Teaching Evaluations

Below is a collection of teaching evaluations by my students while at Georgia State University. Course enrollments for these sections varied from 25 (for Student Success Academy and Freshman Learning Communities) to 175 for super-sections. All students at GSU are required by the Georgia Board of Regents to pass Introduction to American Government prior to graduation regardless of major. Selected student comments are available below from anonymous student evaluations. Table 1 includes teaching evaluation summaries from sections of POLS 1101: Introduction to American Government from 2014 – 2018. Table 2 includes teaching evaluations for two sections of upper division Pre-Law courses taught in Summer 2017. Additionally, I am scheduled to teach a section of Civil Liberties & Rights in Fall of 2019.

Introduction to American Government (POLS 1101)

Table 1

Selected Comments from Students for 1101:

  1. “Professor Fairbanks is one of the best POLS professors, in my opinion. She is funny, engaging, and honest about the material she is teaching. I do not normally find myself interested in Government classes, but Professor Fairbanks made me really want to learn about the government. I was always interested!”
  2. “Professor Fairbanks is fair and efficient in her teachings. She is well educated in her field. She is very outspoken, but is entirely relatable. She knows lots of information on government. She also gave lots of feedback on assignments, and her class structure was easy to follow and understand.”
  3. “Professor Fairbanks is a very good professor. Her slides and her lectures were always very detailed, and she would answer questions with a high degree of knowledge. The exams and assignments were all graded fairly.”
  4. “Professor Fairbanks is very motivating and captivating in her lectures. She makes sure to include material that will relate to us students. She is also very welcoming of students to her office and to come up and speak after class. I will recommend Professor Fairbanks’s class to everyone!”
  5. “I loved Professor B and can’t wait to see her title change from Professor to Doctor. She really opened my mind into politics and the government.””
  6. “Connects very well with students. conducts class effectively. Also, she pulls in real world examples to help her students relate, connect, and understand the content.”
  7. “Awesome teacher, obviously cares about the subject matter and that always makes a class much more fun. I personally am not a political science person but still was intrigued and enjoyed this class immensely due to the candor of the professor.”
  8. “Professor Fairbanks is beyond awesome, at 21 years old the last time I took an American Government class was over 4 years ago. I really didn’t care for American Government, but after taking this course I know so much more about the Government and I am motivated to learn more.”
  9. “The Fairbanks is awesome! Best professor I’ve ever had! I love her!”
  10. “Great teacher, probably the best of my first semester. She is extremely knowledgeable and make class fun and interesting. I would take another class with her if I had the opportunity.”
  11. “professor. Very knowledgeable and made class exciting which sparked my motivation to learn. Would definitely take her class again!”
  12. “This class gave me new insight on politics and government in that I did not know much about before”
  13. “hated government class in high school, but I really like Mrs. Fairbanks;s class. She is very knowledgeable and passionate about the material. She also provides students with very thorough study guides that truly do help you prepare for exams.”
  14. “Professor Fairbanks was absolutely hilarious and always excited and engaged which made class so fun and very informational. I enjoyed government way more than I thought I would and I learned a ton while doing it.”
  15. “Fairbanks is a great teacher, she is confident in her work, and she also has background knowledge of what she is explain, which for me, I respect her more. She is also very funny, if you have her class you will just have to see what I mean.”
  16. “Extremely effective professor. Knows how to communicate to the class and captivate their attention span. Both very friendly and easy to talk to as well as disciplined enough to keep an orderly classroom. Great sense of humor as well.”
  17. “loved Professor Fairbanks. I never liked history before, but she tried to make it interesting with the funny videos she would play and her willingness to answer your questions. She was funny and liked to engage with her class. Her tests and quizzes were easy as long as you read the book and studied. I thoroughly enjoyed this class!”
  18. “Had a wonderful time. Never missed a class, because for the first time in my life I started to care about politics!”
  19. “Great professor! Her ways of teaching, the power points, and the discussions made a subject I consider boring, really exciting.”
  20. “For a graduate student, she did an AMAZING job. She is definitely in my top 5 for favorite professors. This isn’t even material that I care to learn and I have an A in the class. She is extremely strict assignment wise and also behavior wise. Any student that lands this teacher is going to have an amazing class!”
