Advances in information and communication technologies have contributed to the increasing use of virtual learning environments as support tools in teaching and learning processes. Virtual platforms generate a large volume of educational data, and the analysis of this data allows useful information discoveries to improve learning and assist institutions in reducing disqualifications and dropouts in distance education courses. This article presents the results of a systematic mapping study aiming to identify how educational data mining, learning analytics, and collaborative groups have been applied in distance education environments. Articles were searched from 2010 to June 2020, initially resulting in 55,832 works. The selection of 51 articles for complete reading in order to answer the research questions considered a group of inclusion and exclusion criteria. Main results indicated that 53% of articles (27/51) offered intelligent services in the field of distance education, 47% (24/51) applied methods and analysis techniques in distance education environments, 21% (11/51) applied methods and analysis techniques focused on virtual learning environments logs, and 5% (3/51) presented intelligent collaborative services for identification and creation of groups. This article also identified research interest clusters with highlights for the terms recommendation systems, data analysis, e-learning, educational data mining, e-learning platform and learning management system.
The purpose of this study is to reveal the status of scientific publications on learning analytics from the past to the present in terms of bibliometric indicators. A total of 659 publications on the subject between the years 2011-2021 were found in the search using keywords after various screening processes. Publications were revealed through descriptive and bibliometric analyses. In the study, the distribution of publications by years and citation numbers, the most published journals on the subject, the most frequently cited publications, the most prolific countries, institutions and authors were examined. In addition, the cooperation between the countries, authors and institutions that publish on the subject was mentioned and a network structure was created for the relations between the keywords. It has been determined that research in this field has progressed and the number of publications and citations has increased over the years. As a result of the bibliometric analysis, it was concluded that the most influential countries in the field of learning analytics are the USA, Australia and Spain. The University of Edinburgh and Open University UK ranked first in terms of the number of citations and Monash University as the most prolific institutions in terms of the number of publications. According to the keyword co-occurrence analysis, educational data mining, MOOCS, learning analytics, blended learning, social network analysis keywords stand out in the field of learning analytics.
Distance Learning has enabled educational practices based on digital platforms, generating massive amounts of data. Several initiatives use this data to identify dropout contexts, mainly providing teacher support about student behavior. Approaches such as Active Methodologies are known as having good potential to involve and motivate students. This article presents a systematic mapping aiming to identify current Educational Data Mining and Learning Analytics methods. Besides, we identify Active Methodologies’ application to mitigate dropout in Distance Learning. We evaluated 668 papers published from January 2015 to March 2020. The results indicate a growing application of Educational Data Mining and Learning Analytics to identify and mitigate students’ abandonment in Distance Learning. However, studies with Active Methodologies to minimize dropout and enhance student permanence are scarce. Some works suggest Active Methods as a possible complement of Learning Analytics in dropout.
Information Visualisation strategies can be applied in a variety of domains. In the context of temporal networks, i.e., networks in which interactions between individuals occur throughout time, efforts have been conducted to develop visual approaches that allow finding interaction patterns, anomalies, and other behaviours not previously perceived in the data. This paper presents two case studies involving real-world education networks from a primary school and a high school. For this purpose, we used the Massive Sequence View (MSV) layout with the Community-based Node Ordering (CNO) method, two well established approaches for visual analysis of temporal networks. Our results show that the identified patterns involving students/students and students/teachers represent important information to benefit and support decision making about school management and teaching strategies, especially those related to strategic group formation.
This paper presents a systematic literature review of the coordinated use of Learning Analytics and Computational Ontologies to support educators in the process of academic performance evaluation of students. The aim is to provide a general overview for researchers about the current state of this relationship between Learning Analytics and Ontologies, and how they have been applied in a coordinated way. We selected 31 of a total of 1230 studies related to the research questions. The retrieved studies were analyzed from two perspectives: first, we analyzed the approaches where researchers used Learning Analytics and Ontologies in a coordinated way to describe some Taxonomy of Educational Objectives; In the second perspective, we seek to identify which models or methods have been used as an analytical tool for educational data. The results of this review suggest that: 1) few studies consider that student interactions in the Learning Management System can represent students’ learning experiences; 2) most studies use ontologies in the context of learning object assessment to enable learning sequencing; 3) we did not identify methods of evaluation of academic performance guided by Taxonomies of Educational Objectives; and 4) no studies were identified that report the coordinated use of Learning Analytics and Computational Ontologies, in the context of academic performance monitoring. Thus, we identify future directions of research such as the proposal of a new model of evaluation of academic performance.