The Observation Form

The observation form (observation-script.html) page is where all ratings and supporting information for teacher observations or evaluations will be entered. This form offers a flexible scripting area that enables observers to easily enter observed information as well as many other tools that can support the workflow of any observation/evaluation event. The Staff Expectations section is always a customized form that must be designed and configured and can have various features available depending on district preference. Each observation form also offers and Discussion Board and a Supporting Documentation section.

Although it is not a common use case to move an observation to a prior or future year, the option does exist for unsigned observations to move them from one year to another.

The date should be entered as the day that best describes the observation event and will default to today's date when a new observation form is created.

The time fields may be available for some forms and not for others depending on whether the time is important or not. Some districts may even require that a time is entered before they are allowed to move the observation from to a completed status.

The observee field should show the staff members name who is the subject of this observation form. Only districts/users with permissions to update this field will be able to change this from the staff member that the form was started for.

The observer should be the primary observer that will be conducting the observation or evaluation. The logged in user that starts the observation will be the name that is in this field and only districts/users with permissions to update this field will be able to change this from the observer that has started the form.

The secondary observer is a field that will be available to districts that allow for collaborative observations. The indicated secondary observer will maintain the same access rights as the observer.

This checkbox is the MOST IMPORTANT control as Draft observations are meant to be private to the observer. Only the observer will be able to access their Draft observations and this is the default state for any observation forms that have started. Once the observation form is ready to be shared this checkbox should be unchecked to share the form with other observers, the observed staff members, and the district dataset. A notification may be sent to the observee via email (depending on district settings) and there will be a pop-up that displays to the end-user asking them to confirm the change into a Complete status.

General Controls & Buttons

The save button will always be available to save the current state of the observation form. To successfully save a form there must be an establish internet connection. If the application detects that there is not an active connection, you will be warned with the following errors.

Please note that changes can still be made while disconnected from the internet, but do not close the browsing tab until a the form saves successfully.

This button should be used upon completion of data entry as this will save the form with the most recent changes and close the current browsing tab.

Although this button loses some functionality when auto-save is enabled, The general function of this button would be to exit the current browsing tab without saving the most recent changes.

When auto-save is enabled, the date and time of the most recent save will be shown at the top of the form to let the observer know when the last time this form was successfully saved.

It is possible that the same observation form to be open and active on more than one device, but simultaneous changes cannot be made. If one device or browser detects that an observation was changed in a different browsing session, then it will display the following message and force a refresh such that all changes are registered and and all active browsing sessions reflect the most recent changes on any device.

For an observation or evaluation form to count towards any minimum requirements for any staff member it will need to be active. The application will not delete any observations and can only be removed permanently by contacting support. If the observation or evaluation is supposed to count towards any calculations or minimum requirements, the it should be active. Otherwise, toggle this to inactive and this is the same action as deleting the observation by clicking the trashcan. This tool may not be available depending on district user type permissions.

The OBSeRVE mailing system allows observers and observees to send a message to specified users within the eDoctrina messaging system with the option option to send a copy to the respective email addresses. The message will be pre-populated with a subject containing the observation ID# and a body that contains a link that will lead the user directly to the observation form. The recipients avaliable for selection will contain all active observers in the district, while the observee will be the only non-observer available.
NOTE: The "Send copy per mail" will be checked by default

It is possible to print any observation from within the observation form. When this button is clicked, this will generate a unique snapshot of the observation so it can be printed. The form usually initiates in web page format (HTML), but this can then be exported to a PDF or Excel file. These printed forms should not be used as official documents unless there is a signature applied to them, which can be done electronically through eDoctrina (if enabled). If you want to learn more about different report options, please see our OBSeRVE Report Dashboard help guide. Just note that some districts will set defaults to ensure all forms are printed consistently.

This option will allow the observer to pull up other observations for the chosen staff member in aligned columns so other ratings in other completed observations/evaluations can be viewed. Although this can serve as a great reference tool, some districts choose not to allow this while others will only allow it for final evaluations.

The Scripting Area

The scripting area is a flexible text entry tool with a number of features that are designed to make entry of supporting evidence easier.

This could be considered one of the more important controls of the observation form because it determines whether the information in the scripting area should be displayed to the teacher or not. When enabled, the observee will be able to see the contents within the scripting area, but this should be unchecked for observers that prefer this to not be shared as it could be simply drafted content. There does exist a setting where this feature can be set to be enabled or disabled by default.

