Author Tore Hoel

Tore Hoel is affiliated with Learning Centre and Library at HiOA, and has been working within the learning technology standardisation community for more than ten years. He is now working on Learning Analytics Interoperability within the LACE project.

Both the Finnish and the Norwegian research councils are exploring how learning analytics research should be organised and supported. In end of May a workshop was organised by The Research Council of Norway and Academy of Finland with researchers from the two countries. The LACE project was introduced as an important instrument for community building by Tore Hoel, who gave a presentation on Data security issues, ethical issues and challenges to privacy in knowledge-intensive learning and its evaluation. The presentations are available from the Academy of Finland website. A video of Hoel’s presentation (25 minutes) is available on LACE’s Youtube channel:

Without data, no learning analytics. Data sharing is a precondition for even thinking about the benefits of personalised learning, improved retention, better learning design, and all the other promises of learning analytics. To make data sharing happen, we need to understand the barriers and enablers. This is the aim of a small survey the LACE project is carrying out to prepare a deliverable on Data Sharing Requirements and Roadmap. We would like your input. Please join us in a brainstorming activity, first coming up with issues and concerns that could be seen as enablers and barriers to data sharing. Go…

The Research Council of Norway and Academy of Finland organise a two days workshop on learning analytics in Helsinki, Finland on May 21st and 22nd. The workshop will be organised around three working groups exploring machine learning and educational data mining; feedback and adaptive learning environments & Massive Open Online Courses; and formal and informal learning, online and offline activities. The work of the LACE project will be presented by Tore Hoel of Oslo and Akershus University College of Applied Sciences at a plenary session on data security issues and challenges to privacy in knowledge-intensive learning and its evaluation. Registration…

Warming up for the big community gathering of the learning analytics community, LAK15 March 16 – 20, the Apereo Learning Analytics Initiative recently organised a webinar presenting their vision for an Open Source Learning Analytics platform. You can revisit the webinar online taking part in a high level overview of the learning analytics landscape and see a blitz demonstration of some running code witnessing that the vision is more than some hot air. Josh Baron of Marist College (the host institution of LAK15) pointed to three strategic institutional issues to consider when building new tools for learning analytics. The first issue is whether to choose a software-centric…

A successful workshop and establishment of a new special interest group on learning analytics under the auspices of Asian-Pacific Society of Computers in Education (APSCE), this was the outcome of a LACE project initiative of last year. Till now the focus on learning analytics in the region has been relatively modest, at least in terms of published research. Now experts from many different countries are joining the SIG, and there is good hope that a workshop on LA will be organised at each annual ICCE conference from now on. The International Conference on Computers in Education is an annual conference…

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…

The New York Times reports (November 16, 2014) on «Privacy Concerns for ClassDojo and Other Tracking Apps for Schoolchildren».  ClassDojo, a new app claimed to be used by at least one teacher in roughly one out of three schools in the United States, lets teachers award points and subtract them based on a student’s conduct. While the app has some gains for the teacher, it is clearly the parents that are targeted by the developer as it allows the teachers to communicate directly with them. ClassDojo is free to install and use; the business model, however, is to develop to…

The Belgrade consortium meeting of the Open Discovery Space project was a good opportunity for LACE to test the idea of organising workshops on ethical questions and dilemmas of learning analytics. ODS is the biggest European schools project to date with 51 partners sharing its ambition to make a difference for European schools by building communities and sharing resources. The workshop was part of the eConference organised by the Serbian Metropolitan University on 23rd September. Around 20 participants were given a short introduction to learning analytics and potential dilemmas related to sharing of data, and engaged in a animated discussion…

When 87 percent of the U.S. population can be uniquely identified with a reasonable degree of certainty by a combination of ZIP code, date of birth, and gender you may realise that it may be pretty hard to de-identify the data exhaust of modern education. Anonymising the data does not give what the Learning Analytics community is looking for. This is demonstrated in a fresh report from MIT and Harvard where a data set from 16 MOOCs released as open data was analysed against the original data that had not gone through the de-identification process. «We show that these and…

The xAPI specification has foreseen that, at some point in time, Communities of practice will “need to establish and define new Verbs and Activities to meet the need of their constituency”. Now the time has come for defining such a community. This August the first meeting was organised, with more webinars to come. The objective of the group is to generate best practices and requirements for creating an xAPI Community of Practice; identify design profiles (use cases); and standardise how xAPI statements are expressed for each type of design profile. There is a presentation from the kickoff meeting available for download. The initiative…