Why is it Important to Evaluate the E-learning?

Evaluation is a vital task of an eLearning course or any program that aims at continuous improvement. Evaluation of your eLearning program is the final step in the Addie model. In this step, the effectiveness of the training program in accomplishing the goal is measured.


Why evaluation?

Evaluation enables us to:


  • Assess if the instructional and development objectives are met
  • Determine the quality of the eLearning
  • Understand the pros and cons of the eLearning program
  • Make improvements to ensure that learning strategies are effective

Donald Kirkpatrick’s four-level model of evaluation has become a classic model in the industry. These levels can be applied to eLearning or any other forms of training.

four-level model of evaluation

LevelMeaningQuestions to askEvaluating Method
ReactionsEvaluate the experience of the learners after taking the course
  • Did the participants like the course?
  • Will it be useful to them?
Feedback from the participants through a smile sheets or happy sheets
Learning outcomesMeasure of the increase in knowledge of the learners after taking up the courseDid the participants learn what they were supposed to learn and how much?Assessments to measure knowledge
(true/ false, agree/ disagree)
Behavioral ChangesEvaluate the change in the behavior of the learners after taking the courseDid they change their on-the-job behavior?
  • Measure behavior before and after the program
  • Give enough time between the completion of the program and evaluation and allow them to change their behavior
  • Use sources (peers, boss, participants themselves)
Results for the organizationEvaluate the change in the organization due to the effect of the course on their employeesDid their knowledge and behavior positively affect the organization?See the production, quality, costs, turnover

This evaluation is applicable to different types of training (adapted from Kruse Kevin work) such as:

  • Safety training: Measure reduction in number or severity of accidents
  • Quality training: Measure a reduction in number of defects
  • Management training: Measure increase in engagement levels of direct-reports
  • Technical training: Measure reduction in calls to the help desk; improved use of software or systems
  • Sales training: Measure change in sales volume, customer retention etc.

Evaluating an eLearning course helps to see which component is working and what needs to be removed to make the learning effective.

View eBook on Quality Assurance in E-learning Courseware Development