SFU Records Retention Schedule and Disposal Authority (RRSDA)
Instructor / Course Evaluations: Faculty

Description | PIB | Authorities | Retentional rational | Rentention and filing guidelines | Status

RRSDA number


Record series

Instructor / Course Evaluations: Faculty

Office of Primary Responsibility (OPR)

All University Departments (General Records Series)

Retention periods

Records Active retention (in office) Semi-active (records centre) Total retention Final disposition
All departments holding these records: Under review Under review Under review Under review

CY = Current calendar year; CFY = Current fiscal year; CS = Current semester; S/O = Superseded or obsolete; OPR = Office of Primary Responsibility; Non-OPR = All other departments.

Description, purpose and use of records

Forms completed anonymously by students to assess courses and the performance of faculty instructors. Evaluation forms are used by the departments and faculties when reviewing faculty members for contract renewal, tenure, promotion and salary review.

Apply this schedule to the original machine-scored bubble sheet forms only if summary documents are not compiled. If complete and accurate summary documents are compiled, the forms can be treated as transitory records and destroyed immediately. See the Retention and Filing Guidelines section below for more details.

Note that this schedule does not apply to student evaluation forms completed assessing Teaching Support Staff Union (TSSU) employees – teaching assistants, sessional instructors, and distance education tutors, markers and (if non-faculty) supervisors; these have different retention requirements and are scheduled separately under RRSDA 1999-006.

All departments must include a collection notice on either the evaluation form or as part of the evaluation procedure, informing students that original forms and/or any summaries will be made accessible to the person being evaluated following final approval of grades (as per the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act).

Personal Information Bank (PIB)

This series is a Personal Information Bank; click here for PIB description.


These records are created, used, retained and managed in accordance with the following authorities:

Retention rationale

The total retention period is based on the cycle of review for contract renewal, tenure, promotion and salary review. Academic faculty members will have been reviewed at least once in every 5 years; after 5 years, the value of evaluations declines for an accurate and reliable assessment of current teaching performance.

Retention and filing guidelines

Do not file evaluation forms with the instructor’s personnel file or with the general course file. These different record types have different retention requirements which are easier to apply if they are kept as separate blocks of files. See RRSDAs 1996-004 for Academic Personnel Files (Continuing Employees), 1994-001 for Academic Personnel Files (Non-Continuing Employees), and 1999-002 for Course Files.

File evaulation forms on evaluation files. Organize files by semester and within these groupings by course / section number, then by instructor’s surname.

It may be departmental practice to prepare a summary document from the forms. A summary document makes the machine-scored bubble sheet forms transitory. Therefore, the evaluation forms can be destroyed upon the compilation of a summary document. Apply the total retention periods outlined in this RRSDA to summary documents.

Note that machine-generated summaries fail to capture written comments on the evaluation forms. Compile a summary of the written comments if: 1) the original evaluation forms are to be destroyed; and 2) the comments are deemed useful for future faculty assessments.

Do not apply this schedule in the event that evaluation forms due for destruction are being used as evidence in a formal dispute involving the University and which is still on-going (e.g. grievance, arbitration, Human Rights Commission, legal proceedings): retain evaluations until final decision / resolution is concluded, plus one additional year, then destroy.

Departments may wish to retain the records in-office for the full retention period (i.e. 5 years) rather than sending them to the University Records Centre (URC) for semi-active storage. In this case the department will be responsible for destruction. Evaluation forms contain personal information and must be destroyed by confidential shredding; contact Facilities Management to make arrangements.


Approved by the University Archivist: 12 Oct 2000

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