As educators increasingly embrace social technologies to support learning, challenges arise in evaluating the quality and nature of student participation in activities using technology external to the institution’s Learning Management System (LMS). The Beyond LMS project extends the field of Learning Analytics (LA) by developing an open source toolkit for performing sophisticated analysis of learners’ engagement in connected learning environments. The toolkit will provide web based forms and contextualised dashboards to enable both students and academics to explore and analyse student behaviour while learning is occurring (rather than after the fact). Unlike previous work, this approach removes the requirement for highly developed technical skills to implement LA, creating a bridge between technical developers and pedagogical experts. The toolkit will enhance teaching teams’ ability to facilitate social learning, using state of the art measurement and intervention techniques. This will develop student awareness of their own learning processes, and enable teachers to intervene to facilitate enhanced connected learning experiences using ubiquitous social media.
The Connected Learning Analytics Toolkit is the final result of the project.