Using Learning Analytics to Increase Student Success
How are your students working through your course? Are they accessing the material in a timely manner? Do they engage with some material more than others? Is this related to their success in the course? How can you know?
It’s always been hard to nail down answers to these questions, especially in face-to-face classes. But if you use Blackboard to deliver some course materials, even in fully in-class courses, you can use its built-in tools for professors to get some answers.
As a professor, you have the option to generate general course reports to measure student activity in the online components of your course, including tests, delivered through Blackboard. You can generate these reports whenever you like. They can give you added insights into your student’s performance whether you teach face-to face, in a hybrid or blended environment, or fully online. It may also guide your course design based on evidence from how students are actually engaging with your material.
There are three types of reports you might find most helpful. Two of them reveal how your students are accessing the course overall: Course reports and Performance dashboard. Both of these are accessible through the Course Management menu under Evaluation. The third type, Item Analysis gives you information about your quiz and test questions.
- Course reports present information about course usage and activity for all students. You can generate them in multiple formats including PDF, HTML, Word, and Excel. There are seven Course reports you can select from. Purdue University has produced a series of helpful short videos about generating and interpreting Course reports.
Performance dashboard generates one report for your whole class list showing you columns such as “last course access”, “days since last course access”, “review status”, “Discussion Board”, and “View Grades” (links to grade centre).
Item analysis is the report about tests and quizzes. It provides valuable insights into how your students did on an individual test or quiz. You get measures such as average score and average time to completion, as well as scores for how each question performed (which questions were too easy, too hard, which questions seemed good at separating students, etc.).