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Research into learning gain

With partners, we commissioned independent research into learning gain.

The study looked at different national and international ways of measuring learning gain.

It drew on a number of sources, including a call for information to institutions, and interviews with selected institutions and professional accrediting bodies.

The report concludes that measuring learning gain needs fully testing throughout the sector.

Testing needs to explore how valid and feasible the various different approaches to measuring learning gain are within the English context.

It also concludes that dialogue with the sector and experts to build understanding and secure buy-in for further steps should underpin such a pilot exercise.

Key findings from the research

  • The research defines learning gain as the ‘distance travelled’, or the improvement in knowledge, skills, work-readiness and personal development students can show at two points in time.
  • A high-quality student experience can potentially be measured in different ways. Learning gain is just one of these ways.
  • The English higher education sector has some awareness of learning gain. But understanding varies across the sector, and measuring it is in its early stages.
  • Learning gain can be measured in different ways to suit different purposes.

Read the report

Page last updated 4 February 2016

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