The Office of Learning Analytics
The Office of Learning Analytics:
- Leads campus-wide learning analytics initiatives using the highest scholarly standards.
- Upholds university and professional ethical and privacy standards
- Cultivates a culture of data-informed learning among faculty, students, and staff
As modes of instructional and daily activity continue to become increasingly mediated by digital devices, we are presented with increasing possibilities for understanding and improving instructional practice and learning by leveraging digital learning data. For example, simple assessment analytics can often indicate whether assessment activities are plagued with high guessing or student misinterpretations that lead to suboptimal feedback or grading. In other cases, automated reports have been shown to help instructors identify struggling students and provide supportive interventions. In addition, as learning experiences become more digitally mediated, complex simulations and other digital tools may provide valuable information regarding student problem solving processes if data are analyzed appropriately.
These affordances are not naturally or automatically accrued by the implementation of computer software. Data are simply records of activity whose meaning must be constructed by a rich understanding of the context, history, and constraints of the educational and learning environments. Implementing such work to improve learning at the institutional level requires continued research and program development as well as professional development regarding best practices for working with data driven learning tools.
To achieve the broad goal of improving instruction and learning with data, the work of the OLA would focus on four areas.
- Empower with Actionable Insight
Improve instruction with actionable insight to faculty by collaboratively conducting and interpreting analyses of learning and instructional activities and strategies.
- Empower with Knowledge
Empower faculty and students to improve their learning and instruction by supporting the acquisition, use and understanding of learning analytic tools and processes.
- Empower with Community
Encourage & support continued research, practice and experimentation among the individuals and organizations undertaking learning analytics at the University.
- Empower with Structure
Accelerate the application of learning analytics at Notre Dame by providing a unified view of needs and recommended directions with respect to learning analytics and data culture, data collection, reporting, data and process governance, technological infrastructure, and professional development.