Structure and Logic of the Learning Analytics Field

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.

Columbia TC from gsiemens

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