Building Blocks for College Completion: Learning Analytics


Six projects awarded grants by Next Generation Learning Challenges (NGLC) in its first funding wave, “Building Blocks for College Completion,” sought to develop specific tools for learning analytics and then scale them at other institutions. The goal of the NGLC funding was to improve student success, particularly within high-enrollment, low-success developmental and/or general education courses, by increasing the quantity, quality, and timeliness of data available to students, instructors, and advisors. The grant recipients focused on tool development and support for adoption at multiple institutions. They worked to improve the utility of the tools and enable other institutions to more easily adopt them. They also worked to engage administrators, faculty, and students at multiple institutions in using their learning analytics tools to understand students’ progress in courses and degree programs and take action based on that understanding.

Reaching thousands of students, the grant recipients’ efforts point to promising strategies for increasing the use and the effectiveness of learning analytics solutions. Their efforts also indicate where further work is needed to advance the field. Based on the experiences of the six grant recipients, the report concludes with suggestions for future development and adoption of learning analytics, included as primer questions and a resource list.

NGLC accelerates educational innovation through applied technology to dramatically improve college readiness and completion in the United States. To learn more about NGLC and the grantees it supports, visit

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