CES Glossary

Important People


Important Terms


Important People

Course Evaluation Liaisons (CELs):  The primary staff members assigned to manage course evaluations for a department. Many departments have a primary liaison and at least one secondary liaison.

  • Primary Contact:  The CEL primarily responsible for a department’s course evaluation requests, administration, and final configuration.  This liaison is also, unless indicated otherwise, the primary authority on granting access to new staff members, and the individual whose name and contact information is provided to faculty members on any automated emails sent by the CES Team.
  • Secondary Contact:  A CEL who supports the Primary Liaison in their responsibilities.  Should a Primary Liaison leave their position without identifying a replacement, the most-senior Secondary Liaison shall be automatically elevated to Primary Liaison status.

Authorized Evaluation Reviewers (AERs): Individuals at the university who are authorized at the departmental, unit, college, school, or university level to review the results of course evaluations. 

Course Schedulers:  The primary staff members responsible for assigning courses, and their respective instructors, to specific rooms during available times.  These individuals often have the best understanding of an instructor’s wishes with regards to course groupings, cross-listings, and teaching assignments.

FaSET Contacts:  The staff members responsible for finalizing course information data provided by course schedulers and ensuring that it is communicated to state agencies as appropriate.  The FaSET system data is fed directly into Canvas as well as the course evaluation system.

P&T Contacts:  Responsible for compiling, formatting, and organizing course evaluation data into folders which are used to complete dossiers for faculty members being reviewed for promotion, tenure, teaching awards, and other annual reviews. </p> <p> <strong id=">Associate Deans/Assistant Deans:  Senior administrators within each academic school or college.  The administrators often held ultimately accountable for Promotion, Tenure, and Faculty Review will typically hold the title of Associate or Assistant Dean for Faculty Affairs.



AIS:  Academic Information Systems, Office of the Provost.

CES:  Course Evaluation System. Refers to the new software, Blue Explorance, used to conduct course evaluations and store results post-Fall 2022.

CEL:  Course Evaluation Liaison. The primary staff members assigned to manage course evaluations for a department.  Most departments have one Primary Contact and at least one secondary contact. Look up the CEL for your course's home department here.

CIS:  Course Instructor Survey, refers to the internal system used to conduct course evaluation surveys pre-Fall 2022. Sometimes called the “Legacy System.” The electronic administration of CIS is sometimes referred to as "eCIS" or "electronic Course Instructor Survey". Now used only to access results from surveys conducted pre-Fall 2022.

CSU:  College, School, and Unit.  The term often used to describe a single distinct academic organization at a modular level.  This term can be used to help distinguish academic units that do not follow the standard nomenclature (ex:  The Butler School of Music vs. The McCombs Business School).

DIG: Data Integrity Gateway. The database in Blue where course records are uploaded from FaSET, then audited by CELs. The DIG window is the period in time in which CELs can edit data before "publishing" a course. After a course is published in DIG, it is ready for the instructor to complete the (optional) Subject Management and Question Personalization tasks, and then for the survey to be generated.

EID:  Electronic Identification, a 3–8-character unique identifying code used by students, faculty, and staff members to access secure university systems.

FaSET:  The "Faculty and Student Electronic Tracking System."  The system used by Course Schedulers from which course evaluation data is populated.

FERPA:  The "Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act," which governs many of the data collection and sharing policies of the CES Team.

FO: Fill Out, a task assigned to students in Blue to complete a course evaluation survey. The FO (Fill Out) Window is the period of time that surveys are available to students, and can varies between courses.

IRRIS:  The office of “Institutional Research, Reporting and Information Systems,” within the Executive Vice President and Provost’s Office.

SIS:  Student Information Systems, Office of the Registrar.

SM: Subject Management, a task assigned to instructors in Blue where they can manage their course evaluations, including changing the dates the survey opens and closes. The subject management window is the period of time when the task is open, which often occurs at the same time as the Question Personalization (QP) task.

TORA:  Texas Open Records Act, also known as Texas Public Information Act.

P&T:  Promotion and Tenure, the shorthand often used for all faculty review aside from that conducted for the purposes of determining teaching awards.

QP: Question Personalization, a task assigned to instructors in Blue where they can select up to three additional pre-approved questions from a question bank to be added to their surveys. The question personalization window is the period of time when the task is open, which often occurs at the same time as the Subject Management (SM) task.


Important Terms

12th Class Day Enrollment:  The official enrollment count reported to the State of Texas for each class (sometimes called “Census Day”).  These values are sent to the course evaluation system from the Office of Institutional Research, Reporting and Information Systems (IRRIS).

Blue: Also "Blue Explorance" or "Bluera." The new software that UT uses to administer and store course evaluations. The university switched to this system in the Fall 2022 semester, so all results prior to Fall 2022 are stored on the homegrown CIS (Course Instructor Survey) system. 

Convenience Copies:  Any copies of old paper survey forms kept by faculty or departments. If you need access to paper copies of old surveys, please contact the home department of the course(s).