Generally speaking, the scripting area is meant for easy text entry while conducting an observation so the entered text can be utilized for supporting information. But there are also some other tools are available to enhance the observer's experience, such as the built-in camera and the time stamp tool. Any content that is entered here, which includes text and images, can be linked to the supporting evidence in the observation form by simply highlighting the text and then telling the application which element to attach the content to. A button will appear next to any element that text is allowed to be linked. It is also possible to link by right-clicking the highlighted text or link to many elements in one action using the button that appears above the scripting area.

Quick Sentences

The ability to manage add a quick sentence will be available for users to quickly add common comments or statements to the scripting area. Please see our guide on Observe Quick Sentences

Staff Expectations

The Staff Expectations section is where the contents of the observation form will be located. This form is custom for each type of observation and will have a different look and feel for each district and even each observation form or type. Because of the high degree of customization, it is impossible to show how any one observation form will look. Each staff expectation can be a pull-down menu for rating selection, a checkbox, a text editor, and much more. It is best to review district documentation about this section and how an observation/evaluation should be filled out. Below you will find only details about the general tools that may or may not be available.

One of the more important components of conducting an observation is to provide a score or rating for each staff expectation. In this section, observers will select ratings from pull-down menus, select check boxes where evidence is applicable, enter supporting information to validate rating selection, attach supporting files or links, make comments to a discussion board, and a lot more. This section of the observation form varies significantly by district, but there are many features that are available across all rubrics in eDoctrina.

Rating Selection

If an observer sees a pull-down menu in the staff expectations section of the OBSeRVE Editor, it means that a rating can be selected for that staff expectation. Some of these selections serve a qualitative purpose while others are quantitative and will be included in the calculated values. The names and points tied to each of these selections will vary by district. Here are some examples.

Rating SelectionRating SelectionRating Selection

If descriptions exist for any of these ratings, it is possible to view those descriptions to make a more informed decision when selecting a rating. Next to each rating selection pull-down, there will be an Info button that, upon clicking, will display the descriptions of any ratings that have them.

Supporting Information

Each staff expectation is unique and may look different by district and with a specific observation rubric. eDoctrina offers many ways for observers to enter supporting information to accentuate and/or explain the rationale behind certain ratings inside a particular observation.

Some staff expectations could display the option to add attachments or links or even a mini-discussion board for notes.:

  • Notes: Adding notes will serve as a mini-discussion board within the specified expectation.
  • Notes: Attach various types of files to serve as supporting evidence within the specified expectation.
  • Notes: Add the URL of any website or document to serve as supporting information within the specified expectation.

Any information that is entered in these tools will be stored within this staff expectation solely. If it is desired to attach a file, link a website, or post a comment to the whole observation, please find the options at the bottom of the OBSeRVE Editor.

It is possible for all observers to key in extra supporting information for each staff expectation that has been set up to allow it. These fields can be utilized to enter text, upload images, or include any other information that is applicable.

Some staff expectations have been set up to only allow supporting information and will be displayed on the OBSeRVE Editor as shown below.

Scripting Area

While others will be coupled below the rating selection as shown here.

Supporting Info

Although these two fields have a different appearance in the OBSeRVE Editor, they will present themselves they same way when generating a printable document. For more information about printing, please refer to our OBSeRVE Report Dashboard help guide.

Discussion Board

The discussion board can be enabled for specific observation forms to be available for involved parties to post a comment and trigger an email notification. Each discussion board can be configured to be specific to any single observation or it can be used as a discussion board for the teacher (where all comments in any form for the observation rubric will be available in any other related form). There is the option to limit the discussion board to only be for observers as well. Screen_Shot_2020-06-05_at_9.55.20_AM.png

If enabled for the district, draft comments can be posted. Draft comments will be private to the person making the comment and will not print. These comments will show in the discussion board, but will be highlighted with a blue background to show a difference between the two different types of comments.


Supporting Documents

If enabled, the supporting documents section will allow the end-user to upload any local files from their computer as well as enter a website address to include any documentation and/or resources that should be used to support the observation/evaluation. Screen_Shot_2020-06-05_at_9.55.54_AM.png