Any college student can tell you about the end of class surveys given at the end of the given semester. The ones that ask you to rate your professor on an arbitrary scale and all pretty much say the same thing. The same surveys are given to non-traditional college students such as those who attend online. They also promise anonymity, so why aren't they published after the fact for all to see?
It's pretty clear to anyone that attended college that there are always going to be some great professors, a handful of good professors and then the really, really bad professors. As far as the bad go, some you tolerate to get the credit hours while others you tolerate long enough to get out of the class. The especially bad ones you transfer away from as quickly as possible. So, come that time of year when surveys are handed out, why aren't those professors being called out?
To me at least, it seems that the surveys currently serve no purpose other than submitting yet another assignment to the school. They're submitted and the same professors continue to teach even though it has been made clear that they don't provide a solid learning environment. Things like lack of communication should be taken very seriously, especially in the case of online students whose only form of communication with the professor is by phone or email.
Also, lack of knowledge of the material that they are teaching is also an issue. You cannot teach if you don't know the material at all. If the school is actually looking at these surveys, then why are these same professors allowed to stay in their positions and continue to make college students potentially suffer?
I personally think that the survey results should be shared online in a forum for everyone to see. Since the survey takers are kept anonymous, the only person potentially in the firing line is the professor which helps to keep them accountable. Also, in publishing the results, professors with "god complexes" won't be able to pull the same things that they had previously.
Sites like, "RateMyProfessors.com" showcase what students really think about their professors so other students can avoid the bad professors. Allowing survey results to be public would effectively accomplish the same purpose. Students would be able to avoid the bad professors of any given college by going through the survey results of any given professor.
Overall, it seems pretty silly to take a survey that doesn't really seem to be accomplishing anything. By making the results public, it forces professors to be held accountable, it diminishes god complexes and it helps students make effective choices in their class professors.