Friday, 14 December 2007

Evaluating learning

Evaluation has got a lot tougher. It used to be if you were evaluating learning, you reached for Kirkpatrick – his four levels of evaluation have been the gold standard for as long as most of us can remember.

But lately this has been questioned. Don Morrison, in his 2003 book E-learning Strategies, suggested ROI (Return on Investment) was a fifth level. Don and I will have to disagree on that one – I reckon ROI is just a measurement approach for the fourth level.

Meanwhile Valerie Anderson is questioning ROI, and suggesting we should instead consider ROE (Return on Expectations).

Then along comes Kaliym Islam with his book on Measuring Training the Six Sigma Way – the E-learning Guru website suggests this may be a valid alternative to the whole Kirkpatrick approach.

Have I mentioned Kevin Kruse’s E-learning Guru site before? For me, it’s the best American online reference source for e-learning – often contrarian, always thought-provoking (hope you appreciate the recommendation, Kevin!)

Overall, this has to be a good thing. If learning is to be taken more seriously, we need to get more serious about its impact. This debate helps.

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