conference,  learning analytics

Learning Analytics 2011 is the place to be


(This man wants your data)

I'm pleased to say I've managed to get some funding to attend the first conference on Learning Analytics and Knowledge (LAK 2011), organised by George Siemens and the good folk at Athabasca. It's in Banff, Canada, Feb 27th to March 1st. Look at some of the people on the steering committee:

  • Erik Duval, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Belgium
  • David Wiley, Brigham Young University, US
  • Dave Cormier, University of Prince Edward Island, Canada
  • Tony Hirst, Open University, UK
  • Grainne Conole, Open University, UK
  • Dragan Gasevic, CSIS, Athabasca University, Canada
  • Simon Buckingham Shum, Knowledge Media Institute, UK
  • Caroline Haythornthwaite, University of British Columbia, Canada

I think this first conference will be quite small, but like the Sex Pistols gig at the 100 Club, in years to come more people will have claimed to have been here than it can physically accommodate. I think the interesting thing about Learning Analytics is it's one of those areas we think will be important, but we're not quite sure what it is yet, so there's room to explore. I'm not presenting at the conference, because I don't think I know enough about it, so hoping to learn more. The call for papers is closed, but if like me, you just want to find out what's going on, registration for attendance is still open.

While I'm broadcasting stuff, there are still fellowships available at the OU under the OLNET scheme for research relating to OERs, closing date is 14th Feb, if you feel this is your bag.

PS – it's bermuda shorts weather in Banff in March, right?



  • Scott Leslie

    @george not really, I expect it speaks for itself. Wish you luck in pursuing this Next Greatest Thing. Maybe next year’s can include the words “Mobile” “Emergent” and “Open” to broaden its hipness even further. Yours in snark, Scott

  • George Siemens

    Scott, You’re kind of yipping at the edges – and we’ve had similar exchanges a few times where you offer a snark comment and then don’t engage to explore in greater detail. My view: contribute/create or effectively critique. Simply complaining that a concept or idea is attempting to be “next greatest thing” and trying to be “hip” doesn’t help much. Obviously you have a right to randomly vent. I’m just not sure what you gain if you don’t back up glib statements. You don’t like the concept learning analytics? No problem – tear it apart. Why is it a bad idea? What is wrong with it? Show others why it sucks. Provide something that can be discussed or debated.

  • Martin

    BTW if you two want to air your canadian laundry don’t use my blog 😉
    More seriously, I have sympathies both sides – I’m not sure if LA is just the next label, or something significant. It sounds sexy and modern so is subject to some of the accusations of the former, but hey, if we as academics don’t think there’s any value pedagogically in all the data available then it’ll be a service Blackboard sell to us. So my feeling is this is a fledgling area we could direct, and so I’m keen to learn more. Fair enough?

  • Scott Leslie

    George, that’s right, yip yip. I regret posting this because I have NO energy to engage on it, and really, really, really have been trying very hard not to make any comments since I first saw this announced early in 2010. I mean REALLY hard, because that comment above doesn’t even start to capture the amount of bullshit this smells like to me. But I am sure it will be a smashing success, a new field will have been invented, and my suspicions that there is no ‘there there’ even more unfounded. History will surely side with you George, of that I have little doubt.

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