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Fall 2023 Course Evaluations Optional for Personnel Actions



To:   Academic Senate Office, Deans, Department Chairs, Faculty, Vice Chancellors and Vice Provosts


Dear Colleagues:

The incidents that occurred this past fall in the Middle East produced a range of deeply felt reactions from UCLA students, staff and faculty. A significant number of faculty members have since expressed concerns that course evaluations from this period could be biased in cases where students and instructors held or were perceived to hold differing opinions on these issues.

In consideration of these concerns, and after consultation with the Council on Academic Personnel and the Academic Senate Executive Board, I am writing to inform faculty that Fall 2023 teaching evaluations will be optional for inclusion in academic personnel actions. This decision was made to support the joint goals of the Senate and administration as well as our commitment to the notion that faculty advancement at UCLA must occur without bias through objective peer review of research and creative scholarship, teaching and service.

Similar to how course evaluations were handled at the beginning of the pandemic in 2020, it will be up to the individual faculty member to determine whether or not they wish to have their student teaching evaluations from Fall 2023 included in their future personnel actions. Reviewers are instructed not to penalize any faculty member for omitting evaluations from this quarter or semester. I would like to reaffirm the themes shared in the December 8 BruinPost on maintaining a bias-free academic review process.

While some teaching evaluations may be negatively impacted by differing opinions on the current conflict, our office is confident that the great majority of faculty will still receive fair evaluations and will include them. We also continue to encourage all faculty to discuss their teaching experiences in their self-statements to provide additional context to reviewing bodies.

This change currently only covers evaluations from Fall 2023. A decision will be made about the winter and spring quarters and semester in the coming months.


Michael S. Levine
Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs & Personnel