On June 5, 2018, our SHEILA project consortium successfully organised a one-day conference on supporting higher education to integrate learning analytics. The conference took place in the House of Dutch Provinces in Brussels, Belgium.

The day was opened by Dragan Gašević who introduced the audience to the project and the methodology, i.e. involving a diverse set of stakeholders throughout the project, of creating the SHEILA policy framework.

The different stakeholder perspectives were then presented by different members of the consortium. Yi-Shan Tsai started with the senior management and institutional perspective that was based on interviews with HEI managers. The student perspective was covered by Alexander Whitelock-Wainwright and Pedro Manuel Moreno Marcos. Their presentation was based on the student survey and the student focus groups that had been conducted. Maren Scheffel and Kairit Tammets then continued with the teacher perspective that was also backed up by surveys and focus groups. The findings session was concluded by Hendrik Drachsler who presented the results of a group concept mapping study with learning analytics experts.

The different perspectives were also taken into account during the first panel of the conference that was moderated by Carlos Delgado Kloos. The overarching topic of the panel was given as „Capacity development of LA implementation and adoption“. The four panelists were Anne Boyer (Professor of Computer Science, Université de Lorraine), Brian Green (Deputy Associate Principal, University of Strathclyde), Carmen Mazijn (Erasmus Student Network), and Riina Vuorikari (Joint Research Centre, European Commission). After first given insights into their own points of view, the panelist also answered questions from the audience.

Blaženka Divjak, Minister of Science and Education of the Government of Croatia held the keynote of the day. Her talk dealt with a broad view on the topic of LA policies and covered issues such as: the challenge of reliability of self-reporting provided by senior managers to benchmark ICT readiness in higher education; the disconnect between policy 1.0 and technology 4.0; linear and detail planning does not work anymore for the present development of technologies and changes; and the fact that LA tools should be used as a tool as well as a strategic decision for higher education.

After a lunch break that saw a continued and lively discussion, the participants were given the opportunity to work with the SHEILA policy framework in interactive breakout sessions.

Finally, Pedro José Muñoz Merino moderated the second panel of the day about practical issues in the implementation of learning analytics and steps forward. The different perspectives this time were offered by Tobias Ley (ERA CHair Professor of Learning Analytics and Education Innovation, Tallinn University), Maria Kelo (Director of European Association for Quality Assurance in Higher Education) and Barbara Wasson (Director of the Centre for the Science of learning / Technology, University of Bergen).

The slides used in the findings session are available via slideshare. In addition, we have published several executive summaries about the project’s results so far. The first one covers the challenges connected to the adoption of LA in higher education, the second one deals with the state of LA in Europe, and the third and newest one presents the teacher and student perspectives on LA.

If you would like to take a look at the different sessions yourself, you can do so as all sessions in the plenary room were recored and are now available online.