at the 8th International Leaning Analytics & Knowledge Conference (Time: Tue 6 March 2018 9am-12:30pm)

This half-day workshop aims to support higher education institutions to develop learning analytics (LA) policies that are context-based and evidence-based. The workshop comprises two sessions. The first session will include a number of presentations to introduce the SHEILA policy framework developed by a cross-European project and research findings that have informed this framework. The second session will invite participants to take part in small groups to reflect on the state of LA adoption in their institutional contexts, and use the SHEILA policy framework to draft an institutional policy that considers key action points for LA adoption and addresses identified challenges. The contribution of the workshop is to increase the scalability and sustainability of LA through policy development. .

Workshop objectives

1) Participants will discuss and critically reflect on the key action points to take in a systematic adoption of LA, and gain understanding of the potential challenges.

2) Participants will be able to use the SHEILA policy framework to develop a draft of an institutional LA policy that considers LA-related actions and challenges in their institutional contexts.


The workshop will consist of two main activities – presentations and discussion groups. In the first part of the workshop (1 hour), we will present findings of surveys and focus groups that have been administered to teaching staff and students in four higher education institutions in Europe to understand primary stakeholders’ expectations and concerns regarding LA. The first part will also include the presentation of the SHEILA policy framework. The second part of the workshop (2 hours) will engage participants with discussions around the state of adoption of LA in their own institutional contexts, and required policies to ensure effective and responsible implementation. The workshop initiators will use the SHEILA policy framework to guide the discussion process.

Target group

The half-day workshop will be open for anyone interested in institutional policy and strategic planning for LA, particularly those in the following roles in their institutions: policy makers, senior managers and decision makers, LA practitioners and researchers, LA project leaders, data protection and system officers, Information and Technology officers, and academic and student representatives.

Workshop organisers

Yi-Shan Tsai

Yi-Shan Tsai is a research associate in the Centre for Research in Digital Education in the Moray House School of Education at the University of Edinburgh. She holds a PhD and an MPhil degree in Education from the University of Cambridge. She is a co-investigator of a cross-European project – SHEILA (Supporting Higher Education to Integrate Learning Analytics) and a member of the Learning Analytics Policy Task Group at the University of Edinburgh. Her current research focuses on policy and strategy formation for learning analytics in higher education. She has facilitated a number of workshops across a broad range of topics, using visualised methods to guide discussions.

Dragan Gašević

Dragan Gasevic is a Professor and the Sir Tim O’Shea Chair in Learning Analytics and Informatics in the Moray House School of Education and the School of Informatics at the University of Edinburgh. He is a co-founder and the immediate past president (2015-2017) of the Society for Learning Analytics Research (SoLAR). A computer scientist by training and skills, Dragan considers himself a learning analyst who develops computational methods that can shape next-generation learning technologies and advance our understanding of self-regulated and social learning. Dragan had a pleasure to serve as a founding program co-chair of the International Conference on Learning Analytics & Knowledge (LAK) in 2011 and 2012 and the Learning Analytics Summer Institute in 2013 and 2014, and as the general chair of LAK’16. He also served a founding editor of the Journal of Learning Analytics (2013-2017), is a (co-)author of numerous research papers and books, a frequent keynote speaker, and a organizer of numerous workshops and tutorials at different conferences.

Maren Scheffel

Maren Scheffel is an assistant professor at the Welten Institute (Research Center for Learning, Teaching and Technology) of the Open University of the Netherlands. She holds an MA degree in Computational Linguistics and a PhD degree in Educational Sciences. She previously worked at the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Information Technology (FIT) focussing on aspects related to technology-enhanced learning and was also involved in managing the ROLE project. Since 2014 she has been working at the Welten Institute where she was involved in the management as well as the research for the LACE project and now contributes to the SHEILA project as well as to other European projects. During her PhD project she developed the Evaluation Framework for Learning Analytics (EFLA) and now continues research related to the evaluation of learning analytics tools. She is the vice chair of SURF SIG Learning Analytics.