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The Most Beneficial Learning Metrics for eLearning and Why You Should Track Them

April 9, 2019 | 3 Min Read

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Metrics has been a buzzword in education circles for some time, and for good reason. The learning metrics that educators track can have a huge impact on how effective their learning experiences are, and thus hold an immense amount of power.

The same is no less true of metrics in eLearning, and in this article, we'll go over some beneficial metrics that you should look into measuring in your eLearning experiences.

If you’re looking for a deeper dive into the benefits of using learning metrics to improve your eLearning programs, watch our free on-demand webinar Using Analytics to Deliver Engaging Courses!

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What Type of Learning Metrics Should You Measure?


Before giving you some examples of beneficial eLearning metrics you can measure, it's also important to go over what types of metrics you shouldn't bother with. Generally, metrics that are designated as "vanity metrics" exist only for superficial reasons, and thus are not worth measuring.

"Performance metrics," often correlated with key performance indicators (KPIs), on the other hand, are useful metric indicators of learner performance and potential, and thus are fully worth examining. To understand the difference between the two, consider this example:

  • Number of course completions is a vanity metric. Remember, just because a certain percentage of students complete a course doesn't indicate how effective that course actually is, or whether or not the students of that course will actually retain any useful information.
  • Time spent answering questions, on the other hand, is a useful performance metric. For example, if 67 percent of students spend a disproportionate amount of time on a question, and 58 percent get that question wrong, that's an indicator that the question should be rephrased or removed.

Useful eLearning Metrics to Measure

  • Survey responses. Measuring various survey metrics - reactions, feedback and other forms of evaluation learners will leave on the course or instructor evaluations - can greatly assist you in tailoring your eLearning experiences towards the needs of your target learning groups.

  • Time spent. While we mentioned how measuring the time spent per question can be useful, measuring time spent on courses, quizzes, exams and training exercises can also be crucial for designing effective performance tests for learners.

  • Learner interactions. Having a forum - either hosted on your corporate training portal or via LMS- is a must for encouraging peer-to-peer engagement among learners. By measuring the amount of activity on these forums, as well as what assignments seem to encourage more peer interaction among learners, you can effectively create a collaborative learning environment.

  • Return on equity (ROE). As your eLearning experience evolves, some training exercises and course elements will naturally become obsolete. Measuring the efficacy of eLearning elements so that you can stay ahead of the curve and continue to simultaneously remove and add elements to your eLearning experiences is an integral part of creating a successful and profitable eLearning course.

  • Exploring other metrics and approaches to eLearning, such as personalized learning programs. An AI can use learner information stored in the Learner Record Store (LRS) that can create personalized eLearning experiences for different learning types and can allow you to drastically improve the efficacy of your eLearning

You can see exactly how proper reporting of your learning analytics can help you deliver more engaging courses that improve training outcomes and learner retention in this on-demand webinar: Using Analytics to Deliver Engaging Courses.

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When you’re done you’ll know exactly how to get the insights that will enable managers to identify, prioritize change to learning programs and step up their engagement game.

In conclusion, tracking a variety of learning metrics can allow educators to drastically improve the efficacy of their eLearning experiences. If you're struggling to effectively analyze and track metrics in your eLearning experiences, you might want to check out Lambda Analytics.  

Keen to keep climbing down the Learning Analytics rabbit hole? Here’s what we’ve got for you:

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