Core Questions: The common questions shared among all questionnaires, for all courses, at UT Austin.  Most are rated using the same Likert Scale options (Strongly Agree, Agree, Neutral, Agree, Strongly Agree). View all core questions here.

Course ID: Identifying code to distinguish a single course within an academic catalog from another.  Usually consisting of a 1–3-character prefix, followed by a 3 digit number, and in some cases, a suffix letter to further distinguish variations of a course from each other (i.e. HIS 321A or E 123).

Cross-Listing:  An umbrella term used commonly to refer to a single course with multiple Unique ID’s.  Sometimes called "Merged Courses." These are distinguished within the FaSET system using one of four (1 of 4) terms:

  • Inventory Same-As:  Two or more courses associated with one another within a course catalog.  Used often to provide students with options to take courses outside of their academic department without violating requirements for professional licensing and certification (ex:  Accounting students must take a certain number of courses with the ACC prefix to qualify for the CPA exam.  This type of cross-listing provides expanded opportunities for accounting students to take relevant coursework outside of the accounting department by designating these courses with an ACC prefix.)

  • Schedule Same-As:  Two or more courses associated with one another strictly within the FaSET and Classroom Manager 2.0 system.  These are often used to provide a “trial period” for courses expected to be associated as “Inventory Same-As” at some future date.

  • Room Share:  Two or more courses sharing the same room at the same time on the same days.  Used infrequently in a wide variety of circumstances.  (ex: A study abroad course in which undergrads and graduate students are enrolled in a single “course” visiting a foreign country over a Maymester.)

  • Multi-Section A single course, usually consisting of several hundred students, separated into multiple sections for the purposes of simplifying the management and administration of the course.  

College, School, or Unit (CSU) Questions: Questions selected by a College, School, or Unit (CSU) to appear on every evaluation for which that CSU is the primary unit of instruction. 

Dashboard: Or "Blue Dashboard." The homepage in Blue for students and instructors to view and complete their open tasks. 

Early/Late Survey:  A survey that is opened (made available) to students at a time that is either prior to the beginning of the official survey Fill Out Period, or after the end of the official survey Fill Out Period. Results for Early Surveys are not released earlier than those opened during the regular Fill Out Period.

Fill Out Cutoff Date: The date after which no evaluations may be administered due to grade sheet due dates at the University.

Grades Submission Period:  The period of time within which instructors of record may submit grades to the Office of the Registrar.

Green eReports Folder:  A folder connected to the mainframe provided to UT faculty and staff for the purposes of facilitating remote work with UT Direct systems.  For instructions on setting up your own folder, visit the Texas Service Now site.

High-Assurance EID:  Term used to distinguish EID’s assigned to faculty, staff, and officially enrolled students from those who have limited access to UT systems for specific circumstances (parents, students enrolled in certification courses, etc.)

Home Department:  When referring to faculty, this term is usually used to distinguish the department under which said faculty member will be subject to official faculty reviews.  When referring to a course, this term is usually used to identify the department responsible for scheduling, assigning faculty, and managing course evaluations. When finding the CEL for a course, look for the liaison in charge of the course's home department.

HR Partner/Executive:  Designations within the HR Spectrum.  These designations grant special privileges to faculty and staff members allowing them access to confidential Human Resources information.

Individual Instruction:  A designation for a course, usually used for courses in which an instructor provides one-on-one instruction, or courses with only one student enrolled in total.  These courses are commonly associated with practicums, internships, or independent research programs.

Instructor of Record:   The instructor assigned in the course scheduling system to teach a specific course section.

Late Modification Date: Requests to make changes to the evaluation open-and close-dates after the Policy Exception Request Deadline has passed.

Optional Questions: Questions voluntarily selected by instructors for inclusion in their course evaluations during the Question Personalization (QP) Window. These questions are under the instructor's purview, departments or administrators cannot dictate if instructors add questions, which optional questions instructors might add, or require instructors to share the results of optional questions. To be eligible to select optional questions, instructors must have official faculty or staff appointments at the university. View Optional Questions here.

Organized Course:  Term used to distinguish courses with standard meeting times/schedules, taught using a standardized curriculum, from the many non-standardized courses used to provide academic documentation (Individual Instruction, Internships, etc.) Includes lectures, labs, seminars, and clinical organized courses.

Provisional Results:  A set of results distributed to faculty before the results are officially certified, typically available 3-4 weeks after the final grading deadline. This grace period before the results are finalized (60-90 days, depending on the semester) is provided to allow faculty to review their comments before they are ever made available to department administrators. View more information on reviewing results here.

Supplemental Questions: Questions included as a supplemental to a course evaluation based on a specific instructional type (e.g., laboratory, practicum, studio, etc.).

TA Questionnaire:questionnaire used to evaluate teaching assistants.

Unique ID:  A 5-digit identification number assigned during Course Scheduling to distinguish courses and sections from each other.  Despite what might seem implied by their name, Unique ID’s are repeated from year-to-year, and must be combined with an instructor EID or Course ID to provide a truly unique identifier.