This page sponsors the development of an online tool to allow students who are interested in taking an online course to better determine whether they will be successful. It asks for the student to answer questions about their technology skills as well as their study habits and learning preferences. At this point, the questions have been derived from roughly 20 other similar assessments found online from various institutions. The survey may be viewed online at https://esurvey.tlt.psu.edu/Survey.aspx?s=246aa3a5c4b64bb386543eab834f8e75
The common questions themes were:
- Learning Preference (Aural, Verbal/Text, Visual, Tactile Kinesthetic)
- Cognitive Style
- Motivation (job? money? personal knowledge?)
- Technical Abilities and equipment (hardware, software, internet)
- Study Habits (time management and organizational skills)
- Literacy Competencies
- Social Interactions
- Personal Information
- American Disability Act
For this current set of questions, the categories/themes are:
- Learning preferences
- Study habits
- Technology skills
- Computer equipment capability
The questions are scored and feedback given at the completion. Right now, the feedback is not robust, but at this stage, I was simply trying to get the survey software to score the survey responses and give a total score. That part is working, so now I want to beef up the feedback.
Welcome to the world of online and blended learning. Before you enroll in an online course, take some time to think about yourself as a learner and see whether your characteristics would help you be a good online learner.
Please indicate your level of agreement with these statements.
- I am good at setting goals and deadlines for myself.
- I have a really good reason for taking an online course.
- I finish the projects I start.
- I do not quit just because things get difficult.
- I can keep myself on track and on time.
- I learn pretty easily.
- I can learn from things I hear, like lectures or audio recordings or podcasts.
- I have to read something to learn it best.
- I have developed a good way to solve problems I run into.
- I learn best by figuring things out for myself.
- I like to learn in a group, but I can learn on my own, too.
- I am willing to email or have discussions with people I might never see.
- I usually work in a place where I can read and work on assignments without distractions
- I can ignore distractions around me when I study.
- I am willing to spend 10-20 hours each week on this course.
- I keep a record of what my assignments are and when they are due.
- I plan my work in advance so that I can turn in my assignments on time.
- People around me will help me study and not try to distract me.
- I am willing to use email and other online tools to ask my classmates and instructors questions.
- I am pretty good at using the computer.
- I am comfortable surfing the Internet.
- I am comfortable with things like doing searches, setting bookmarks, and downloading files.
- I am comfortable with things like installing software and changing configuration settings on my computer.
- I know someone who can help me if I have computer problems.
Computer equipment capabilities
- My computer runs reliably on Windows NT/ Vista or on Mac OS 10.4 or higher.
- I have a printer.
- I am connected to the Internet with a fairly fast, reliable Internet connection such as DSL or cable modem.
- I have virus protection software running on my computer.
- I have headphones or speakers and a microphone to use if a class has a videoconference.
- My browser will play several common multimedia (video and audio) formats.
The survey tool scores a 2 for every Strongly agree, 1 for every Agree, and 0 for a Disagree, then posts the total score and a recommnedation feedback statement. I am writing the IRB application to establish reliability before implementation.