Institutional programs and third-party vendors provide an expanding number of instructional tools and services that generate copious amounts of learning data. These data can be combined and shared to improve learning and increase student success, but these opportunities complicate the privacy landscape. Higher education may need new and perhaps more nuanced practices and policies concerning learning data usage and privacy. Although the answers are far from clear, institutions should initiate discussions and governance conversations if they haven't already done so—the only real mistake is to do nothing.
The 7 Things You Should Know About... series from the EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative (ELI) provides concise information on emerging learning technologies. Each brief focuses on a single technology and describes what it is, where it is going, and why it matters to teaching and learning. Use these briefs for a no-jargon, quick overview of a topic and share them with time-pressed colleagues.
In addition to the 7 Things briefs, you may find other ELI resources useful in addressing teaching, learning, and technology issues at your institution. To learn more, please visit the ELI Resources page.