Thursday 23 November 2017

The University’s Enhancing Student Success project team is excited to be able to announce that the LEARN student engagement dashboard has now gone live for a small number of Level 4 programmes involved in a pilot study, which will run for the remainder of the 2017-2018 academic year.

LEARN (Learner Engagement and Attendance Report at Northampton) is designed to help University staff better support students with their studies by collating and sharing various forms of engagement data with individual students and using this as a basis for more informed conversations through our Personal Academic Tutoring (PAT) system. In turn this can help students to have a clearer understanding of how well they are engaging with their studies and take action to improve their engagement and, ultimately, to improve their attainment.

Since early summer, a team within IT Services have been working in collaboration with the software provider, HP SolutionPath, to build a bespoke product that draws existing data streams about student engagement into one easily accessible and easy-to-use visual dashboard that can be viewed by both students and their PATs as well as relevant professional services departments and other members of University management and academic teams. The engagement data that is being used includes attendance, NILE logins and access to module sites, E-Resource use, Learning Development appointments and PC Logins. It is anticipated that in future we will also be able to include information about whether or not students are submitting their assignments and their grade profile.

Alongside the technical data integration work, Dr Helen Poole, LEARN Project academic lead, has been working closely with Programme Leaders to determine how the dashboard will be used in practice. Fundamental to this is knowing that no decisions will be made, and no actions taken, solely on the basis of the data streams. Rather the combined engagement profile will be the starting point for a discussion with the PAT and provide a more joined-up approach to supporting students, agreeing actions to improve engagement and referring students to appropriate sources of help and support from our professional services teams. Where appropriate, professional services teams will also be able to access an individual student’s profile in order to gain a more complete picture of that student’s engagement with their academic studies and to enable a more holistic approach to student support to be provided.

Helen said:

‘I am extremely excited that the new Learner Analytics system is to be released this week. It has taken a tremendous effort on the part of a team at the University to bring us to the point of going live with LEARN, but the investment will enhance our ability to effectively support all students through their studies via our personal academic tutoring system. Staff who have been introduced to the system are equally excited about the potential of LEARN, and I am looking forward to leading the academic element of the pilot implementation’.

The following programmes are involved in the pilot study:

Faculty of Arts, Science and Technology:

  • Games Art
  • Popular Music

Faculty of Business and Law

  • Law
  • Accounting and Finance

Faculty of Education and Humanities

  • History
  • Childhood and Youth

Faculty of Health and Society

  • Criminology
  • Dental Nursing

In addition, the Joint Honours Law and Criminology students and students on the first year of the Foundation Study Framework are participating to provide a broad user group.

Staff wishing to find out more are advised to contact colleagues in their faculties who are involved in the pilot.

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