Insight at the fore of Learning Analytics


In a recently published article with, Professor Alan Smeaton discusses the advanced learning analytics that Insight Centre for Data Analytics are applying to help individual students in their progression through first year undergraduate degrees.

In the first semester of the last academic year 1,200 students in DCU signed up to PredictEd a weekly email alert service that predicts what their exam result will be, based on their level of engagement with course material online.

Students who opted to receive the alerts performed better in their exams compared to those who opted not to receive the alerts, with a net increase of 3% in exam marks, based only on the weekly alerts across 10 different modules. For one module, Business Mathematics, the improvement in exam performance was 8%.

Learning analytics has huge potential to address some of the problems that Irish students encounter. It can help them to make better decisions and support them in this environment of independent learning.

Prof. Alan Smeaton believes ‘If we can learn from the online behaviour of first year students, and use that information to help them over early speedbumps, it will spare at least some people the stress and expense of dropping out.’

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