Conley Readiness Index

Conley Readiness Index (CRI) is the only readiness inventory based on more than a decade of research analyzing the content of entry-level college courses and the opinions of thousands of secondary and postsecondary students and instructors about what it takes to succeed in college.

CRI measures readiness and provides actionable data, assessing the Four Keys of College and Career Readiness as identified by Dr. David T. Conley. Research shows that students who have mastered the Four Keys are more likely to earn good grades and succeed in their college-level coursework and beyond.

The simple act of taking CRI helps students take ownership of their own learning by identifying their aspirations and skill set, which informs educator redesign initiatives such as persistence and retention.

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Based in Research

Dr. David T. Conley’s CRI research methods included comprehensive surveys, interviews, focus groups, longitudinal studies, statistical analyses, meta-analyses, comparisons of GPAs with SAT scores and college acceptance rates, and exhaustive literature reviews from a range of social science disciplines.

From this base of data, the Conley Model describes 41 actionable “aspects” (also known as objectives/outcomes/skills) upon which educators and students can focus to improve readiness and prepare for college and career success. These aspects are organized into the “Four Keys to College and Career Readiness” (Think, Know, Act, Go) that has been used by national organizations such as The College Board and the International Baccalaureate®, and by numerous states and school districts. CRI offers Pre- and Post-Assessment of the Four Keys:

1. THINK (Key Cognitive Strategies)
  • Problem formulation: Hypothesize, strategize
  • Research: Identify, collect
  • Interpretation: Analyze, evaluate
  • Communication: Organize, construct
  • Precision & accuracy: Monitor, confirm
2. KNOW (Key Content Knowledge)
  • Structure of knowledge: Key terms and terminology, factual information, linking ideas, organizing concepts
  • Technical knowledge & skills: Challenge level, value, attribution, effort
3. ACT (Key Learning Skills and Techniques)
  • Ownership of learning: Goal setting, persistence, self-awareness, motivation, help-seeking, progress monitoring, self-efficacy
  • Learning techniques: Time management, test-taking skills, note-taking skills, memorization/recall, strategic reading, collaborative learning, technology
4. GO (Key Transition Knowledge and Skills)
  • Contextual: Aspirations, norms/culture
  • Procedural: Institution choice, admission process
  • Financial: Tuition, financial aid
  • Cultural - Postsecondary norms
  • Personal - Self-advocacy in an institutional context

Read Dr. Conley's bio

David T. Conley, PhD

Professor, Director, Center for Educational Policy Research, University of Oregon; President, EdImagine Strategy Group; Senior Fellow for Deeper Learning under the sponsorship of the Hewlett Foundation

David T. Conley, PhD, is a professor of educational policy and leadership and founder and director of the Center for Educational Policy Research (CEPR) at the University of Oregon, where he received both the Innovation in Research Award and the Faculty Excellence Award.

Through the Educational Policy Improvement Center (EPIC) and CCR Consulting Group, both in Eugene and Portland, Oregon, Dr. Conley conducts research on a range of topics related to college readiness and other key policy issues in collaboration with range of national organizations, states, school districts and school networks. His line of inquiry focuses on what it takes for students to succeed in postsecondary education.

His latest publication is Getting Ready for College, Careers and the Common Core, and his previous books on these topics include College and Career Ready: Helping All Students Succeed Beyond High School and College Knowledge: What It Really Takes for Students to Succeed and What We Can Do to Get Them Ready. He earned his BA from the University of California, Berkeley, and MA/PhD from the University of Colorado, Boulder.

Actionable Results

On Track: Redefining Readiness in Education and the Workplace

Learn more about college and career readiness and how to ensure that learners achieve results and make progress toward those goals.

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MyStudentSuccessLab™ Case Studies

Ray Emett Salt Lake Community College

Module post-tests indicated learning gains across 15 of 16 course learning objectives. Average scores improved from 67 percent on the Pre-Course Diagnostic to 77 percent on the Post-Course Assessment.

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Kae Jensen College of Western Idaho

Completion rates increased by nine percent with the implementation of MyStudentSuccessLab.

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Amy Baldwin and Ann Fellinger Pulaski Technical College

When students did not show significant improvement on questions tied to specific learning objectives in the post-course assessment, two modules in MyStudentSuccessLab were assigned in full: Goal Setting and Learning Preferences. Post-test scores on these two modules have increased as a result.

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Dr. Edesa Scarborough and Dr. Chris Maurer The University of Tampa

This case describes the results of a formal assessment of student learning objectives related to college transition, time management, and academic planning, all of which are of critical importance to the success of college students.

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Frequently Asked Questions


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How Conley Readiness Index Works

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Conley Readiness Index and Students

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Administration and Integration

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