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Issue 1 - June 2014



LACE partners are passionate about the opportunities afforded by current and future views of learning analytics (LA) and educational data mining (EDM) but we are concerned about missed opportunities, undesirable consequences of mis-application, investment funding failing to realise value, market failure, etc. LACE is our response, a project to reduce risk and to increase benefit through an approach that accounts for the necessary unity of research, policy and practice.

The Learning Analytics Context

Analysis of data to inform decision-making in education and training has the potential to provide evidence-based insights into learner abilities and patterns of behaviour which in turn can provide crucial insights to guide curriculum design and delivery, to improve outcomes for all learners, and so contribute to national and European economic and social well-being.

Learning analytics (LA) and educational data mining (EDM) offer a valuable source of policy evidence but may also help to teach and assess 21st century skills.

For those, who are just familiarising with learning analytics, please check out this useful infographic.





LACE aims

The main aim of the LACE thematic framework is to be an open structure to be able to capture key problems as they arise in this relatively new field of research.

At the intersection between Thematic Group and Sector we can describe an idealised interaction: policy and research shape new practice, practice should inform research, and policy should be informed by research and practice. The project aims to promote useful interactions at these points but also to make conceptual connections and open channels of communication that will increase knowledge cross-over.


Learning Analytics is now moving from being a research interest to a wider community who seek to apply it in practice. As this happens, the challenge of efficiently and reliably moving data between systems becomes of vital practical importance. System interoperability can reduce this challenge in principle, but deciding where to drill down into the details will be easier with a view of the “big picture”, so the LACE project has published a short briefing on the topic of learning analytics and interoperability.It can be downloaded here. A video about some quick thoughts on the big picture of LA interoperability by Adam Cooper as well as a webinar about the topic are also available.

Recent events

LAK 14: The Learning Analytics and Knowledge (LAK) conference is the major international conference for learning analytics. LAK14, the fourth LAK conference, took place in Indianapolis (24-28 March 2014). Like its predecessors it was largely focused on learning in the post-compulsory sector, i.e. universities and online courses. The LACE project was actively engaged in the conference, but also spent time reflecting on changes and developments in the field. Two themes emerged: MOOCs (massive open online courses) and machine learning. A report on the event can be found here.

Reaching across educational and business sectors

The LACE project is aiming to integrate communities working on LA and EDM from schools. In terms of effective and economic education LACE will explore the role of LA/EDM in providing better evidence for policy and good practice recommendation, its effect on national data collection and statistics, as well as its use in schools.
New industry interoperability standards in the field of smart technical training documentation, repository access and learning experiences tracking such as the new OASIS DITA and CMIS work groups, the ADL (Tin Can) Experience and the AICC CMI5 API initiatives will be investigated in terms of applicability to LA/EDM at the workplace.
The role of analytics at universities has to be looked at in relation to following three pillars in order to transform higher education: design of curriculum – support for students – support for staff. We will do so by sharing effective solutions to real problems through creation of an evidence base, publishing white papers and running workshops and events.

Forthcoming events

LASI_NL: LACE will be co-organising the 2nd Learning Analytics Summer Institute in the Netherlands (LASI_NL) from June 30th until July 1st 2014! Several key researchers from the European projects such as the FP7 Projects LACE and WatchMe as well as the Open Source community Apereo Foundation will present their approach and research agenda towards Learning Analytics. Furthermore, we will have some collaboration between the CAA conference and the local LASI event through a Special Track of Learning Analytics in e-Assessment and a panel discuss on the future of e-assessment in times of Learning Analytics.
We expressly invite people that are new to the field to engage with the Dutch research community around Learning Analytics. LASI_NL tries to bring researchers together in a two-day summer school to foster synergies between national and international research efforts in the field. You are invited to join and exchange your expertise

For future LACE events, track us on Lanyard.


Get Involved

Over the next two years there will be plenty of opportunities to join with LACE and get involved in learning and talking about Learning Analytics. We encourage you to visit our website, join the community, register to receive updates and attend one of our workshops or events.


Last updated 3095 days ago by EDEN News