The self-rating scale of self-directed learning (SRSSDL): A factor analysis of the Italian version

Lucia Cadorin, Guido Bortoluzzi, Alvisa Palese

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: The development of self-directed learning (SDL) is a growing priority among nurses and other health care workers: they need to be prepared in order for their university education to be effective and relevant to their lifelong learning. To learn in a self-directed manner, it is necessary to develop an awareness of one's ability to self-learn and then to implement appropriate and effective strategies; progress must be assessed using validated measurement tools. Objectives: The aim of this study was to examine the factor structure of the Italian version of the Self-Rating Scale of Self-directed Learning (SRSSDLIta), and to provide evidence of its validity. Design: A cross-sectional design was undertaken. Participants: Given that the instrument is composed of 60 items, a total of 600 to 900 participants were targeted. In addition, according to the theoretical assumption that self-directed learning - as a crucial component of lifelong learning - is a measurable skill that is developed across the individual's professional life, a maximum variation sample was examined. Therefore, 847 participants were involved, including 453 nurses, 141 radiology technicians, 182 nursing students and 68 radiology technician students. Methods: Principal component analysis and factor analysis were performed. Results: The Italian version of the SRSSDL Scale consists of 40 items composed of eight factors: Awareness (α = 0.805), Attitudes (α. = 0.778), Motivation (α. = 0.789), Learning Strategies (α. = 0.789), Learning Methods (α = 0.781), Learning Activities (α = 0.676), Interpersonal Skills (α = 0.684), and Constructing Knowledge (α = 0.732). Conclusions: The SRSSDLIta consists of 40 items across eight factors. The shorter Italian version might reduce the time needed to complete, thereby making the tool faster and easier to use.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1511-1516
Number of pages6
JournalNurse Education Today
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2013


  • Factor analysis
  • Health-care students
  • Health-care workers
  • Instrument
  • Italy
  • Nursing
  • Self-directed learning
  • Tool

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nursing(all)
  • Education
  • Medicine(all)


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