  21. “[She], was very passionate and knowledgeable about the subject. Got everyone out of their shells to debate and talk about various lectures. Highly recommended.”
  22. “Professor Fairbanks is honestly one of the best teachers I’ve had overall. She makes learning fun. Although some of the topics in class weren’t the most interesting, Professor Fairbanks always made it easier for us to understand and a joy to learn it.”
  23. “Best professor I’ve encountered on this journey to make it in life. Thank you so much, you were the bomb dot com!”
  24. “The best teacher I’ve come across so far!! [I] had a wonderful time. [I] never missed a class, because for the first time in my life I started to care about politics.”
  25. “Professor Fairbanks’s American Government class has been the most enjoyable class I have taken thus far at Georgia State. This is directly due to her unique teaching style, ability to communicate clearly, honesty, passion, understanding of the subject matter, enthusiasm, and genuine interest in her students’ success. Her unique teaching style captivates the attention of her students and creates an enjoyable and memorable learning environment. Professor Fairbanks uses numerous forms of media, relevant storytelling, and humor to transform somewhat dry information to interesting and valuable material. The examples she pairs with the information she is presenting make it easy to remember the information being presented. Additionally, Professor Fairbanks is extremely knowledgeable and passionate about what she is teaching. This was very apparent within the first 20 minutes of being in her class. She shows personal interest in her students and verbalizes a desire for them to succeed, offering many extra-credit opportunities and is willing to meet with students to discuss anything about regarding course. Professor Fairbanks seeks to be a better teacher and is always open to feedback. She also has complete control of her classroom due to the respect and genuine interest from her students. Prior this the beginning of this course, I heard she was an excellent professor, but she exceeded my expectations. I plan to seek out any additional classes she will be teaching in the future and highly recommend her to anyone who is looking for an entertaining, memorable classroom experience. I wish more professors taught like Professor Fairbanks. Although attendance is not mandatory, I am genuinely excited to attend my 8 am class.”
  26. “Professor Fairbanks was an amazing instructor. She continued to use different teaching methods by interacting with students and integrating guest speakers into her lectures. She knows a lot about the subject matter, and I enjoyed attending her class.”
  27. “I enjoyed her class and appreciated her neutrality when talking about politics. She is a great teacher. I liked her use of videos and current national issues to make normally boring topics relatable.”
  28. “She is a great teacher. She is confident in her work, and she has tons of background knowledge of what she is explaining. It made me respect her more. She is also very funny, if you have her class, you have to see what I mean.”
  29. Professor Fairbanks really cares for her students and makes sure everyone is learning in her course. Her lectures were great. She made all her materials available for those who needed extra help. Her slides and lectures were always very detailed. She would answer questions with a high degree on knowledge. The exams and assignments were graded fairly.”
  30. “Professor Fairbanks was absolutely fantastic. [She] made me really passionate about engaging in the political system. She pushed me to learn and work hard in her class. [She] was very organized and laid out her expectations clearly.”

Civil Liberties & Rights (POLS 4131) & American Constitutional Law (POLS 4130)

table 2

Selected Comments from Students for 4130 and 4131:

  1. “[She was] a phenomenal instructor. The lectures were always on point and understandable. Keep being awesome.”
  2. “Professor Fairbanks is one of the best professors I have ever had the pleasure of taking a class with. Her lectures were engaging, amusing, and educational. They really helped me get a solid foundation for my expectations of law school. I hope she continues to teach this course, because she is really great at it.”
  3. “Professor Fairbanks was excellent. She came to class everyday well prepared. She was extremely knowledgeable in the subject matter. She was easy to talk to and made herself available to us. I felt that she truly wanted us to succeed. I thoroughly enjoyed the class. She made talking about a pretty dull subject matter enjoyable.”
  4. “Professor Fairbanks is, by far, one of the best and most astute instructors I’ve had at Georgia State University. Throughout the semester, Professor Fairbanks held office hours for students at convenient times, provided ample time to prepare and study for exams, showed her willingness to help students achieve whatever grade he/she wanted, and showed her professionalism by being prepared for every single lecture. I would not hesitate to take another course instructed by her.”
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