What I’m reading

Three challenges of big data according to Eynon:

  1. Ethics – privacy, informed consent, protection of harm. Example of student registration: social implications of telling students if they are likely to drop out (according to learner analytics). Makes it a self-fulfilling prophecy?
  2. Kindsof research – the availability of data biases in the types of research we carry out, the questions we can ask. Can advances in open data help with this?
  3. Inequality – how big data reinforces and exacerbates social and educational inequalities e.g. tracking only those in a specific socio-economic bracket. Digital divide, yes, but doesn’t it also work the other way round – social inequalities mean that some people are better equipped to avoid surveillance via big data?


Eynon, R. (2013). The rise of Big Data: what does it mean for education, technology, and media research? Learning, Media and Technology, 38(3), 237-240. Doi: 10.1080/17439884.2013.771783

March 12, 2017 at 12:16PM
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