Lines, Curves & Charts: The Power of Analytics in Education
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Brad Pitt-starred Hollywood Movie Moneyball highlighted the pre-eminent role of Analytics in big money Sports. It is an account of the Oakland Athletics Baseball Team's 2002 Season and General Manager Billy Beane's successful attempt in assembling a competitive team, with a small amount of money at his disposal, using the analytical skills of a young MITian.
Living in the ‘Information Age’, you cannot escape words like ‘Big Data’ and ‘Analytics’. If you aren’t in a related field, you may not have given it much thought either.
Analytics is the science of predicting an individual’s behaviour, using a large, related data bank. Statistics is used at the basic levels, with Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning (AIML) being harnessed at higher levels to extract even more information. For, Analytics leads to ‘Actionable’ knowledge, commonly known as ‘Intervention Plans’ and not mere ‘Post Mortems’.
Just as the permutations and combinations of the Four Bases (AGCT) comprising DNA are today recognized as the key to personalized healthcare, Educationists are on the lookout for the ‘Code of Learning’ and Analytics is the key to personalizing Education. Analytics helps hone in on a Student’s learning difficulties. Individualized Education Plans can then be designed to address these Learning Blocks. Analytics can predict a Student’s performance going ahead, quite like a quick Blood Test predicts the onset of Diabetes.
Education Analytics is offered by larger organizations like IBM and Microsoft, as well as niche players. Report Cards do not present the entire Class’ performance over a period of time and how a particular Student has fared in comparison, which is brought out by Cohort Analysis and Performance Swing Analysis. Analytics has such answers and following it up with Individualized Education Plans ensures that both Student performances and School reputations improve.
Analytics goes further and can reliably identify suitable careers based on known and unknown strengths that a Student possesses. This is possible by means of extreme data drill-downs over a long period of time.
A great example of Analytics in Education is GL Assessment’s CAT4 Examination Report, which could indicate important Learning Biases of each Student. CAT4 tests Students’ ability to link School Curriculum with what they observe in nature. A popular preparatory for International Benchmark Test (IBT) for Students across the globe, CAT4 is recommended by the Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA), Dubai. Any proposal by the School to increase Fees, add more Grades or add more Students, is assessed against the performance of their Students in these IBTs.
A Research has pegged the global Education Analytics Market at over USD 7.0 Billion by 2023, growing at 20per cent CAGR during 2018-2023. Clearly, a bright business opportunity exists in School Analytics Services.
The cost of Analytics has already beaten Moore’s Law, in the sense that Analytics Power has doubled every 2 years, with costs reducing to half each time. Humanity has progressed from the Stone Age into the current ‘Information Age’, with each ‘Age’ holding sway for shorter durations, as human progress accelerates greatly. Thought Leaders have already christened the coming age as the ‘Knowledge Age’ and it will be fuelled by Analytics.