Self-Evaluation in Teaching: Definition & Examples

Instructor: Kerry Gray

Kerry has been a teacher and an administrator for more than twenty years. She has a Master of Education degree.

In this lesson, we will examine some methods that teachers can use to self-evaluate their professional practice so that professional development opportunities can be targeted to meet their needs.

Reflective Practices

Why do you evaluate your students' performance? Student assessment is for the purpose of identifying the student's strengths and weaknesses so that instruction can be targeted and the student will grow. Teachers are evaluated for the same reasons. Whether an evaluation comes from an administrator, a peer, or the teacher's own reflection, growth in the profession comes from identifying strengths and weaknesses and targeting professional development to meet the needs of the teacher. Let's examine some methods for teachers to use to evaluate their own professional practices.

Reflective Journals

One way that teachers can assess their own effectiveness is by keeping a reflective journal. Reflective journals are a written account of a lesson that is used to articulate a teacher's thoughts about lesson delivery, student achievement, classroom management, content, or ideas for next steps. While many teachers will choose a less formal approach to journaling, the steps to successful journaling are:

  • Write down what happened.
  • Write down any thoughts, feelings, or reactions associated with the lesson or event.
  • Examine what happened.
  • Draw conclusions.
  • Create an action plan.

Reflective journaling provides the opportunity to apply metacognitive skills to teaching practices for improved performance.


There are a variety of self-assessment scales that are available from internet sites and professional publications. Some districts have created their own self-assessment scales that are used as part of the teacher evaluation process. Teachers can also create their own self-assessment based on their own professional goals. Self-assessment scales are rubrics and checklists that measure a teacher's performance against a standard of proficiency. Self-assessments may be used to evaluate classroom management, parent involvement, classroom culture, teacher collaboration, student collaboration, lesson plans, grading practices, or any other area that a teacher may want to review. Sometimes it is difficult to remain objective when doing a self-assessment, but combining self-assessment results with peer-assessments may provide a clearer picture.

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