International experts launch weimagine:Data program

The u!magine team partnered with the Adaptive Learning & Teaching Services (ALTS) team of the Learning Technologies Unit to explore the ways that data can be used to support learning and teaching in higher education. The weimagine:Data program consisted of a number of face-to-face and online lectures, workshops, panel discussions and demo sessions which ran over a period of six weeks where visiting professors and learning analytics experts, members of the Wagga and broader Riverina community, and CSU academic and professional staff came together to:

  • explore the range of data sources available to inform teaching and learning in higher education;
  • examine how different approaches to learning analytics can influence the way we ‘see’ and ‘use’ data;
  • discuss and debate issues or concerns regarding ethics and big data as they relate to learning, e.g., surveillance, capitalism, privacy, exploitation, identity, to name a few;
  • identify digital technologies to support academics’ interrogation of the learning data to better understand students’ learning experiences and their teaching practice;
  • discover ways students can use data to inform their learning journey; and
  • showcase examples of learning analytics in practice.

International Experts in Learning Analytics visit CSU to kickstart our we!magine:Data season

The weimagine:Data program was opened in the CSU Engineering building on Bathurst campus by Dr. Bart Rienties, Professor of Learning Analytics at the Institute of Educational Technology of the Open University UK. Bart discussed his experience with learning analytics data and findings from large-scale implementations involving over 200,000+ students across a range of contexts including The Open University UK. Key takeaways included they ways  instructional design can be optimised using the principles of learning analytics, and the extent to which can learning analytics can promote ‘personalisation’ or ‘generalisation’ for diverse populations of students. Download a copy of Bart’s slides

Tim, Lyn, Cass, Bart and Sandra
From left to right: Tim Klapdor, Lyn Hay, Cass Colvin, Bart Rienties, Sandra Wills

In the same week, CSU hosted Dr Rebecca Ferguson in Wagga. Rebecca is a Senior Lecturer in the Institute of Educational Technology (IET) at The Open University UK, and is a leading member of the international learning analytics community. While visiting Wagga campus, Rebecca met with a number of DLT staff to discuss issues regarding learning analytics, learning design, and open learning initiatives, and presented a livestreamed lecture across all CSU campuses on the Learning Analytics Community Exchange (LACE) project’s Evidence Hub – an effort to relate research evidence in learning analytics to four propositions about learning analytics: whether they support learning, support teaching, are deployed widely, and are used ethically. Rebecca also presented a guest lecture at Wagga TAFE targeting the broader education community, where she explored the use of learning analytics and the role they may play in the future of learning. This attracted K-12 teachers, TAFE teachers, CSU academics and sessional staff from Wagga and surrounding areas. Download copies of Rebecca’s slides:

Contributed by:

Lyn Hay, Senior Lecturer & Online Learning Innovation Leader, uImagine, Division of Learning & Teaching, Charles Sturt University

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