Unizin News

UF COJ Newsroom

News releases and Unizin project updates involving UF faculty and staff are highlighted below.

Unizin Virtual Summit 2024

April 2-4, 2024

The 2024 Virtual Summit featured several UF presenters across its three tracks: AI and the Future of Teaching and Learning, Being Student-centered: Implementing Tools, Platforms, and Consortia to Support Student Success, & Data in Action.

The abstracts for the presentations including UF-affiliated personnel are below:

  • Keynote Panel: "AI & the Student Experience: Challenges and Opportunities" with Dr. Alexandra Bitton-Bailey (UF), Amy Goodburn (UNL), Stuart Selber (PSU), & Tom Andriola (UCI) – AI is impacting nearly every area of our institutions. This panel discussion will provide a multitude of perspectives on AI as it relates to the student experience, ranging from policy, technology, faculty development, teaching and learning. 
  • “A New Activity Mart for Increasing Student Success” by Dr. Minh Pham (UF), Dr. Jose Silva-Lugo (UF), Dr. Heather Maness (UF), Sara Bolf (Unizin), and Kyle Unruh (Unizin) – Building on the recent Taskforce Mart - Level 1 Aggregated data mart (student’s performance and activities in a course on a weekly basis), UF collaborated with the Unizin DSS team to identify additional metrics and efficient code to generate helpful insights into enhancing student success.
  • “Stepping Stones Pilot Evaluation and Updates” by Drs. Christina Bifulco (Rutgers), Heather Maness (UF), Lauren Marsh (Minnesota) – After the Faculty Development subcommittee released “Stepping Stones: A Faculty Development Curriculum for Learning Analytics Use,” 6 institutions piloted the curriculum and offered feedback. We’ll share what we learned and preview version 2, so you can leverage these consortia resources and empower instructors to use course data for student success!

Recordings of the presentation are available on the Unizin Summit 2024 YouTube Channel.

Learning Analytics Community of Practice Presentation - SLO Dashboard

March 1, 2024

Dr. Maria Leite (Director of Academic Assessment) and Ulrich Adegbola (Associate Director of Institutional Planning and Research) shared details on the development of UF’s SLO Dashboard at the March LA CoP meeting. They were a part of a panel presentation showcasing use cases leveraging Canvas’ Outcomes feature in accreditation reporting and continuous quality improvement efforts.

Learning Analytics Community of Practice Presentation - My Learning Analytics (MyLA)

April 14, 2023

Dr. Heather Maness and Andrew McDonald participated at the April LA CoP meeting as a part of a panel presentation on Adoption of MyLA at institutions in the Unizin Consortium: Opportunities and Challenges. MyLA is a student-facing learning analytics dashboard and was first piloted at UF in 2022 (IRB study #202102061). Initial findings show similar rates of adoption as the University of Michigan (creators of MyLA), with usage at approximately a third of the students. The majority of student respondents found the data helpful for planning their course activity, studying, and improving their confidence that they understood the material.

Learning Analytics Community of Practice Presentation - NLP

December 16, 2022

Dr. Aaron Thomas presented at the monthly LA CoP meeting. His topic of presentation was on Natural Language Processing to evaluate student text documents and how to leverage text mining to inform curricular planning and development across a large university.

Faculty Development Subcommittee Releases New Resources

November 2022

After years of work, this working group released 2 new resources related to learning analytics. 

  1. Structured Conversations with Faculty about Learning Analytics
  2. Stepping Stones: A Faculty Development Curriculum for Learning Analytics Use

The Structured Conversations initiative was launched to gather perspectives from classroom practitioners about how they would like to use learning data in support of academic achievement. UF was one of the pilot participating institutions. Thematic findings from all institutions were then used to inform the content and structure of the Stepping Stones curriculum. The protocol and related resources for conducting a similar activity was made available to allow other institutions to replicate and extend this work.

The Stepping Stones curriculum is a cross-institutional effort to prepare faculty to use learning analytics data ethically, effectively, and equitably. Materials were added to Canvas Commons to provide starter workshop resources for a variety of audiences, goals, modalities, and outcomes. CITT will pilot this curriculum with UF instructors and staff in Spring 2023.

Unizin Summit 2022

April 26-28, 2022

The annual Unizin Summit was held online once again this year. Overall, 583 registrants representing 62 institutions participated. Presentation tracks included Uniquely Unizin, Digital Learning Data Ethics, Policy and Governance, as well as Informed Research and Decisions Through Applied Learning Analytics. Three members of the University of Florida community presented.

  1. Alex Bitton-Bailey, Ph.D.
    Leveraging Learning Data
  2. Andrew McDonald
    Implementing Row Level Security in the Unizin Data Platform
  3. Aaron Thomas, Ph.D.
    Using Analytics to Optimize Student Success

Recordings of the presentation are available on the Unizin Summit 2022 YouTube Channel.

Student Success and Analytics Update

February 4, 2022

UFIT’s Dr. Aaron Thomas participated in the Unizin Learning Analytics Student Engagement Metrics panel.  Hosted by the University of Nebraska, a member institution of the Unizin Consortium, Dr. Thomas was one of three panelists focused on educational data mining and how to route students’ services to maximize efficacy. Questions about the panel discussion may be emailed to Dr. Thomas (aothomas@ufl.edu).

Unizin Summit 2021

April 21-22, 2021

The 2021 Unizin Summit was fully online this year in response to COVID-19 restrictions. Thirty-four UF faculty and staff joined 600+ colleagues from 63 institutions representing 28 states and eight countries. The focus of this year’s Summit was on using learning analytics to improve the teaching and learning experience for faculty and students, and addressing the ethical concerns and approach of using student data.

Doug Johnson, UFIT Manager of Digital Teaching & Learning Initiatives, was part of the team (along with representatives from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Ohio State, and Oregon State) that presented on Guiding Principles for the Application of Learning Analytics. The presentation was based on the results of two years of work developing guiding principles and ethical guidelines for engaging in learning analytics work. The principles were established through extensive consultation with Unizin user groups, representatives of more than a dozen institutions, and input from Unizin leadership. The principles are approved by Unizin’s Board of Directors and are now offered as guidance (not mandates) to member institutions. Many of the presentations from this year’s event are available on YouTube.

UFIT Hosting a Unizin Event on Learning Analytics

Tracey Gale for UFIT Update

May 16, 2019 

Read more about the event to advance learning analytics in higher education.

UF signs on to help create digital education ecosystem

University of Florida News

June 11, 2014

Read more about UF’s charter membership in the new Unizin consortium.