In response to the question "how should teaching be evaluated?" all the studies [assume needed citations] show that a peer review by a colleague is by far the best way to go. And this is so: properly conducted, a peer review offers the reviewer an unparalleled opportunity for self-aggrandizement, opportunistic political manoeuvering and payback with impunity for slights real or imagined, as well as innocent entertainment for any readers of your victim's file.
Here are a few simple rules for such a review:
1. Before the class observation, the instructor will send you the syllabus, handouts, website, bibliography and class schedule. Ignore all these; information about the content, structure, preparation, intent and assessment of the course is irrelevant to your review.
2. Arrive for your classroom observation late and noisily, pushing past students to sit in the middle of a row. You want to test how the instructor handles a little disruption.
3. Ostentatiously set up your laptop and make it clear you're looking things up throughout the class. Nudge the student beside you occasionally and point at your screen, rolling your eyes at the instructor and snickering just audibly.
4. As you take notes, remember to sneer. If the instructor is in a position to see your notepad, be sure to circle your observations in red and add multiple exclamation marks. Look gleeful.
5.Leave hastily afterwards without bothering to speak to your colleague or thank him for allowing you to attend the class. Common courtesy is for weaklings.
6. Remember that a peer review is not intended as a review of your colleague's teaching. That is only the cover story. It's really an opportunity to show how much better you would have taught the class. It's particularly important to show this if you aren't actually qualified to teach it yourself. You have a right to be bitter.
7. Assume that any decisions your colleague has made about texts, references, teaching techniques and evaluation practices were hasty, ill-considered, ill-informed, irresponsible and based on laziness and stupidity. After all, those decisions cannot have been founded on research, consultation with those who actually do know something about the subject, careful consideration, or your colleague's lengthy experience in teaching in this field. (Feel free to ignore the fact that your colleague isn't known for hastiness, lack of responsibility, laziness or stupidity. Maybe they weren't before, but that's all going to change once your letter is in their file.)
8. Fling as much mud as you can. Some of it is bound to stick. And wasn't that the point? They feel worse, so you must feel better. It's a zero-sum game, baby. If they can't stand the heat ...
9. Remember, the point of a peer review is not to be collegial, helpful, or even to give your colleague any honest advice they could actually use to improve the course. The point of a peer review is to wave your tiny, shrivelled, flaccid, pathetic organ about. So -
10. Wave it!