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Are you being asked to determine an enterprise-wide e-learning strategy? Ask us for a free copy of our Building a Strategic Plan for E-Learning.

Learner Assessment Center
Measuring Learning Ability and Readiness to Learn

What does it take to succeed as an online learner? What does it take to get an online degree? To be successful, online students must have basic knowledge about their ability, commitment and readiness to learn. Self-assessment offers learners opportunities for increased involvement, greater acceptance of the learning process, and alignment with expectations. Self-assessment helps learners identify strengths and weaknesses, engage in progress, and define areas and measures for improvement. It fosters communication and collaboration with stakeholders and encourages a solution-focused direction and growth. Here are a few ways to consider self-assessment.

Self-Assessment 1

The Learning Orientation Questionnaire (LOQ) measures how adults generally approach learning and performance. The LOQ is a 25-item online survey that considers the dominant psychological factors that influence learning. Based on the recent advances in the neurosciences, results describe how individuals learn differently and why. You can use the results to guide the design of learning environments and learning solutions--with the goal not only to support achievement of instructional or performance objectives, but also to help learners improve learning ability over time. You can also use the results to identify issues (e.g., cognitive and decision-making ability, usability, stress, and change) that create gaps between potential learning and performance proficiency and actual learning and performance proficiency.

Self-Assessment 2

Other critical factors that contribute to success are shown below. Consider each factor and ask yourself to rate each on a scale between 1 (low) and 7 (high).

  • intention and commitment to completing a degree and the institution
  • previous college experience and expectations of academic life
  • previous college credit course within two years prior to enrolment in an external degree program
  • confidence in time management and finding enough time to study (15-20 hours per week)
  • confidence in balancing home responsibilities and family involvement with studies
  • confidence in balancing job responsibilities and management involvement with studies
  • confidence in balancing financial responsibilities with studies
  • confidence in independent study (e.g., having fewer opportunities to meet face-to-face with instructors and discussion
  • confidence to deal with the isolation and lack of peer affiliation
  • confidence in taking sufficient responsibility for their own studies
  • confidence in knowing the value of their degree
  • previous computer training experience
  • desire to excel or compete against themselves
  • wellness

Strategies for Successful Online Learning

Among the resources available for learners is an array of innovative improvement strategies available at: These strategies are "learning improvement models.

Learn from Other Online Learning Orientation Programs

Foothill College's Online Learning Orientation Program
Midlands Technical College
Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College
Orientation to College Learning
Online Michigan Virtual High School

Self-assessment can provide substantial benefits to learners by increasing the learner's understanding and engagement in the learning process.


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743 W. Bougainvillea, Oro Valley, AZ 85737
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Last updated: March 2010
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