You make some excellent points about the dangers of over-relying on analytics alone to improve our current education provision. The risk lies in mis-interpretation from senior managers, academics or students themselves. Until we have robust multivariate data which has proven veracity from a broad research base, we cannot rely on crude algorithms of student engagement or progress, nor can we allow stakeholders to make sense of raw data from disparate sources.

I wrote about this earlier in the year in my blog – – because I am convinced that we need to give students and teachers/tutors/coaches shared access to data and effective tools to enable them to communicate (an office used to suffice!). Also critical is for the ‘guide’ to have access to tools which allow feed-forward of discussions, reflections and plan to challenge the learner to develop in new ways. Embedding the data, the conversation and the activities in the student’s own personal learning space reinforces connections between learning, coaching and life-wide, life-long development. For me, the personal portfolio can achieve this, but several VLE’s are also coming close to orientating this information as a process for learners.