development.  



  • Stephen Few - Information Dashboard Design: Displaying data for at-a-glance monitoring, Second Edition

  • Stephen Few - Show Me the Numbers: Designing Tables and Graphs to Enlighten, Second Edition



Designed & Managed by Innovative Technology®
Take-home Messages
Summary of Work



The five quantitative questions are as follows:

  • There was a clear connection between the goal of the course and the content and teaching

  • I have been stimulated to do independent studies and active participation by the Teaching Activities (Lectures, Cases, group discussions etc.)

  • I have received sufficient constructive and specific feedback

  • I have received knowledge and skills which are useful in my Education and my future Profession

  • Overall I'm satisfied with the Teaching


The questions are answered using a 5-level Likert Scale, where 1=Disagree, 2=Partly disagree, 3=Neither, 4=Partly agree and 5=Agree.


Furthermore the students are free to suggest course improvements as open text.



 - QlikView is a business platform that can turn huge amount of data into easily accessible knowledge presented as “dashboards” (reports). Dashboards are dynamic, enabling end-users to select specific dimensions/data groups for further analysis. Content, design and layout is exclusively controlled by the dashboard developer and not limited by software shortcomings.    


- SurveyXact is the most widespread system in Scandinavia on the market for undertaking and analyzing all forms of questionnaire-based surveys. The system is user-friendly and a flexible tool for many types of data-gathering and is used by most educational institutions in Denmark.


Summary of Results



The complete dashboard consists of 7 sheets besides the front page. Each sheet aims at different users in the organization or presents different types of data:

  • Programme/Education overview: aimed at Faculty management where they can get a complete overview on all programmes presented as the aggregated satisfaction for each of the five questions. Programmes are ranked against each other for easier comparison.

  • Course overview: aimed at programme management and on individual teachers. On this page they get a complete overview of all courses on a specific programme. Courses within the programme are ranked against each other for easier comparison.

  • Course comments: student comments on the selected course are presented here.

  • Compare courses: allows the user to select two different courses and compare key metrics for each of the five different question.

  • Response rate analysis: a stand-alone page with both key metrics as well as detailed information on response rate for each programme and course. The page consist of both specific tables and charts that show development over time.

  • Export data: a series of detailed data tables that can exported to Excel for further analysis.

  • Help: a 7-page help section with detailed information on navigation, general pagelayout, types of charts and how to read them, data export and contact information.     




Lots of specific features where implemented to further improve understanding and presentation af data. For example:


 - Consistent use of wellknown charttypes (bar- and line charts) for easy trend analysis.


 - Consistent colour theme - dark blue is user selection, and light blue or light grey is a comparison colour (other courses/programmes):


 - Extensive use of detailed explanairy text as mouse-overs (hover box) on both key metrics and many headlines:




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