Published on March 15, 2014
Leveraging higher education data to improve student outcomes Eldon Prince
If you want to improve student outcomes, improve learning outcomes If you want to improve learning outcomes, improve the learning experience
…learning outcomes are influenced by a complex interplay of factors particular to an institution, teaching context, and student disposition. - T. Fenwick (Fresh Approaches to the Evaluation of Teaching) How can you improve the learning experience for all types of higher education institutions and courses?
We all love technology How can technology improve the student learning experience? It can facilitate feedback
The problem: Students, who are the customers of education, have little input Teachers, who heavily influence student learning, lack the data to improve teaching Administrators, who can promote change, have little information The solution: Empower students Enable teachers Inform administrators micello.com
Teachers themselves are best positioned to interpret student outcomes according to course particularities and apply the results immediately to improve their teaching. This is why micro-level, teacher-directed evaluation is crucial wherever measures of student outcomes are considered. - T. Fenwick (Fresh Approaches to the Evaluation of Teaching) Where are the data? Create software that facilitates student feedback and promotes improved teaching. This leads to an improved learning experience and student outcomes. Integrating feedback data with existing university databases could yield powerful insights.
Student can see how his understanding compares to the class. Student can choose to allow the teacher to know his identity. Student interface Student can ask a question, answer a question, or make other types of responses.
Teacher interface Overview provides instant feedback on instruction and understanding. Word cloud can be useful, particularly if teachers provide students with a prompt.
Teacher interface Interactive instruction rating allows teacher to read and respond to comments by category. Written responses could also be analyzed according to instruction rating and visualized with bar charts or word clouds. Teachers could track ratings throughout the semester and compare it to previous semesters as well.
Teacher interface Responses can be analyzed according to students’ perceived understanding. Additional features could include segmenting students’ written responses according to instruction and understanding ratings. Integrating real-time data with university data would create a powerful data set to help improve student outcomes.
What are the consequences? Better insight into classroom interactions than end of semester evaluations Inform administrators Identify students that need help before it’s too late Identify teachers that need help Empower students Voice can be heard (can be anonymous) Increase awareness of learning status Promote dialog with teachers Enable teachers Data is too valuable and tempting to ignore Data can allow for mid-semester corrections Data can promote dialog with struggling students
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