Making Sense of Data from your LMS

Dr Mark Glynn - DCUJustin Doyle - DCU

A learning management system (LMS) contains a vast array of data. The challenge is accessing and interpreting this data appropriately. Appropriate is the key word: sharing appropriate data with the appropriate people at the most appropriate time. This talk explains the use of a Learning Record Store with an LMS to address this challenge. A Learning Record Store (LRS) is a data store that serve as a repository for learning records necessary for using the Tin Can API. LRSs can communicate learner data with other systems, such as LMSs, reporting tools, and other LRSs.

This project explains how we use an LRS to extract the following data on assignments within modules

Assignment title
Assignment description
Assignment opening time
Assignment closing time
Assignment grade (if the assignment has been graded)
Assignment category (taken from LMS gradebook)
Assignment category total (taken from LMS gradebook)

This data is then channelled into a series of reports to lecturers, course coordinators, Associate Deans for Teaching and Learning, Student Support Services and other relevant staff. For example a report is automatically issued to all lecturers across a programme containing the dates of all assignments as well as assignment types associated with a particular programme. This enables lecturers and course coordinators to establish a programme assessment strategy. Such a facility is vital to help monitor whether all programme and module learning outcomes are being assessed. Another example of a report is where a students grades in their continuous assessments are passed to our Student Support CRM enabling us to identify students at risk of non-completion as soon as the assignment is graded as opposed to waiting until the end of the semester when all results of continuous assessments and end of semester exams are inputted into the student record system.

The final example that we will illustrate is how we can extract data from our LMS and pass it to another LMS within another institution via the LRS, which has tremendous application at a time when we are encouraged as a sector to offer collaborative programmes across institutions