Learning Analytics and Its Paternalistic Influences

Proceedings from HCI International 2017, Vancouver, B.C.

22 Pages Posted: 17 Apr 2017 Last revised: 21 Apr 2017

See all articles by Kyle M. L. Jones

Kyle M. L. Jones

Indiana University-Indianapolis (IUPUI)

Date Written: April 12, 2017


Learning analytics is a technology that employs paternalistic nudging techniques and predictive measures. These techniques can limit student autonomy, may run counter to student interests and preferences, and do not always distribute benefits back to students–in fact some harms may actually accrue. The paper presents three cases of paternalism in learning analytics technologies, arguing that paternalism is an especially problematic concern for higher education institutions who espouse liberal education values. Three general recommendations are provided that work to promote student autonomy and choice making as a way to protect against risks to student academic freedom.

Keywords: Educational technology, learning analytics, ethics, autonomy, paternalism, student academic freedom, liberal education

JEL Classification: I23, L86

Suggested Citation

Jones, Kyle, Learning Analytics and Its Paternalistic Influences (April 12, 2017). Proceedings from HCI International 2017, Vancouver, B.C.. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2951918

Kyle Jones (Contact Author)

Indiana University-Indianapolis (IUPUI) ( email )

535 W. Michigan Street
Indianapolis, IN 46202-3103
United States

HOME PAGE: http://thecorkboard.org

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