Paper-based evaluation systems require considerable administrative effort for data collection, analysis, archiving and dissemination of results to faculty in a timely manner. Replacement of a paper-based faculty evaluation system with a web-based evaluation system resulted in a dramatic increase in return rates. This study was carried out to determine the reason for the increase in return rates and the educational impact of faculty being able to access feedback data on their teaching performance electronically. Residents returned more web-based evaluations because of the convenience of the system and prompting by electronic reminders. Most faculty agreed that their electronic feedback data were useful to identify their teaching strengths and areas for improvement. Most faculty also perceived that they made minor to moderate changes in their teaching practices based on their feedback data. The most common changes were to increase bedside teaching and physical diagnosis, perform quicker rounds, provide more autonomy, deliver feedback and encourage self-directed learning. It is concluded that an electronic evaluation system provides a convenient method to increase resident completion rates and hence the volume of data on faculty performance. A web-accessed electronic evaluation system is also a convenient method of providing feedback to faculty and may have a positive impact on teaching practices. Such changes in teaching performance can be monitored over time by faculty, program directors and accrediting bodies.
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