Using Academic Analytics to Support and Catalyze Transformation
University of California Davis
University of Indiana Bloomington
University of Saskatchewan
The objective of RAC3 is to facilitate faculty use of learning analytics tools and technology in order to maximize student learning gains. Our hypothesis is that improvement of curriculum, instruction, and assessment practices at the course and program levels requires the ability to measure change in a useful and appropriate way. We cannot improve what we cannot measure. Currently, access to student data is limited and fragmented as are the tools and know-how needed to analyze the data. Once a critical mass of individuals and/or departments is supplied with and use data and analytic tools to measure change and inform decisions about student outcomes, evidence-based decisions and practice will become normalized. This shift to a culture of data and self-reflection is a necessary (but not sufficient) condition for systemic change to occur.
Preliminary tests in which faculty were given access to data and analysis tools resulted in quick and positive shifts in the course planning and developing process toward evidence-informed practices. Such rapid and high-level integration into program culture suggests that these resources are meeting a significantly underserved demand, and that the potential to affect broad and long-term change is great.
Measures of intervention impact will include (but are not limited to):
- Tracking faculty use of analytic tools including the type and quality of driving questions
- Changes to course curriculum, instruction, and assessments informed by evidence – and resulting performance outcomes
- Changes to program-level curricular planning, TA training, and/or faculty reward systems related to instruction
- Faculty engagement in curricular pilot projects
Methodologies will include interviews of faculty and students, online analytics, and qualitative analysis of course content, instruction, assessment, student assessment responses, and iterative course revision.
Aspects of RAC3 are already underway and funded by an AAU grant initiative. However, development and dissemination of a comprehensive suite of academic analytic tools will require significant investment of additional time and resources. We will seek funding to support A) continued construction of the tools by the various partner development teams, B) implementation of tools and training at each partner campus, and C) assessment of impact including characterization of how data are used and if/how tools and data are impacting faculty culture and student outcomes.
UC Davis hosted a RAC 3 workshop in December, 2013. Representatives from several BVA partner universities attended and conversations have continued.
How to Engage with RAC3
Please contact Marco Molinaro at firstname.lastname@example.org