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How to Use Learning Analytics to Assess Student Learning

June 8, 2021 No Comments

Featured article by Amanda Taylor, Independent Technology Author


According to SOLAR (the Society for Learning Analytics Research), the term “learning analytics” is used to define the process of collection, analysis, measurement, and reporting of data about students and the overall learning process. Simply put, it is the collection and use of data with the goal of enhancing the quality and effectiveness of learning.

For decades, people have been trying different methods and approaches to assessing the quality of teaching and learning, monitoring student performance, and analyzing other related data. Learning analytics spans all of that. It uses modern computational analysis techniques to collect all forms of data (including digital) and analyze it in order to identify opportunities for improvement.

The concept of learning analytics isn’t entirely new. In fact, with the global digitalization that has shaped a whole new branch of education – e-learning, the concept of learning analytics is being widely applied in the online environment to assess student performance. However, the same concept is possible to adapt to a traditional classroom, as well as blended teaching environments too.

The Use of Learning Analytics for Better Performance

The biggest benefit of modern education is that technological progress has given us a plethora of smart tools that make different aspects of learning simple and stress-free.

Namely, modern students have access to helpful databases to simplify their research. Also, there are such helpers as EssayWritingService – a professional essay writing service that helps students get quick academic help to cope with their tasks and boost grades. And there are many other helpful tools.

Similarly, there are also tools that make learning analytics available to everyone. Later in this article, we are going to tell you about a few of them. But, first, let’s identify the core uses of learning analytics.

In a white paper published by IBM in 2001, the company hinted at some core ways how educational facilities can use learning analytics to everyone’s benefit. These points are still current to this day, so here they are:

– Tracking individual progress of every student;
– Disaggregating performance by certain factors (e.g., major, age, etc.);
– Identifying students who are at risk of failing;
– Preventing student attrition from a program or course;
– Predicting student potential;
– Analyzing and measuring traditional assessment instruments and techniques;
– Testing and assessing the effectiveness of curricula;
– Identifying and developing effective teaching approaches and methods.

From what you already know, you can tell that analysis, assessment, and prediction of student performance are the core focus points of learning analytics. To be more specific, the primary goal is to identify any gaps or red flags early on to prevent students from failure.

Apart from what we’ve already said, there are some other uses we can possibly make of learning analytics. Namely, today, this concept is widely used to provide personalized learning solutions. Analytical tools enable teachers and institutions to get to know their students better and, thus, come up with more personalized and effective learning methods.

Also, learning analytics allows providing timely feedback. Since it enables teachers to get a quick and detailed assessment of each student’s performance, gaps, and progress, they can react to these points and provide students with constructive feedback.

Adopting Learning Analytics: Top 3 Tools Available Today

Looking at all the possible uses of learning analytics, it becomes clear that this is something our educational programs need to adopt in order to ensure greater learning outcomes for every student.

However, how can teachers and schools integrate this concept into their programs? As we said earlier, there are ready-made solutions that make it easy.

In the list below, we’ve collected the top three tools that can bring learning analytics into every classroom:

1. Bright Bytes

The first tool worth attention is Bright Bytes – a SaaS-based data and analytics platform for education aimed at helping institutions improve the academic performance and overall well-being of their students

The platform comes with a wide range of features. It allows tracking and evaluating how students and teachers utilize technology in the process of learning. Also, it measures skill levels, evaluates performances, and does much more.

2. Yet Analytics

Another helpful tool is Yet Analytics. This is one of the most advanced and complete analytical tools for the ed sector that can be found today.

Yet Analytics offers plenty of opportunities for improving learning content, tracking and assessing student progress, and it also features accurate predictive analytics.

3. Clever

The next tool on our list – Clever, is a US startup, which has already gained a fairly good reputation. Basically, Clever is a sign-on tool meant for both students and teachers that was designed to improve the quality and effectiveness of learning.

Using this tool, teachers can set individual and general objectives for their students, monitor their progress, share resources, and analyze performance.

The Bottom Line

Based on everything discussed earlier, we can confidently state that learning analytics has huge potential from the faculty’s perspective. The concept itself, as well as the tools that we shared with you, have the potential to make both teachers’ and students’ lives easier and, at the same time, significantly improve the learning process.

Hopefully, this article has helped you grasp the general idea behind learning analytics and discover some of the benefits it can bring to students and teachers as well. And, for everyone who is wondering how to use learning analytics to assess student learning, we hope that the tools we shared will come in handy!

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