Distance education providers often tout self-discipline and motivation as
top contenders in what makes a successful distance learner. But do you
really know how being self-disciplined and motivated works out in real
life? The following quiz might help you to determine if you have those
qualities that can help or hinder distance education.
This quiz was prepared by Michael P. Lambert, Executive Director at the
Distance Education and Training Council in Washington, D.C. He makes no
claims to scientific research in coming up with these questions but rather
has drawn on his experience and deep involvement with distance education.
What is your level of motivation, self-reliance, discipline, and ability
to reason by yourself?
Q: Do you enjoy talking with friends about current topics in a
Q: Do you tackle jobs you have been assigned immediately rather than
having to be reminded one or two times by your superiors?
Q: Do you prefer to get your news from a newspaper rather than TV?
Q: Do you feel compelled to read a book through to the end as opposed to
dropping it when it gets boring?
Q: When engaged in a project at work, do you enjoy researching questions
on your own rather than telephoning an expert for a quick answer?
Q: In doing crossword puzzles, are you likely to research a clue before
you would ever consider consulting friends for a word solution?
Q: Would you prefer walking alone in a park as opposed to walking with a
group of two or three friends?
Q: Do you tend to finish a project until you are satisfied that it is the
best work you can do before starting another project?
Q: Do you stay late at work when you are absorbed in a task, rather than
"punch the clock" and go home at "quitting time"?
HOW DID YOU SCORE? Give yourself two points for each yes answer.
16-18 Yes--Highly likely to succeed.
10-14 Yes--Likely to succeed.
4-8 Yes--May succeed, but not a sure bet.
Fewer than 4--Maybe distance learning is not for you.