Connecting dots for digital learning and teaching

Education Data and Evidence Framework

from Office of Educational Technology, U.S. Department of Education : 

Evidence Framework

evidence framework, education big dataChange happens big in technology and it happens fast. And when public money is being spent and students’ futures are at stake, it is crucial that changes also happen smart. Our new report, Expanding Evidence Approaches for Learning in a Digital World, calls for smart change by presenting educators, policymakers, and funders with an expanded view of evidence approaches and sources of data that can help them with decision-making about learning resources.

The report discusses the promise of sophisticated digital learning systems for collecting and analyzing very large amounts of fine-grained data (“big data”) as users interact with the systems. It proposes that this data can be used by developers and researchers to improve these learning systems and strive to discover more about how people learn. It discusses the potential of developing more sophisticated ways of measuring what learners know and adaptive systems that can personalize learners’ experiences.

Evidence Framework

The report describes an iterative R&D process, with rapid design cycles and built-in feedback loops—one familiar in industry but less so in education (however, the report provides numerous examples of applications in education). An iterative R&D process enables early-stage innovations to be rapidly deployed, widely adopted, and—through continuous improvement processes—refined and enhanced over time. This means that data collection and analysis can occur continuously and that users are integral to the improvement process.

The report encourages learning technology developers, researchers, and educators to collaborate with and learn from one another as a means of accelerating progress and ensuring innovation in education.

In the spirit of an iterative development process, we are posting this report for public comment. Does the report resonate with your view of the emerging digital learning landscape and the data? Do you have examples of evidence gathering methods that use emerging data? Are the recommendations the right ones for enabling progress? Do you have other thoughts and ideas on the topic of data, evidence and digital learning? We would like to hear from you!


The content of the report include the following chapters:

(download from here, or here: Expanding_Evidence_Approaches_DRAFT)

  • Chapter 1: Making Sure Learning Resources Promote Deeper Learning
  • Chapter 2: Building Adaptive Learning Systems That Support Personalized Learning
  • Chapter 3: Combining Data to Create Support Systems More Responsive to Student Needs
  • Chapter 4: Improving the Content and Process of Assessment with Technology
  • Chapter 5: Finding Appropriate Learning Resources and Making Informed Choices
  • Summary and Recommendations

Yes, data is the only hard evidence of what works in digital learning and the compass for personalized learning journey.



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3 Responses »


  1. What Does Web3.0 Mean to Education? | Classroom Aid
  2. How Most Ed-Tech Products Went Wrong | Classroom Aid
  3. Adaptive Learning – The Challenges and Developments | Classroom Aid

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“Tell me and I will forget, show me and I may remember, involve me and I will understand.” -------- Chinese Wisdom "Games are the most elevated form of investigation." -------- Albert Einstein
"I'm calling for investments in educational technology that will help create digital tutors that are as effective as personal tutors, educational software as compelling as the best video game," President Barack Obama said while touring a tech-focused Boston school (year 2011).
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