Graduate Research Papers


Open Access Graduate Research Paper


Internet in higher education; Distance education students--Rating of; Adult college students--Education;


Linking assessment with learning objectives and outcomes has become significantly important in assessing adult learners in higher education. To better understand how adults learn and their expectations for learning, this paper provides a literature review that examines adult learning theory, learner characteristics, and motivation factors that shape our understanding. Additionally, this paper provides an in-depth review on the definition of assessment, types of assessment, formative versus summative assessment, alternative assessment, self-assessment, and the most appropriate and essential implementing principles and strategies in an online learning environment. The resources were retrieved using the University of Northern Iowa Library's online cataloging system - UNISTAR as well as resources from two online metadatabases - Panther Prowler and Google Scholar™. The literature review reveals that assessment is not only a key indicator for both teaching and learning; it is also an extended motivator to trigger online learners. While innovative strategies and techniques for effectively using assessment need to be further explored and developed, this paper provides some good practices for aligning assessment with course objectives and learning outcome to ensure quality online learning in higher education.

Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Arts


Department of Curriculum and Instruction

First Advisor

Leigh E. Zeitz


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Date Original


Object Description

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