Indiana University Bloomington
The University of British Columbia
University of California Davis
University of Kansas
Queens University of Canada
University of Saskatchewan
The Bay View Alliance Learning Analytics Fellows program is a Community of Transformation that has embarked upon a multi-year project to use data analytics to improve student learning, retention and success. The Fellows program is being led by Indiana University Bloomington, which began its own Student Learning Analytics Fellows Program in 2015 (Rehrey et. al., 2018), and will be joined by the University of British Columbia, the University of Kansas, Queens University of Canada and the University of Saskatchewan.
The BVA Learning Analytics Community of Transformation is a collaboration between six research institutions from Canada and the U.S.
According to Kezar and Gehrke (2015) Communities of Transformation have several distinctive characteristics that quite often distinguish themselves from similar Communities of Practice (Wenger, McDermott, & Snyder, 2002) and Faculty Learning Communities (Cox & Richlin 2004). Communities of Transformation (CoT) create and foster an innovative space that did not already exist, rely on philosophy more than practice, and adhere to that philosophy as core to their community engagement and action.
In our case, the Learning Analytics Community of Transformation (LACoT) is comprised of individual distinct Learning Analytics Fellows programs from each campus (Macfadyen et. al). Each campus is engaging faculty in scholarly research about their students, their behaviors and the choices they make on their pathway toward graduation. Generally speaking, each Fellows program consists of an administrator, a facilitator, and a group of faculty members, who often times herald from different disciplines, departments or programs.
Each Fellows Program engages faculty in research about the impact of existing course transformation projects, expands interest in evidence-based instruction, and collectively creates an interdisciplinary and multi-institutional community around the broader issues of student success. By developing culture that values and empowers individuals and units to make data-informed decisions, the program will help build capacity and bring awareness to the use of learning analytics in order to transform teaching and learning and improve course design and assessment.
Thus, faculty will harness the growing collection of student data on their individual campuses to engage with a data-driven learning community. Working in conjunction with data stewards and other relevant units they will help to enhance and expand the availability of data, develop a fuller understanding of the value of an undergraduate educational experience, and create new models to be used for institutional decision making. We anticipate that these activities will encourage faculty to make connections between student performance in their own classes with the pathways students take on their journey toward success during their college years.
LAK Conference News Release
Cox, M. D., & Richlin, L. (2004). Building faculty learning communities. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.
Kezar, A., & Gehrke, S. (2015). Communities of transformation and their work scaling STEM reform. Pullias Center for Higher Education.
Macfadyen, L. P., Steinwachs, M., Groth, D., Rehrey, G., Shepard, L., Greer, J., … Molinaro, M. (2017). Developing institutional learning analytics “communities of transformation” to support student success (pp. 498–499). Presented at the Learning Analytics and Knowledge Conference, Vancouver, BC: ACM Press.
Rehrey, G., Groth, D., Shepard, L., & Hostetter, C. (forthcoming, 2018). The scholarship of teaching, learning and student success: Big data and the landscape of new opportunities. In J. Friberg & K. McKinney (Eds.), Conducting and applying SoTL beyond the individual classroom level. Indiana University Press.
Wenger, E., McDermott, R. A., & Snyder, W. (2002). Cultivating communities of practice: A guide to managing knowledge. Harvard Business Press.
George Rehrey email@example.com, Indiana University Bloomington