Collegiate Learning Assessment


What is the Collegiate Learning Assessment (CLA)?

Developed by the RAND Corporation and the Council for Aid to Education (CAE), the CLA is an open-ended assessment that allows for a direct measure of student learning in the areas of critical thinking and writing. Beginning in the 2006-2007 academic year, this assessment has been administered to entering freshmen in the fall and graduating seniors in the spring at CSU Stanislaus.

Why do schools use the CLA?

Institutions use the CLA to estimate how much they contribute (value-added) to their students' development of higher order skills. CLA results are used by the institution to improve teaching and learning.

Institutional results from the CLA are reported by CSU Stanislaus on the College Portrait as part of the Voluntary System of Accountability.

What's in it for me?

For the spring 2013 administration, each senior who completes the 90 minute exam (the first 50 to register) will receive a $25 Warrior Card. All participating students will also receive an individual score and an explanation of their strengths and weaknesses in terms of analytical/writing ability in comparison to their peers.

How do I register for the CLA at CSU Stanislaus? When will it be given?

If you have taken the SAT or ACT and will be graduating in spring, summer or fall 2013 - you are eligible! Seniors meeting the CLA qualifications will receive an email invitation to participate from the Office of Assessment in early March, 2013.

You can also register here!

The CLA will be given in the CSU Stanislaus Modern Language Lab (L110H) or the MSR training lab (MSR 333) at the times listed below.

Spring 2013 CLA testing times:

  • Monday, March 25, 2:00-3:30pm, Library 110H
  • Tuesday, March 26, 2:00-3:30pm, Library 110H
  • Wednesday, March 26, 2:00-3:30pm, Library 110H
  • Tuesday, April 02, 9:00-10:30am, MSR 333
  • Tuesday, April 02, 1:00-2:30pm, MSR 333
  • Wednesday, April 03, 9:00-10:30am, MSR 333
  • Wednesday, April 03, 1:00-2:30pm. MSR 333

If you have any questions about the CLA or your invitation to participate, please email or call 209-664-6746.

What is the format of the CLA?

As noted in the CLA student guide, the CLA contains two task types: the Performance Task and the Analytic Writing Task. All tasks are open-ended and administered online. 

No prior knowledge of any particular field is necessary in order to perform well on the CLA.

Below are several links with more information for students about the CLA:

For additional information, view the CLA Student Guide video below:

(Once playing, double-click on the video to view in full-screen)

To view past institutional CLA reports, see the Office of Institutional Research University-Wide Assessment Methods page.