Learning analytics is the use of learner-produced information to analyse and predict student progress and performance. This knowledge can then be acted upon to improve the effectiveness of a learning programme.
You may be familiar with web analytics, such as Google Analytics, which monitor people’s movements around a website, their clicks, buying habits, social network interaction and more. Learning analytics is similar. However, it involves looking closely at things like how competent a learner is, how they interact with the curriculum, how influential they are on their academic social network, and where they succeed and fail in the learning programme they are using.
The advantage of learning analytics is that it helps us to better understand the people using the technology. It is all very well creating an impressive Mlearning programme but, even better, it needs to be able to respond to how people use it, and adapt itself to the user. According to elearnspace, in the future learning apps will be offering a much higher level of personalization, responding to how each individual goes through the tasks and tests, and changing the programme to address their specific strengths and weaknesses.
How’s it useful?
If a teacher is able to see which exercises on the app the student finds the hardest, they can target areas of difficulty that need to be worked on. They can look at data to answer questions such as: Is the student spending too long on a task? Are they using ‘language of frustration’ on the learning forums that show they may not be adapting well to the app? Are they logging on and logging off too quickly?
In years to come such analytics will not only mean adapting learning apps to each user, but also looking at their interaction on social networks to start to predict general competencies and communication skills before they have even starting using the app. Now that’s what I call bespoke.
What do you think?
So are Mlearning analytics a good thing or in fact another privacy invasion by online technology? Is it progress or just one step further towards becoming a Big Brother state? Please share comments below.