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University of Michigan School of Information


UMSI-led dashboard for student academic success receives IMS Global Learning Impact award

Friday, 05/31/2019

In the field of learning analytics, student data is collected, measured and analyzed to help educators understand how students can be successful learners and determine when interventions might be necessary. 

But what if educators could take that same data and serve it up to students in a way that could encourage student behavior changes and support self-driven success? An award-winning project from researchers at the University of Michigan might do just that.

My Learning Analytics (MyLA) is a student-facing dashboard tool designed at University of Michigan. The tool earned a gold medal award at the 2019 IMS Global Learning Impact competition. The Learning Impact awards recognize “outstanding, innovative applications of educational technology to address the most significant challenges facing education.”

“This Learning Impact award is what can happen when you assemble a great team of people with complementary expertise and dedication to student success,” said Stephanie Teasley, research professor at the University of Michigan School of Information (UMSI).

Teasley led the project with faculty and students from UMSI and the School of Education, partnered with staff from Information Technology Services, to create MyLA. The project was designed with an aim toward visualizing learning data in a way that helps students improve their study behaviors. 

Based on data from the student information system, Canvas learning management system (LMS), and Caliper event streams from 7 different learning tools, the MyLA dashboard displays three views of the students’ own data showing files accessed, assignment activity and grade distribution. 

MyLA showed early success during a pilot launched with 312 students in three classes in 2018. Students who used the dashboard reported they believed the dashboard was valuable. 

  • 88% of students agreed it changed the way they plan their course activity
  • 86% agreed it changed their sense of control over their course performance 
  • 70% agreed it changed how much time and effort they put into the course
  • 75% agreed it changed their confidence that they understand the course material 
  • 84% agreed it improved their performance in the course

Encouraged by this early success, the researchers have rolled out an expanded pilot within the University of Michigan, and have announced an initiative to coordinate a joint pilot with Indiana University and the University of Iowa.

MyLA research team:

Stephanie Teasley (UMSI)
Matthew Kay (UMSI)
Stuart Karabenick  (SoE)
Carl  Haynes (UMSI)
Shannon Elkins (UMSI)
Reed Coots (LSA)
Jennifer Love (ITS)
Zhen Qian (ITS)
Pushyami Gundala (ITS)
John P Johnston (ITS)
Matthew Jones (ITS)

- Jessica Webster, UMSI PR Specialist