Students would share personal data to improve their grades, survey finds

2nd March 2016 at 09:19
personal data students Jisc

Most further education students would be willing to allow their personal data to be shared if it improved their learning experience, a survey has found.

According to digital services organisation Jisc, 77 per cent of FE students would allow their college to use personal information about their learning activities if it helped them improve.

The survey of 166 FE students also found two-thirds of respondents would approve of their college collecting new data on their study habits if it helped raise their grades, while just over half said they would be willing for their personal data to be used if it stopped them from dropping out of college.

Jisc is currently setting up a national learning analytics service to allow colleges to understand their data. Today the two-day Jisc Digifest 2016 begins in Birmingham, and TES is the official media partner.

Phil Richards, chief innovation officer at Jisc, said: “Every time a student interacts with their college through online services – if they go to the library, log on to their virtual learning environment or submit work online – they build a digital footprint.

“Their college can then use this to create a picture of their study habits and activities, including how, when and where they like to learn, and personalise their approach, as well as giving them the ability to identify and intervene for any students at risk of dropping out.”

He said that just as the retail, publishing and banking sectors were using big data and analytics to get insights into their customers’ behaviour and use this to be more competitive, further education needed to do the same. 

“Learning analytics has the potential to support retention, satisfaction and attainment of students, delivering better results for the individual, and for the college – especially important in this time of change and austerity,” he added.

On Thursday a list of the 50 most influential social media users in FE, compiled by Jisc, will be announced.

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