In this manual, references to DARS now refer to TWC. The manual includes both links to public content and links to content available only to staff.

Chapter 2: Baseline Assessment

2.1 Determining Consumer Training Needs

(Revised 12/10)

A baseline assessment is used to determine the consumer's skill level and training needs. You, the assistive technology trainer, should conduct a baseline assessment before training begins unless the counselor, EAS, or designee has already completed one. A baseline assessment may have been completed by the consumer's counselor, EAS, or designee.

2.2 Baseline Assessment

(Revised 12/10)

Answer the following questions during the baseline assessment.

  1. What is the consumer's primary purpose for learning about computers and computing?
  2. What is the consumer's level of computer literacy?
    • What software is the consumer familiar with?
    • What does the consumer know about hardware?

    Note: To determine a consumer's competency level, ask the consumer to perform certain tasks. Record the tasks and how well the consumer performed each one (for example, the consumer performed the task without difficulty, the consumer performed the task with difficulty, or the consumer could not perform the task).

  3. What does the consumer know about input devices?
    • Is the consumer familiar with the QWERTY keyboard?
    • Is the consumer familiar with the layout of the numeric keypad?
    • What does the consumer know about extended keys such as backslash, function keys, etc.?
    • Is the consumer proficient using the mouse?
  4. Which functions does the consumer feel are essential to complete required tasks?
  5. What are the three most important objectives the consumer wishes to accomplish? For example,
    • to learn computer screen access,
    • to become proficient at word processing,
    • to use PowerPoint, Excel, or some other business application (Record the specific applications), or
    • to efficiently use the operating system and necessary applications.
  6. On a scale of one to five (five being expert), what does the consumer consider to be his or her level of competency in each of those three areas of interest?
  7. How fast can the consumer type?

Note: The consumer must be able to type at least 30 words per minute to receive assistive technology training. A typing speed test may not be required if the consumer is in a working situation that does not require a minimum typing speed. The consumer's situation is determined by the EAS.

2.3 Performance Objectives and Measurements

(Revised 12/10)

Measure the following during the baseline assessment.

  1. The consumer can identify and define computer hardware such as monitor, CPU, disk drives, and removable media—Yes or No.
  2. The consumer understands software types such as word processors, screen readers, screen magnifiers, and adaptive software—Yes or No.
  3. The consumer can identify the important elements of the extended keyboard such as the numeric key pad, the six-pack keypad, Ctrl keys, Alt keys, and Windows logo key—Yes or No.
  4. The consumer understands the concept of multi-key commands such as Shift, Ctrl, and F6Yes or No.
  5. The consumer's typing speed—words per minute.