Understanding Definition and Benefits of Big Data in the Education Industry
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Big data is a field in which data scientists and engineers analyze, structure, use, and learn massive data that traditional software can not cope with. Extracting necessary information from large data sets helps industries predict tendencies, learn human behavior, and make better business decisions. Or, create new solutions to satisfy the demands of the modern world.
The origins of the term “big data” leave space for doubts and investigation. John Mashey, a computer scientist from Pennsylvania, is considered to be the father of the term “big data”, who in the mid-1990s talked about it at Silicon Graphics, an American company producing hardware and software up to 2009.
Key Benefits of Big Data Analytics in Education
Big data analysis enables professors to determine areas where students struggle or thrive, understand their individual needs, and thus develop strategies and assist with personalized education paths to ensure an efficient learning process.
Find out what is the difference between data science and big data analytics here!
How to measure data in the world?
Nowadays, any type of information can be kept in cloud storage and the amount of digital information is growing at unbelievable speed. It is estimated that by the year 2025, there will be 163 zettabytes of data. To note, one zettabyte equals 1 billion terabytes or 1 trillion gigabytes.
The rule of 3V: Volume, Velocity, Variety
Big data analytics takes specially designed methods and software to examine the constantly growing data. To analyze it, data scientists take into account its 3 basic properties:
- Volume – refers to the amount of data;
- Velocity – the speed at which data moves and is processed;
- Variety – refers to types and attributes of data.
History and evolution of Big Data in education
The disturbance around growing data and its structuring has begun at the beginning of the 21st century. It is difficult to announce an exact day when it was firstly used in Education. However, the exponential growth of online learning in the 2010s drew the attention of researchers to how learning analytics is used in education. International research conferences in 2000-2007 invoked interest in Educational Data Mining. Already in 2008, there was a separate conference dedicated to EDM in Canada. In 2011, there was established the International Educational Data Mining Society.
The definition of learning analytics was questioned because it had to reflect the current educational research and deliver the promise to optimize and improve learning. Thus, the first graduate program at learning analytics was launched in 2015 at Columbia University. The program ideally matched with EDM researches and offered graduates to learn analytics, big data analytics for education to drive more improvements with the help of technology.
How the current situation in the world influences education and what it has to do with Big Data?
Big Data seems to be an abstract concept for the majority of people, so how do we apply its merits and advantages in real life? The world is affected by the coronavirus pandemic. Education goes remotely. The traffic of online courses is growing exponentially. People google eLearning programs, pupils install software to do their homework and have it checked online. Video streaming software is practiced by schools to conduct lessons remotely. The power of a myriad of eLearning tools is transforming education right now. Later, data scientists will examine all the data collection on how this software was used, what problems users had to face, what their preferences were, how often or rare their attendance was, what tests they passed successfully, and what information typed in could tell about them. Big data scientists will learn our behavior. Results will go to universities and companies to make a larger impact on education.
The future of Big data and Education
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In the near future, transformation in education will be tremendously different from today. The educational system will revolutionize in the way it could tell students and schoolchildren which profession to choose, directing them to develop skills in Science or Humanities. Built on collected data and analytics, educational software will satisfy both learners’ and professors’ needs. The emergence of facial recognition and voice-based learning in the classroom will change the approach and speed of learning. Companies will hire a candidate for the position and base their decision on previously received data from Universities on the success and performance of the student.
Pupils will have all the chances to know things inside out without attending school lessons. It has already started today and a bright example is how people are earning their Master’s or Bachelor’s Degrees via eLearning and how universities actively promote departments of digital learning on their websites.
The use of big data in education together with Artificial Intelligence, gamification, and simulation will maximize the effectiveness of learning. Technology progress will transform our efforts to educate ourselves sufficiently and comprehensively to unimaginable new experiences.
Most efficient use of big data in education
What’s the real application of big data in education today? Let’s find out some of the most common examples of big data in education.
Big data analytics in the education sector can provide:
Measurement of students achievements
Demand for data scientists was estimated by IBM to be 28% in 2020. And it’s unstoppable. Big Data analytics remains on the wish list of the Education sphere as an advanced way to accumulate large amounts of structured and unstructured data.
Big data in the education sector helps with analyzing students’ achievements. Large amounts of data coming every day from eLearning resources gives meaningful insights into students’ performance, motivation and habits. It is much easier to review the efficiency of software or online courses nowadays with analytics at hand. Educators, universities, research institutions, and software engineers are becoming equipped with real-time results and statistical information. Big data makes them feel much more confident in
- personalizing education
- developing blended learning
- transforming assessment systems
- promoting life-long learning
Behavior detection and predictive modeling
In data mining, behavior detectors are especially automated models that define students’ behavior based on interaction logs. It means we could know when a student subverts the properties of the learning system to succeed without learning while playing an educational game, for instance. We could conduct text mining and analyze students’ writing and self-reflection, emotions via words and expressions.
