Posts made by Kelly Edmonds


I don't know if I agree with you, Borivoj. I guess it depends on one's philosophy of education. smile

You state, analytics "could determine the methodology of teaching too much". I am not completely convinced we shouldn't provide some structures and frameworks versus allowing a more loose approach to teaching - however, even the most liberal teachers learns and uses methods on some manner- no tabula rasa there. Research has been done on how kids learn, the curriculum has been developed, and modern versions of teaching are unfolding (albeit, slowly). There is a base to work from (and improve).

If we don't use our findings from applying analytics, what will we use them for if not to inform our practice?


I felt the same, George, when I read the Educause article from this week's materials. However, what you/we are exploring now is a bit of a paradigmatic shift. I think turning the large ship of the educational structure, reporting and accountability right to the level of government will be slow. I don't think they have grasped the idea of network or distributed learning.

However, developing analytical techniques to provide different measures or results, as explored in this course, and packaged for easy use will provide institutions with a tool they might embrace. In essence, it might take applied research to prove it to established organizations.


I recall reading an Educause article on a survey they conducted in higher education institutes about their shift in priorities and roles of key staff. It seemed to me they were aware of the need for better information. The article was from 2007 and titled, Current Issues Report, 2007.  

One of the top ten issues was Administrative, ERP and Information Systems. It seemed CIOs were concerned about honing the right information.

In short, I think management is in need of good information for decision making. Hopefully, movements like evolving methods for learning analytics will serve that need.


Gillian, thanks for your comments. I think we need to determine what learning is. Yes, an old question, but if we don't know what we are looking for we can't measure it. To me learning is not about the number of posts but what students do with it. I think we need to start with the end in mind - assessments - and rich assessments such as reflections, creations, arguments, etc. Going backwards, we can research the tools used by students to arrive at their understanding and work. If situated in the cloud and accessible, we can review the types of interactions, materials explored, and tools used.

It seems to me most people in here are saying the same thing. Student action in a LMS is only a part of their learning. With a diverse and wide spread networked world, we need to reconfigure how we capture and analyze data about student learning.


It's been interesting exploring the range of analytical tools and reading the key blog entries George shared lately. Like some I am learning about this movement and don't feel equipped to share insights or recap my understanding at this point. Being the analytical type, I hold back until I completely understand and have read all, which might take a few years! Smile. As a result, I am grateful for those who are sharing their thoughts and resources.

One thing that is concerning me about analysis of this magnitude is the validity and authenticity of the data. I am impressed with the volume of data the tools can manage but wonder about the compatibility, origin and validity of it.

I don't have the time to review the data presented so far but do plan to attend the LAK11 conference (I live in Calgary) where maybe I can explore this concern deeper.

Anyone else feel the same?