Learning analytics: ethical issues and dilemmas

Type: Evidence | Proposition: D: Ethics | Polarity: | Sector: | Country:

Approaches taken to understand the opportunities and ethical challenges of learning analytics necessarily depend on a range of ideological assumptions and epistemologies. This paper proposes a socio-critical perspective on the use of learning analytics. Such an approach highlights the role of power, the impact of surveillance, the need for transparency and an acknowledgment that student identity is a transient, temporal and context-bound construct. Each of these affects the scope and definition of the ethical use of learning analytics. The authors propose six principles as a framework for a number of considerations to guide higher education institutions to address ethical issues in learning analytics and challenges in context-dependent and appropriate ways.

Citation: Slade, Sharon, & Prinsloo, Paul. (2013). Learning analytics: ethical issues and dilemmas. American Behavioral Scientist.