This blog post notes that, in May 2015, the World Bank was concluding an analysis of over 800 policy documents related to the use of information and communication technologies (ICTs) in education from high, middle and low income countries around the world in order to gain insight into key themes of common interest to policymakers. Theme 6 relates to learning analytics, specifically to 'supporting the collection, processing analysis and dissemination of education-related data to relevant stakeholders'. Initial policies tend to focus on the collection of basic enrolment data. As ICT use becomes more prevalent, more systematic and holistic views of data collection, processing analysis and dissemination emerge.
See also the SABER (systems approach for better education results) work on education management information systems (EMIS) at http://saber.worldbank.org/index.cfm?indx=8&tb=2
This study provides strong indications that there are discrete online behaviour patterns that are representative of students’ overall engagement and final assessment grade. The visualisation of online
student engagement/effort affords instructors with early opportunities for providing additional student learning assistance and intervention – when and where it is required. The capacity to establish early indicators of ‘at-risk’ students provides timely opportunities for instructors to re-direct or add resources to facilitate progression towards patterns of behaviour that represent what has been termed a 'low-risk category' (e.g. participation in group discussions, regular access of discipline content and review of assessment criteria).
The paper identifies opportunities for instructors to make these changes, but that would be a next step - so it does not provide evidence that learning analytics improve learning support and teaching, only that they offer potential to achieve this.
: Dawson, Shane, McWIlliam, Erica, & Tan, Jen Pei-Ling. (2008). Teaching smarter: How mining ICT data can inform and improve learning and teaching practice. Paper presented at the ascilite 2008, Melbourne,