Helping teachers "know thy students"

The first key takeaway from Motz, Teague and Shepard (2015) is Learner-centered approaches to higher education require that instructors have insight into their students’ characteristics, but instructors often prepare their courses long before they have an opportunity to meet the students. The following illustrates one of the problems teaching staff (at least in my institution)

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The perceived uselessness of the Technology Acceptance Model (TAM) for e-learning

Below you will find the slides, abstract, and references for a talk given to folk from the University of South Australia on 1 October, 2015. A later blog post outlines core parts of the argument. Slides Abstract In a newspaper article (Laxon, 2013), Professor Mark Brown described e-learning as a bit like teenage sex. Everyone

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It's not how bad you start, but how quickly you get better

Wood & Hollnagel (2006) start by presenting the Bounded Rationality syllogism All cognitive systems are finite (people, machines, or combinations). All finite cognitive systems in uncertain changing situations are fallible. Therefore, machine cognitive systems (and joint systems across people and machines) are fallible. (p. 2) From this they suggest that The question, then, is not

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Refining a visualisation

Time to refine the visualisation of students by postcodes started earlier this week. Have another set of data to work with. Remove the identifying data. Clean the data. I had to remind myself the options for the sort comment – losing it. The following provide some idea of the mess. [code lang=”sh”][/code] :1,$s/”* Sport,Health&PE+Secondry.*”/HPE_Secondary/ :1,$s/”*

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Does learning about teaching in formal education match this?

Riel and Pollin (2004) talk about a view of learning that sees learning occurring through engagement in authentic experiences involving the active manipulation and experimentation with ideas and artifacts – rather than through an accumulation of static knowledge (p. 17) They cite people such as Bruner and Dewey supporting that observation. When I read that,

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What do "scale" and "mainstreaming" mean in higher education?

@marksmithers has just written a blog post that makes the following point that talks about a new fund to promote innovation in highered. I know $5M isn’t a huge amount but the principle just seems so misguided. There is no problem with innovation in higher education. The problem is adopting and mainstreaming innovations across a

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Revisiting the IRAC framework and looking for insights

The Moodlemoot’AU 2015 conference is running working groups one of which is looking at assessment analytics. In essence, trying to think about what can be done in the Moodle LMS code to enhance assessment. As it happens I’m giving a talk during the Moot titled “Four paths for learning analytics: Moving beyond a management fashion”.

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Exploring BIM + sentiment analysis – what might it say about student blog posts

The following documents some initial exploration into why, if, and how sentiment analysis might be added to the BIM module for Moodle. BIM is a tool that helps manage and mirror blog posts from individual student blogs. Sentiment analysis is an application of algorithms to identify the sentiment/emotions/polarity of a person/author through their writing and

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Reading – Embracing Big Data in Complex Educational Systems: The Learning Analytics Imperative and the Policy Challenge

The following is a summary and ad hoc thoughts on Macfadyen et al (2014). There’s much to like in the paper. But the basic premise I see in the paper is that to fix the problems of the current inappropriate teleological processes used in institutional strategic planning and policy setting is an enhanced/adaptive teleological process.

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