Evaluating Learning
Alma Mater Statue

"Teaching is the process of attending to people’s needs, experiences and feelings, and making specific interventions to help them learn particular things." 

-- Mark Smith, What is Teaching?

Importance in the World

A fundamental question that every educator faces is, "How do we know if students are attaining the learning goals?" To evaluate student learning, there are diverse assessment methods such as quizzes, exams, papers, projects, portfolios, reflections, and surveys. These assessment methods, if chosen appropriately, can provide useful information to help improve student learning.

Importance on Campus

With over 5,000 courses offered across more than 150 programs of study in 15 colleges and instructional units and with each course having a unique set of learning goals, it is important to choose appropriate assessment methods to help improve the learning of more than 44,000 students enrolled in these courses. Additionally, there are several outstanding faculty members and departments devising innovative educational approaches requiring innovative assessment strategies.


Starting in 1997, all academic programs were required to create Unit Assessment plans to assess student learning in their undergraduate and graduate programs. The Office of the Provost, through the Learning Outcomes Assessment Task Force, is working to raise awareness and provide support for Campus. Learn more about the Learning Outcomes Assessment program.

How Can CITL Help You with Evaluating Learning?

We work with faculty to select appropriate assessment methods, to develop assessments, and to develop objective measures of student learning from these assessments. We also consult with faculty and departments to design innovative strategies to evaluate the impact of educational approaches on student learning. Email us at citl-eval-learning@illinois.edu to set up an initial consultation.