Learning Analytics initiatives in HTK and CEITER


On Monday, October 29th School of Digital TechnologiesI organized a seminar of the series "Technology Enhanced Learning directions" with the title "Learning Analytics initiatives in Centre for Educational Technology (HTK) and CEITER". Adolfo Ruiz Calleja chaired the seminar and 32 researchers attended, including PhD and master students, members of the School of Digital Technologies, members of the School of Educational Science and researchers from Tartu University. 


The aim of the seminar was threefold: disseminate the research work related to Learning Analytics (LA) carried out in the HTK group and the CEITER project; obtain feedback about the research proposals; and find potential collaborations with other colleagues. For this reason, the seminar was organized as a workshop that promoted the participation and the discussion among the assistants. Adolfo briefly introduced what Learning Analytics is and the role it plays in the CEITER project (slides). Then, the LA proposals in HTK and CEITER were grouped into four topics. Each topic was briefly presented by a group leader and then discussed in a small group during 40 minutes; finally, each group leader reported the main outcomes of the discussion to the whole audience. 


The first group -led by Gerti Pishtari- discussed the support offered by Learning Analytics to STEM education outside the classroom. They focused on Rada, an application developed in the Smart Zoo project. They concluded that there are two main aspects where Learning Analytics features can have an impact. Real-time monitoring, through which teachers can have direct feedback regarding the ongoing learning activity and its participants, as well as features that can help teachers assess the efficiency of their activities and help them make future decisions related to Learning Design and Learning Orchestration outside the classroom.


The second group -led by Luis P. Prieto- talked about the CEITER LA Toolbox and its support to classroom-level innovation, in which teachers (and even students) gather data in their everyday practice, to try to understand their progress towards such innovations. Luis P. demonstrated some of the tools in this toolbox, such as Prolearning, Edulog, or LePlanner, and the participants discussed several realistic scenarios in which these and other tools could be used (for instance, to help communication and assessment in the school practice activities of teacher education students).


The third group -led by Adolfo Ruiz Calleja- focused on Multimodal Learning Analytics (MMLA) infrastructures. More specifically, they discussed how MMLA can support teachers to assess how the students collaborate. In this regard, MMLA open new possibilities as it potentially can assess a co-created artifact together with the face-to-face learning process that was needed in the co-creation. 


The fourth group -led by Kairit Tammets- discussed how the classroom-level Learning Analytics initiatives can scale up to school level, and use it as part of the school development and change processes. Digital Mirror is a tool designed and developed by HTK that can well be used for this purpose. But the management-level changes needed for enhancing the scale of the initiatives is still a question.