Author Adam Cooper

Adam works for Cetis, the Centre for Educational Technology and Interoperability Standards, at the University of Bolton, UK. He rather enjoys data wrangling and hacking about with R. He is currently a member of the UK Government Open Standards Board, and a member of the Information Standards Board for Education, Skills and Children’s Services. He is a strong advocate of open standards and open system architecture. Adam is leading the workpackage on interoperability and data sharing.

During June 2014, LACE collaborated with Jisc and the EUNIS E-Learning Task Force to run a workshop session on “Electronic Management of Assessment and Assessment Analytics” prior to the 2015 EUNIS Congress. Jisc is the charity with a mission to maximise the benefits of technology for UK Higher Education and Further Education and Skills sectors. EUNIS Congress is the annual meeting of the European UNiversity Information Systems community, and has an agenda spanning highly technical infrastructure issues through to educational technology. The backdrop to the workshop was Jisc’s ongoing programme of work on the Electronic Management of Assessment (EMA), which…

The development of IT standards and other kinds of technical specifications to support interoperability in educational technology has been underway for more than 15 years, but the focus of attention has usually been on system integration or portability of educational content. The growth of interest in learning analytics has led to an increase in the number and diversity of the people who identify specifications and standards as being important because analytics frequently requires the use of data from multiple sources. It is not simply that learning analytics has widened interest in the products of interoperability and standards specialists; the practice…

Sharing Learning Analytics data between organisations may sometimes be a highly desirable action, both for furthering research and as part of an expertise or technology based service. This document describes a number of examples to show how this can be the case, to illustrate similarities and differences, and to tentatively identify some of the possible causes of success or failure of sharing data for learning analytics. This page should redirect to http://www.laceproject.eu/dpc/learning-analytics-data-sharing-current-examples-2014/ (it was published as a blog post in error)

LACE is pleased to announce that it will be organising a one day summit event to broker collaboration around the idea of an Open Learning Analytics platform – based on principles of modularity, open architectures, and open standards – in Amsterdam on December 1st 2014, collaborating with colleagues from the University of Amsterdam and the Apereo Learning Analytics Initiative. The idea of an Open Learning Analytics platform was first advanced by a group of leading thinkers on Learning Analytics from Europe, Australia, and North America in a 2011 visioning paper published by the Society for Learning Analytics Research (SoLAR). Since…

The question of whether or not something works is a basic one to ask when investing time and money in changing practice and in using new technologies. For learning analytics, the moral dimension adds a certain imperative, although there is much that we do by tradition in teaching and learning in spite of questions about efficacy. I believe the move to large-scale adoption of learning analytics, with the attendant rise in institution-level decisions, should motivate us to spend some time thinking about how concepts such as validity and reliability apply in this practical setting. Motivation comes from: large scale adoption…

We should all be worried when data about us is used, but when the purpose for which it is used and the methods employed are opaque. Credit ratings and car insurance are long-standing examples we have got used to, and for which the general principles are generally known. Importantly, we believe that there is sufficient market-place competition that, within the limits of the data available to the providers, the recipes used are broadly fair. Within both educational establishments and work-place settings, an entirely different situation applies. There is not the equivalent of competition and our expectations of what constitutes ethical…

Our friends at the Apereo Learning Analytics Initiative – the Apereo Foundation is a membership organisation acting as a home for several Open Source Software development projects and incubators  – have just announced a webinar, being delivered by four of its members. The subject will be the ongoing evolution of the Marist College Open Academic Analytics Initiative (OAAI) academic early alert system and the webinar will include a demonstration of the open source technology built to automate the OAAI process, including a Sakai Admin tool for data generation and the new Learning Analytics Processor (LAP). The Apereo Learning Analytics wiki…

The LACE Workshop, “Developing a Learning Analytics Strategy for a Higher Education Institution” took place on June 17th 2014, with over 35 participants exploring the issues and considering the question of what such a strategy would look like. Approaching Strategy as a Business Model The approach taken was to use an adapted version of the Business Model Canvas – see the workshop home page for more information – to attempt to frame a strategic response to Learning Analytics (LA). The use of this approach, in which the Canvas was used flexibly rather than rigidly, was predicated on the idea that…

Interest in Learning Analytics has moved from researchers to early adopters and the topic is now starting to invite a strategic response at institutional level. LACE is offering a half-day workshop at the Cetis Conference 2014, “Building the Digital Institution”, to bring together interested parties to explore what such a strategic response might look like, and to capture the thinking that emerges for sharing with the wider community. This workshop will explore what a Learning Analytics Strategy might look like in a Higher Education Institution through: short presentations, open discussion, and group work in which workshop participants will design…

In 2011, a number of prominent figures in learning analytics and educational data mining published a concept paper on the subject of Open Learning Analytics (PDF), which they described as a  “proposal to design, implement and evaluate an open platform to integrate heterogeneous learning analytics techniques.” This has the feel of a funding proposal vision, a grand vision of an idealised future state. I was, therefore a little wary of the possibility that the recent Open Learning Analytics Summit (“OLA Summit”) would find it hard to get any traction, given the absence of a large pot of money. The summit…

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