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Towards portable learning analytics dashboards - Andrii Vozniuk, Sten Govaerts, Denis Gillet

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The paper was presented at ICALT 2013: http://infoscience.epfl.ch/record/185963?ln=en

This paper proposes a novel approach to build and deploy learning analytics dashboards in multiple learning environments. Existing learning dashboards are barely portable: once deployed on a learning platform, it requires considerable effort to deploy the dashboard elsewhere. We suggest constructing dashboards from lightweight web applications, namely widgets. Our approach allows to port dashboards with no additional cost between learning environments that implement open specifications (OpenSocial and ActivityStreams) for data access and use widget APIs. We propose to facilitate reuse by sharing the dashboards and widgets via a centralized analytics repository.

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Towards portable learning analytics dashboards - Andrii Vozniuk, Sten Govaerts, Denis Gillet

  1. 1. Towards Portable Learning Analytics Dashboards Andrii Vozniuk, Sten Govaerts, Denis Gillet EPFL, Switzerland July 15, 2013 ICALT Beijing
  2. 2. Technology Enhanced Learning 2 http://www.ypfp.org/classroom From local to distributed
  3. 3. Technology Enhanced Learning 3 From well-defined to flexible
  4. 4.  Challenges  Observe, control and adjust the learning process  Consider individual capabilities and preferences  Opportunities  Remote education is mediated by a digital environment  Learners leave a ‘digital footprint’  Increasingly more traces can be recorded  How to meet the challenges? Technology Enhanced Learning 4 Data should be used to improve learning
  5. 5.  What is Learning Analytics “LA is the measurement, collection, analysis and reporting of data about learners in their context, for purposes of understanding and optimizing learning and the environment in which it occurs” – Siemens et. al.  Examples  Student drop out prediction systems  Live statistics about the learners  Individual progress vs group progress Learning Analytics Dashboards 5 LA is becoming an essential component of a learning system
  6. 6. Learning Analytics Dashboards 6 Blackboard
  7. 7. Learning Analytics Dashboards 7 Signals by Purdue
  8. 8. Learning Analytics Dashboards 8 Student Activity Meter by Leuven
  9. 9. Learning Analytics Dashboards 9 Google Analytics Dashboard Dashboard is a popular way to represent LA
  10. 10.  What is portability? “Software portability is the ability to run the same software on different platforms with no or little effort”  Why is analytics portability important?  Switching the platform or using a few simultaneously  Persisting the same learning analytics environment  Portability prerequisites  Access the data in the same way on different platforms  Visually represent the UI components in the same way Learning Analytics Portability 10 Unified data access and portable dashboard representation
  11. 11.  Tightly coupled LA solutions  Developed for a specific platform, e.g. Blackboard  Platform-specific, usually proprietary APIs  Do not work on other platform  Pluggable LA solutions  Integrated into a platform via a plugin interface, e.g. Moodle  Not compatible across platforms  Standalone LA solutions  General web analytics services, e.g. Google Analytics, Woopra  Services developed specific for LA, e.g. CAM web service Learning Analytics Architectures 11 Existing LA dashboards are barely portable
  12. 12. ActivityStreams Open Specifications For Data Access 12
  13. 13. Open Specifications For Data Access 13 Activity Theory ActivityStreams
  14. 14. Open Specifications For Data Access 14 ActivityStreams unifies access to learners’ activity data JSON Specification
  15. 15. Open Specifications For Data Access 15 OpenSocial and ActivityStream unify data access  Social features of a LMS should be accessible as well  Relationship between users, resources and tools  OpenSocial specification  Describes common method for accessing social data  Defines a set of common APIs  OpenSocial is adopted by  Ning  MySpace  Orkut  Some TEL solutions: Sciverse, ROLE
  16. 16.  Widget is a lightweight web-based application  OpenSocial widgets rendered with Apache Shindig Learning Dashboards as Metawidgets 16 Widgets can be used to implement portable components
  17. 17.  Widgets can be combined in a metawidget Learning Dashboards as Metawidgets 17 Metawidgets provide portable dashboard representation
  18. 18. Architecture 18 Allows to port dashboards between learning environments
  19. 19. Prototype 19 Graasp – https://graasp.epfl.ch An agile social media platform for social learning and knowledge management
  20. 20.  Portability is best achieved with open standards  Our solution uses ActivityStreams, OpenSocial and widgets  Already implemented in Graasp  Integration into Moodle is in progress  Can be integrated into other learning environments  Code is available on GitHub  See: http://github.com/react-epfl/ Summary 20
  21. 21. 21 Thank you for your attention! Feedback & Question? Andrii.Vozniuk@epfl.ch