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Learning analytics and supporting practices

The AnalyticsAI project is developing learning analytics and supporting practices to help Higher Education Institutions to support smooth learning at different stages of studies. During the fall of 2018, we identified user needs from students, teachers, as well as faculty and university administrators. In the spring and summer of 2019, we will be moving towards application development, which will be piloted starting in autumn 2019.

Learning analytics refers to the utilisation of data, generated from learning and studying, as feedback to different user groups. While analytics has been used in many fields for a long time, it has only been used in the optimisation of education and learning in the past ten years, and with increasing emphasis in most recent years. Because learning analytics is based on the digital footprint of students, the use of analytics is closely linked to the digitalisation of education, i.e., to the use of information systems and digital environments, increasingly used in Higher Education Institutions.

Our project focuses in particular on student guidance, study design, progress monitoring and support, and leadership. Currently, most tools that utilize learning analytics have been developed to support learning and study optimization during the course. At AnalyticsAI, we focus on supporting the overall study path, in the long term.

An integral part of the use of learning analytics are the related legal issues, such as data protection, as well as the ethical aspects, such as e.g. to whom the student information should be made available within the educational institution, and what we show the student himself. Based on the needs and experiences of different user groups, we create operating models for the application of learning analytics. Particularly important aspects on the use of learning analytics, refer to student privacy, accountability and transparency of data collection and use, as well as data storage and the various methods of analysis.

Author

Anni Silvola,

University of Oulu

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