Big Data, Privacy and Education Applications
22 Pages Posted: 10 Dec 2019
Date Written: November 15, 2019
Big data applications pose some of the most profound new media challenges to human rights, with particularly serious social, cultural and political implications for privacy. Increasingly aggressive marketing of these applications in K-12 education now exposes young people to new forms of privacy intrusions and escalates the risk of discrimination in schools. Nonetheless, schools are adopting educational technology (“edtech”) globally, often in reliance on promises of yet-to-be-proven benefits. Meanwhile, it is unclear whether educators are well advised of edtech’s related privacy and equality implications. Articles in professional education magazines, in which edtech is frequently marketed, represent one potential source of such information. This paper discusses the findings from our study of the developing discourse about edtech and big data in selected American and Canadian professional education magazines from 2013-2017. While these magazines reported on a wide range of risks and benefits of edtech, they incorporated disturbingly little coverage of its privacy implications.
Keywords: privacy, big data, education, teachers
JEL Classification: I20, I24, A39, K19
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