The best thing about learning analytics is that it informs on issues surrounding learning usually hidden from the naked eye. That is, it provides ways to peek into the details of the learning process. More importantly, analytics provides new ground for evidence-based learning interventions. Analytics doesn´t take away the need for a skilled educator but instead highlights the importance of pedagogical expertise.

Education is largely different from many other fields, which have been revolutionized by data. As it is largely related to human interaction, decision making will remain in the hands of skilled educators. Learning analytics do not offer fixes. Instead, using it provides an effective way of improving educational programs and making effective interventions. 

That is to say, the impact of analytics links with the quality of analytics that you have access to. What if you are about to invest in a new learning environment that promises analytics? Or you are already receiving analytical views into your training process? Let’s ask some critical questions on what matters most in learning analytics.

Can I increase the engagement in my course?

The most crucial problem in online learning relates to the frustration when facing ambiguous challenges and getting stuck. Too often this is caused by a confusing or unsuitable learning passage that can hamper even the best course.

To take corrective action, learning analytics should highlight the sections of a course, which are challenging. On the other hand, analytics should also show which parts work and create engagement.

Additionally, you should be able to identify the challenges faced by all learners or just particular groups of learners. Claned uses automatic keywording of materials using natural language processing. In addition to single materials, you have the option of viewing this at a topic level. For example, you can see which of the central themes in a course are problematic.

After setting the initial goal, like engagement, learning analytics can highlight the sections not working and what works already. This offers the basis for identifying the target of improvements and measuring the effects afterward. However, no technology does or will do the actual work of designing appropriate learning activities. But with the support of analytics, the content iteration will be more successful.

Can I personalize my course for different kinds of learners?

Learners are different. They have varying amounts of experience, different strengths, and diverse interests. Some might find your course too easy while others are struggling. Just how different are they and where they differ is up for the learning analytics to reveal.

Learning analytics should be able to identify groups or individuals with specific needs or challenges. Learning analytics can identify distinctions in behavioral patterns. Therefore you can focus on how these relate to performance, quality of social interaction. You can focus even on background variables, such as a professional role in a company.

Once you have been able to identify the differences between learners, you can start to provide tailored paths based on their interests and background. For example, by offering background information for those with less experience in a topic, or alternatively more advanced information for those that need more challenge.

You should be able to intertwine groups from two different backgrounds by first providing a path for each to prepare them for the subject, and then offer a shared part where they can share their knowledge. Imagine, all this with the help of effective learning analytics using your existing materials.

Can I see whether my training programs increase work effectiveness?

Whether you work in a company offering training programs or you are responsible for courses inside an organization, the holy grail is showing the real impact of training. That is, how does the actual performance change as a result of training.

Data is transforming industries like Finances, an area that naturally lends itself well to smart technologies. It has clear metrics and outcomes. As a result, algorithms that optimize the desired outcomes can do their magic. Learning, on the other hand, is another story.

In a learning process, the affecting factors, nature of the information, or data, and even the results can not be easily defined. However, this is slowly changing as more developed technologies. For instance, natural language processing can make sense of sets of unstructured data.

However, combining learning data with performance indicators it is possible to reveal what kind of impact the training programs are producing. These outcome metrics can include customer service, sales, or other measurable results.

Education providers can now prove what they can deliver through their training programs. This possibility will soon distinguish the best in the business.

Arm yourself with goal-oriented analytics

When we started our journey in developing Claned, we wanted to invent the new standard for learning analytics and how it provides the ability to support successful training programs. In order to do this, we had to create the best learning analytics in the business. And we did, and it is now available to enhance training programs anywhere.

We believe the investment in learning platforms should contain a clear view of ROI. Most importantly, through the number of drop-out rates, improved learning results, employee satisfaction, and improved sales.

We believe the use of learning analytics should relate to your training goals from the start.

That is why, in Claned, we focus on two main ways of using learning analytics to help education providers.

Our learning platform holds inbuilt analytics for real-time follow-up on an education program level. You will have these for every course implemented in the platform.

Secondly, we offer tailored data consultation services to answer specific challenges. Evidence-based decisions and personalization according to gathered analytics can significantly help you improve the experience for your learners.

If you want to hear more about how we can help you to achieve new heights of success for your training programs, get in touch and we tell you more.

topi litmanen

About the Author

Dr. Topi Litmanen worked as a Chief Educational Scientist in Claned. He was responsible for ensuring, that the pedagogical aspects of Claned are based on evidence-based learning research.