Self-Knowledge on the Adult Learner's Part

Hi all,

How much do our learners know about themselves and how they learn?  Do they know what barriers stand in their way to be a successful learner?  For students with disabilities, and possibly with all students in general, learners may not have this self-knowledge.  

Within the assessment process, this is an important component,.  Teachers plan a critical role by observing and asking questions that help students see and analyze their skills and challenges.   

There are effective tools to get learner input.  One that I used is “Analyzing My Learning: Strengths and Struggles,” an adapted version of Screening for Adults with Learning Disabilities.  This document has been used as a tool for developing learner self-knowledge.  The document was adapted by Margaret Lindop, formerly of the Center for Literacy Studies, The University of Tennessee, 1999, from Screening for Adults with Learning Disabilities: the Role of the Practitioner in the Assessment Process, National Adult Literacy and Learning Disabilities (ALLD) Center, Summer, 1998.

I have posted this document under the "Documents" tab for you to review and possibly try with a student,  At first glance, what are your thoughts about using such a tool?  Would it be helpful to guide your instruction?

Does anyone already use a similar tool?  If so, will you share it with the group?

Thank you.

Rochelle Kenyon, SME



Hi Rochelle,

I was excited to look at that tool, but I didn't see it under the documents tab for Adult ELL.  Did you post it to one of the groups' documents, and if so, which group?


Hi Karen,

I am glad that you asked the question.  After I posted the new discussion strand, I tried uploading the document I had created to the Documents section in the Disabilities group.  When I saw that my position as SME didn't allow me that privilege, I contacted my Kratos program person.  She told me that the document would have to be sent in for 508 compliance.  Then, I sent her the original source document where I originally found this tool.  Yesterday might have been a snow-day, so I expect to hear back from her on this issue as soon as possible.

Once it is posted, it may only show up within the Disabilities group since that is where I planned to post it.  When this issue gets resolved, I will ask for the tool to be automatically posted to all the Documents tabs for each group that my message was sent to.  

We will get it posted for you~  Sorry for the delay.

Rochelle Kenyon, SME

Disabilities in Adult Education group


Hello again Karen and others,

I was just contacted by Kratos about the Analyzing My Learning: Strengths and Struggles document.  It was decided that my Word document was not 508 compliant.  Instead, I will post the URL to the original source document so everyone can access it.

Keys to Effective LD Teaching Practice The document, Analyzing My Learning: Strengths & Struggles, is after the un-numbered page Appendix B, and is marked pages 1 through 7.   If anyone wants the Word version that I developed (which is not 508 compliant), contact me privately and I will email it to you.   Thanks,   Rochelle Kenyon, SME Disabilities in Adult Education group  

Hello, Rochelle,

Thanks for your persistence in making this treasure of a resource available to us.  I have been doing PD work with teachers in communities of practice and will be doing a short conference workshop on facilitating increased learner autonomy.  The "Analyzing My Strengths..." piece to serve self awareness and learner empowerment is excellent, as are the many other strategies and helpful information in the larger text.  I look forward to reading more.  I will definitely be sharing many of these elements in a number of ways with colleagues and other teachers.




You asked if others have used learner self-inventories like the one you shared.  I have used the learning style inventory in the ESL intermediate high textbook Future 4 (Pre-Unit, p. 3) and the reading habits questionnaires native language/English in More Reading Power (p. vii-viii), as well as the Reader Interest and Background Inventory used by Project STAR and CALPRO's Evidence-Based Reading Instruction Institute.  (The Reading Apprenticeship folks also have several extensive student self-assessments.  (For downloadable documents, go to

I believe, as the Greek philosophers encourage, that to know thyself is the beginning of power.  Just as I have been empowered by learning about myself, so have I found that students have felt very empowered.  From there they can make and achieve specific goals, better assist their children, etc.  Any time we can take to facilitate student self-learning is time well-spent, especially when we can balance needs assessment with the all-too-easily forgotten "funds of knowledge" or strengths our adult students bring to their learning and our classrooms.

Thanks for initiating this thread.  I look forward to learning more from others' posts.


Hi Dave,

I certainly agree with you.  In several of the adult education graduate courses I taught, I always included a lesson on self-inventories.  For those students that weren't teachers, I asked them to work with their own family members or friends to administer the tool.  I was not surprised at all to find out how fascinated they were with the results and how their test-takers commented positively about their self-knowledge.

I was always surprised at how educators were not using this wonderful tool (or one similar to it) with students. 

Do we have group members who routinely use such inventories?

Rochelle Kenyon, SME


Hi Dave,

Thanks for jumping in to the conversation.  Did you access the document, "Analyzing My Learning: Strengths and Struggles?"  What were the elements that you found most helpful?  Are you in a position where you can use or it with adult education students?

Rochelle Kenyon, SME

Hi group members,

I wanted to expand on the location of the Analyzing My Learning: Strengths and Struggles document.  It is one of the resources within an exceptional document entitled, Keys to Effective LD Teaching Practice.  It was developed by Margaret Lindop and a team of adult educators from the Center for Literacy Studies (CLS) at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Tennessee.  CLS is also the LINCS Region 2 Professional Development Center.  This resource is also included in the LINCS Resource Collection on Disabilities.  It has also been one of my "go-to" resources for training on LD.

Earlier in our Community of Practice, I posted a discussion strand to introduce this resource.  It was labeled Keys to Effective LD Practice and is dated August 3, 2014.  There are other interesting instructional strategies like Direct Instruction and Visualization that were highlighted.  I encourage you to check out the entire document.

Happy reading!

Rochelle Kenyon, SME