The video of my talk at Columbia U’s Teachers College is now online:
Learning analytics is hardly new. It has roots in various fields, including business intelligence, HCI, assessment/evaluation, and research models in general. What is new, however, is the rise of quantity and quality of data being capture as learners engage in learning processes. As a consequence of better and more data, analytics have gained attention in education. Currently, three specific strands exist: educational data mining, academic analytics, and learning analytics.
I had the opportunity to engage in discussion around the shape of the learning analytics field a few weeks ago when I met with researchers and academics at the EdLab at Columbia University. Slides from my talk are below. It is interesting to watch how quickly analytics are being adopted in education. Starting at slide #22, I draw distinctions between the research methods and data sources for LA and EDM by looking at a few exemplary papers from each field.
SoLAR will be offering the third instance of Learning Analytics and Knowledge open online course: https://www.canvas.net/courses/learning-analytics-and-knowledge. This eight week course provides an introduction to learning analytics, including tools and techniques. We have numerous guest speakers arranged as well. A greater area of focus for this iteration of the course is on analytics tools. We will be including tutorials and small user groups to do a deeper dive on different analytics techniques.
Learning analytics was a reasonably prominent area of interest in the education conference circuit during 2012. Through SoLAR, we’ve been developing support for researchers, students, and practitioners through conferences, regional workshops, online presentations, and (soon to be announced) our journal of Learning Analytics.
One project that I’m excited about is our upcoming Learning Analytics Summer Institute at Stanford July 1-5, 2013. The call for submissions to attend this event is currently open (until January 30). We are working on raising funding to cover the cost of participants. If LA is something that interests you, as a student or faculty member, I encourage you to apply to attend!
Proceedings of the 2nd International Conference on Learning Analytics and Knowledge have been posted. It’s encouraging to see how rapidly learning analytics literature is developing…
This issue reflects the rapid maturation of learning analytics as a domain of research. The papers in this issue indicate LA as a field with potential for improving teaching and learning. Less clear, currently, is the long-term trajectory of LA as a discipline. LA borrows from numerous fields including computer science, sociology, learning sciences, machine learning, statistics, and “big data”. Coalescing as a field will require leadership, openness, collaboration, and a willingness for researchers to approach learning analytics as a holistic process that includes both technical and social domains.
The presentation below was delivered in July at the AASCU conference in San Francisco. I grabbed the term “data intensive university” from a conference I attended at the University of Technology, Sydney in 2011. While the term is a bit awkward, it gets at the challenge facing universities: to use organization data to improve teaching, learning, research, administration, and reporting.
The call for hosts for LAK14 is now open – information on the timelines and requirements is available here. With continued interest in the conference series and growing literature in the field, we’re (SoLAR) eager to connect with an organizing team/university that shares our interest in developing learning analytics as a research field…
The call for papers for LAK13 in Leuven, Belgium is now open. The first two years of the Learning Analytics & Knowledge conference have been wonderful learning and networking experiencing. LAK12 was sold out almost a month before the event and the program was outstanding. I’m sure LAK13 will be equally impressive!!
The only problem with the LAK conference is that it only happens once a year. Things are developing too quickly in the learning analytics space for only an annual conference. As a result, SoLAR has initiated regional conference events (SoLAR Flares). The first event will be held at Purdue University Oct 1-3. More information, including registration details, can be found here.
At the recent LAK12 conference in Vancouver, I delivered a presentation on learning analytics as both a research space and a domain of practice. The paper of the take is available here:
Learning Analytics: Envisioning a Research Discipline and a Domain of Practice (.pdf)
…and the slides are available here:
The recordings of the presentations from LAK12 are now available online: http://www.solaresearch.org/events/lak/videos-of-presentations-at-lak12/