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Understanding Student behaviour in your LMS

Recently I’ve completed heading up a project with ACTE  that allows tutors / trainers to be able view up to 12 weeks of their students learning analytics, all from within the LMS. Analytics for monitoring student behaviour in a Learning Management System (LMS) is generally reserved for management and academic teams to base decisions on. Whilst this is great, what about the Trainers? How does a Trainer know and understand what their Students are doing in the LMS? We wanted to make some of this data available to Trainers to allow them to better understand their Student’s behaviour, using this information to improve Trainer / Student engagement. We looked into various analytics tools and one in particular seemed to accommodate what we were looking for. It’s called Piwik. We added some additional custom variables to each record including the userID from Moodle being sent to Piwik. We now had access via the Piwik API to fetch data based on the userID and display it in a meaningful way that Trainers could understand and benefit from. Trainers can now see individual student analytics including: Total Time on Moodle Last logged into Moodle Total Actions performed Total Files downloaded, what was downloaded and when Total Page views, what pages on what dates Most visited and active day of the week Devices used to access Moodle including Desktop and Mobile With this type of information at the trainer’s disposal, they can better understand how their students study and engage with the LMS. The benefits of this level of […]

Adult Learning Challenges with Technology – Digital Fear

When we talk about the challenges we face with Adult Learners, there are several area’s that we can focus on. I’ve summed these up as Digital blefs. This post will look at the issue, Digital Fear.   Fear can be defined as:   ‘a distressing emotion aroused by impending danger, evil, pain, etc whether the threat is real or imagined; the feeling or condition of being afraid.’   http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/fear   There is a genuine fear of some learners when it comes to using technology. This need not just be within the bounds of technology with learning, but technology in their life. Fears with the use of technology can be based on a life experience, conspiracy or external influences. A genuine fear of technology can have a detrimental effect on an adult learner. Someone with a fear of technology needs that face to face interaction and will generally use older methods of studying and researching. From experience I have had older family members literally give up when they can’t follow a simple quiz as a pre-requisite for a course. This could be a combination of Digital Experience and Literacy, but there is real fear for some learners.  Instructional Designers and Education Technologists need to consider this in the design of their courses.