Do you mean give a list of words to choose from, or free choice?
You are spot on with your post! I wish I had started with a different teacher too, but there was only one in town. I also wouldn't have know what to look for as a beginner. Talking to people who have had experience with a teacher and trying them yourself are the only ways to find out if they are a good fit.The only thing I know to do at this point is to read about instructors, talk to people who have studied with so and so and at some point possibly try them. At least at this point in my life I can evaluate them better. I do regret feeling like I would have been much further along if I would have started with a quality teacher.
I agree entirely! Rating systems are a minefield and at some point are always open to abuse and subjectivity.................
Instead of a rating system, I think it would be so incredibly contructive to have a 'stickied' forum topic with a compiled list from members of advice and questions for potential students to ask instructors. This would put responsibility in the student's court for doing their research as well as the instructors for providing the student with realistic information about their classes.
Amen.... a survey might work. Questions could be simple and direct... did teacher show up on time, how many other students... how long did class last, were there handouts... what kind of music was used, what style is taught. what is the studio like... this would help me select a teacher.
Here's the link to that article I mentioned back in early December.Amen.
Some rating/ranking formats could be terribly abused, as has been stated, but a basic questionnaire requiring brief answers might work. Said questionnaire might in itself teach us newbies some basic things to look for in an instructor, in a class format.