Examining online learning behaviors of LMS or MOOCs leads educators to design better ways of learning. The mission of big data in education is to find out when entertainment captures attention more than task execution. It’s one of the reasons why gamification software has to be thoroughly investigated and analyzed so that it could match learning purposes correctly and accelerate.
Students’ behavior detection on practice
Imagine data engineers working at collecting and withdrawing necessary data with the help of special software. The next level of data analysis is under the responsibility of data scientists. They aim to solve the problem of decreased effectiveness and popularity of some eLearning applications. Big data scientists use certain methods, and apply mathematics and technology to define off-task behavior. What does it mean in terms of Big data and Education? They identify times and conditions when students sidetrack from the system. It can happen because of students’:
- carelessness – paying not enough attention to choosing the right answer, even if they know it
- “Without Thinking Fastidiously” behavior when interacting with software, learners miss intended learning tasks
- help acceptance or avoidance behavior. When students face challenges, software points at possible solutions, but students either accept and do necessary actions or not
- various “curriculum planning” behaviors that show when students are paused either because of the task or because of the teacher’s interventions
Thus, big data and behavior detection assist teachers in analyzing reasons for ineffectiveness. And, it also, helps find new ways for students to help them struggle with their learning goals.
Teachers’ assistance in driving improvements
Big data lends a helping hand to creating better education management systems. It creates conditions for developing digital literacy for teachers, who could provide better assessment, collect data, and evaluate the behaviors, skills, and performance of their students. Having the right tools and metrics in their hands, they could evaluate their work, improve the classroom environment and significantly increase learning opportunities.
Career path match and recruitment practices
Today, companies use technology to make recruitment more efficient. However, the problem is that data is preserved at different levels, and locally at different places. Companies and universities have their own private data sets on candidates’ skills, students’ performance, reviews, feedback on tests, and more.
Making centralized access to big data would help cooperate universities with employers and decrease the shortage of specialists in many fields, provide better employment opportunities for students and assist them in choosing a better career path.
Big data analytics in education have all the power to define students’ skills, and match them with their professional direction. Analytics will also help allocate resources of companies and universities to those departments, faculties, and domains that need improvements the most.
Development of personalized learning
With Big data, it becomes possible to define what technique is the most effective for each pupil. That’s wonderful when personalization in education helps upgrade students writing skills, and communicative abilities, or cope with tests in different subjects faster. Big data helps to design intelligent and interactive tutoring systems, adapted to learners’ personal needs and weaknesses. Creating enjoyable learning experiences via tailor-made digital solutions is now a reality and worth great attention from educators.
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Transformation of knowledge into narrow domains
Big Data in Education is not only about analyzing how people interact with software to improve ways of learning. Research materials, millions of media, and text files about certain topics are moving to cloud storage every day as well. Humanity replenishes Big Data with domain-specific information with the help of top-notch software solutions. Let’s take Astronomy as an example. Software solutions, like the solution for remote observation of space for the US astronomers, allow exploring space, saving unique data on space investigation. It is designed for sharing observations and learning from professionals. Gamification is another additional detail that makes the solution for the remote observation of space much more useful and interactive.
In the future, astronomers and astrophysicists could analyze the gathered and saved data to understand the nature of sky phenomena and make discoveries in the field. While educators can estimate how people treat gamification during space exploration and what can be improved to make astronomy studies special and captivating for people around the world.
Read also: predictive analytics for e-commerce use cases and IoT in logistics
Consider Inoxoft your trusted partner
Inoxoft is a company providing top-notch big data analytics services. Our main focus in Big data is to follow the trends and impact the market with big data-driven education software development and e-learning application development. Also, we have great skills in predictive analytics in big data.
So, if you’d like to be a step ahead of your competitors and make big data work for you – contact us and receive:
- Improved quality of e-learning and assessment
- Insights on learner’s performance, motivation, and habits
- Student’s behavior analytics based on software interaction
- Text mining to evaluate students’ skills, self-reflection, emotions, etc.
- Student enrollment and career direction analytics
- Student assistance possibilities in any queries via chatbots
Student surveys, texts, passed online tests, finished online courses and educational games can tell so much about what learners lack, how to adjust teaching methodologies to personal preferences, and provide new digital education to new generations.
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Big data in the education industry is the new trend, which makes education excel from the possibilities it gives to learners. With Big Data analytics today humanity can finally control the process of knowledge obtainment, find the possible gams and fill them in with appropriate solutions. Of course, there are benefits of data analytics in education with regard to the enhanced quality of studies. But there are also challenges of big data in education that still need to be addressed. All in all, time will tell. But from now on, the role of big data in the education sector is outstanding.