As an educator, student success should be at the forefront of your institution. Yet, there are many factors that make up that success throughout the school year. Often, multiple non-cognitive attributes are in play. But knowing which students need help first or how to support your students before a problem arises can be challenging at times.
However, this challenge can be combated by measuring 8 simple factors on each student in order to provide them with information and resources they need to succeed. These factors include:
- Life Factors
- Individual Attributes
- Learning Styles
- Technical Competency
- Technical Knowledge
- On-Screen Reading Rate and Recall
- Typing Speed and Accuracy
- LMS Competency
Let's break down each one of these factors and why institutions need to measure their students based on these items.
The 8 Factors Every Student Should Be Measured On:
1. Life Factors
When measuring a student's life factors, faculty members can get a glimpse into the student's:
- Availability of time to study
- Availability of a dedicated place to study (Click here to download our free "How to find and create a place to study and take exams" resource!)
- Reasons for continuing their education
- Support resources from family, friends, and employers
- Perceptions of academic skills
Most students have a strong desire to learn. However, certain situations in life may make it harder for them to continue to pursue their education.
When measuring a student's life factors, both the faculty and the student are able to acknowledge elements in their life that may impact their ability to learn. Knowing this, students may be able to modify circumstances that impact some of these life skills. With this, faculty members are also able to encourage them to take appropriate actions to help themselves succeed.
2. Individual Attributes
Knowing a student's individual attributes can provide faculty and students with information about their traits, habits, and attitudes that impact their readiness to learn. Specifically, measuring the following items are key to knowing which students may need more motivation than others:
- Time management
- Willingness to ask for help
- Academic attributes
- Locus of control
Once you know how a student responds to these attributes, an appropriate plan can be put into place by both the faculty and the student to keep them on track.
3. Learning Styles
Every student learns differently. The main types of learning styles include visual, verbal, social, solitary, physical, aural, and logical learners. Measuring and assessing your students in this area will allow you to know which type of learning style(s) work best for them. This is an important part of retaining students, providing an enjoyable learning environment, and helping them best succeed throughout the school year.
4. Technical Competency
Learning, especially if done online, is highly dependable on a student's technical competency. Being able to properly format an email, follow a link on a web page, open and save a file, and use a search engine are just a few examples of where this skill comes into play.
Measuring a student on these basic computer and internet tasks will allow both faculty members and students to know if learning in a highly technological environment is the right fit for them at the time. It will also shine a light on what the student can work on to better improve their technical competency.
5. Technical Knowledge
Technical Knowledge is another factor on which every student should be measured. Measuring this allows the administration to know the degree to which the participant possesses knowledge of items related to:
- Their familiarity with technology usage
- Their current understanding of certain technology vocabulary
- Their availability to a personal computer and high-speed internet
Knowing these things about your students will allow your institution to make recommendations based on goodness-of-fit classes, while also understanding if a large part of your student body needs access to necessary technology.
6. On-Screen Reading Rate and Recall
As more homework and exams make the shift towards being online, a students' ability to effectivity preform on-screen reading and recall is a valuable skill to have. This includes being able to read at a steady speed while comprehending things like factual information, inferential information, and the main idea of the passage.
Measuring this can help institutions understand what reading level their students are at and how they can best assist certain students with more reading time or recall techniques if needed.
7. Typing Speed and Accuracy
When it comes to writing essays, short answers, or papers, a certain level of typing speed and accuracy should be maintained. Understanding how well your students are equipped to successfully type on a computer will help your institution offer recommendations to the students for improvement.
8. LMS (Learning Management System) Competency
Almost every course, whether online or in-person, will require some sort of knowledge/usage of a LMS software. Being able to understand and navigate through the school's LMS will be key to partaking in any class. If an institution notices that LMS knowledge is lacking after measuring students on their competency, the school can then decide if extra training is necessary for the student.
How to Measure These 8 Factors:
Now that we've gone through the 8 factors that every student should be measured on, you may be wondering, "How can my institution best measure our students when it comes to these factors?" Luckily, there's an easy way that each one of these items can be measured. It's called SmarterMeasure.
SmarterMeasure is an online assessment of a learner’s level of readiness for studying in an online or technology-enriched environment. The assessment quantifies the learner’s “goodness of fit” for learning in multiple modalities including measuring 8 factors reviewed above.
Once the assessment is taken by the students, educators are provided with information to help them make informed decisions on how to best serve their students and set them up for achievement. For example, if a student has indicated to be deficient in a certain area(s), the school is then able to provide appropriate remediation and/or support to increase their students' success. With this, SmarterMeasure can serve as a retention tool by helping students succeed as they learn in the context of online or technology-rich courses.
How can SmarterMeasure help increase student success?
Let’s take a look at measuring some of these key factors with SmarterMeasure. Below are two examples of how SmarterMeasure has helped increase student success rates at our client’s institutions.
1. Middlesex Community College:
Middlesex Community College was experiencing high failure/dropout rates in their online courses. For the two years before using SmarterMeasure, their dropout rate in online courses was 33%. After administered SmarterMeasure to their students, they followed up with them about their opportunities for improvement. In the first year, their dropout rate was reduced by 5% and the second year by 7%.
2. Ashford University:
For Ashford University, their retention rate prediction when using student demographics only was around 81.70%. However, after implementing SmarterMeasure, they were able to increase their student retention rate prediction by 3.8%. Through this, they acted on the data given by their students in order to ensure students received the help they needed before it was too late.
Start measuring these 8 factors today and increase your student success rate!
Awareness fosters action – SmarterMeasure is designed to allow learners to go into the learning experience with their eyes wide open regarding their strengths and opportunities for improvement. That awareness, coupled with resources that the school provides as well as personal strategies, can truly help students have a more satisfying learning experience. And satisfaction prompts retention. Students are much more likely to persist if they are satisfied with their learning experience.
Your students’ success is important. And knowing exactly how you can best help them succeed will make all the difference. Start increasing your students’ success today by scheduling a free demo to learn how these 8 SmarterMeasure factors can help.