Phelim Murnion - Transfer Talk - 10th March 2014

Video Category: 
Transfer Talk

Title: Measuring the Impact of Learning Analytics in Educational Management

In recent years higher education has experienced a paradigm shift. Increasing demands to demonstrate and improve performance are combined with rapid advances in technology-enhanced learning which provide both increased educational capabilities and new data about learners. As a result management decision making processes are increasing in complexity and new analytical information systems approaches are being developed, including learning analytics. Existing research in learning analytics concentrates on technical issues and on operational processes. Within research and practice the impact of learning analytics has been questioned, yet methods for measuring and evaluating the impact and success factors have yet to be fully addressed by researchers.

The objective of this research is to investigate challenges in the assessment of the impact of learning analytics within higher education. To do so, an impact assessment instrument is described, including a taxonomy of success factors and techniques for profiling and measuring learning analytics. The instrument is an extension of existing success models in information systems research, refined for this particular domain. The research is conducted using a design science research methodology which focusses on the development of artefacts. The contribution of this research is threefold: existing research in IS success models is extended to a new domain with new model constructs; research methods in learning analytics are supported by the provision of a new evaluation approach; and practitioners are provided with new tools for assessing and justifying their applications. In the work so far, the instrument has been developed and examined in a pilot study. Work is ongoing on the refinement and evaluation of the instrument in an Irish institution of higher education.