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Top 5 Interesting Big Data Applications in Education [2024]

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25th Aug, 2022
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Top 5 Interesting Big Data Applications in Education [2024]

Today everyone is concern to know what is Big Data? as Big Data has changed the way the world used to look at the information. With so much information being generated every second, data scientists are always on their toes to use it to their benefit. Apart from corporates analyzing this data to enhance their business decisions, Big Data is also utilized in the education sector.

Modern institutions use their student data to understand the educational experience of students. This, in turn, helps teachers to educate students better. Big Data is also used for modifying the education system so that students are offered a wholesome learning plan.

Big data is the state-of-the-art technique to collect, allocate, accomplish and discover huge datasets. It uses larger-sized datasets. It uses different patterns which predict data. Big data and education are quite related. This is because educational big data presents several applications that facilitate teaching innovation, educational administration, and research management.

The illustrative examples of the applications focused on using big data in education are student academic performance forecasts, employment endorsement, and monetary support for low-income students. Various empirical studies have demonstrated that student performance can be predicted in the courses during the following term. Currently, predictive research for higher education has become an appealing domain of study because it allows student behaviour prediction.

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In this article, we will take a closer look at the Big Data applications in education.

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Big Data Applications in Education

As companies handle a lot of data related to their employees, finances, partner corporations and customers, educational institutions also have to deal with student data. As thousands of students enrol in several institutes every year in a variety of courses, a humungous amount of data is generated. The student data consists of course details, enrollment year, student ID, exam grades and marks obtained in individual subjects.

Analyzing this data can be extremely beneficial for nurturing their careers. Let us now understand the Big Data applications in education.

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1. Enhancing Student Results

The most common methods of analyzing a student’s performance are by their grades obtained in exams, projects and assignments. But all these grades can be accumulated to observe a unique data trail left by the student throughout their lives.

Analyzing these data trails will help educators to understand the behaviour and performance of students. With Big Data, it is possible to monitor their actions, such as: 

  • Response time for exam questions
  • Sources they choose to educate themselves 
  • Questions they skip
  • Questions they have answered successfully 

The real-time analysis will help in providing students with much more enhanced feedback on their performance. The feedback can significantly improve results. This is because students will be able to understand the areas they have aced and where they lag behind.

Test results aren’t the only indicators of students’ success. The combination of big data and education helps teachers evaluate the time students require to answer a question. Also, they can discern what kinds of questions trouble the students.

Big data helps to compare the preparation process among students. Teachers can recognize the source types the successful students utilize. Accordingly, they can advise identical preparation approaches to the whole class.

Presently, students’ only performance measurement indices are the answers to their exams and assignments. But, in their lifetime, each student creates an exceptional data trail. Big data helps analyse this data trail in real-time. Consequently, it will provide an improved understanding of the student’s behaviours and helps set up an optimal learning environment.

Using big data in the education sector allows anyone to monitor student activities like the time they need to answer a question, sources they use for examination preparation, which questions they skip, etc. All these and other similar questions can be automatically answered and provide instant feedback to students.

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2. A better Grading System

Big Data helps educators to track the performance of students. The analysis helps in understanding the performance of an individual and a collective level. The statistical analysis of individual grades will help educators to understand the areas of interest among students. The grading system can be enhanced to highlight the key areas where the student has excelled.

This system will also allow teachers to give valuable feedback to students and assist them in choosing the right career path. For example, Ashford School in the U.K. has implemented big data tools, such as Socrative, Nearpod and Classroom Monitor for analyzing their students. These applications help them to observe the performance and behaviour of students in real-time. 

The institute has been able to enhance their students’ performances and provide better learning solutions to them.

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Big data education helps institutions track student performance over several domains at individual and collective levels. Subsequently, it lets them improve corresponding solutions to facilitate students’ career growth.

Statistical assessment of students’ grades in different subjects can provide them with better guidance, and more effective study plans can be implemented. Depending on their performance in specific subjects and their interest, teachers can direct them to a suitable career path. Moreover, big data in education helps them to discern factors affecting an individual student’s performance and derive effective solutions using analytics.

3. Gaining Attention

Yes, you read that right! One of the most interesting and useful Big Data applications in education is the process of gaining a student’s attention. No matter how interesting the lecture is, there will always be some inattentive students who are busy looking at their phones or at others. But a lecture can only be effective if everyone paid attention.

Big Data experts have planned to use biometric data of students, such as heart rate, facial expressions and objects they touch during the lecture. This information can be captured via a camera on the ceiling or a device resembling a smartwatch. This data can be used for analyzing how attentive each student is. 

After sending the data back to the teacher, he or she can take the necessary steps to regain the students’ attention.

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4. Customized Programs

Educators can create customized programs for students based on their grades and after understanding their attention span. Also, students can be offered blended learning that includes opportunities for offline and online learning. Through customized programs, students can access the study material online along with lectures. They can study at their own pace.

Big data education allows the creation of customised programs for each student irrespective of the number of students in universities and colleges. For that, big data uses “blended learning”, i.e. a combination of offline and online learning. Consequently, the students get the opportunity to follow those classes they are interested in and study at their pace while still retaining the option for offline guidance.

These modern programs will also let students seek guidance from their professors. This form of blended learning is offered around the world through MOOCs. For example, the Machine Learning class at Stanford taught by Andrew Ng was attended by approximately 400 students. But when this class was offered online on Coursera, more than 100,000 students participated.

As a result, more students gained the concepts and found the study material useful, which was not the case for the Standard offline class.

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5. Reducing The Number of Dropouts

Big Data applications in education also include curbing the number of students who drop out of schools and colleges. Big Data can be used for performing predictive analysis for understanding how students might perform in the near future. This analysis will look at the performance of students throughout the year, and predict if they might drop out.

Such an analysis will also help the institute authorities to execute a scenario analysis on a particular course before it is introduced. This will vastly help teachers to guide their students towards the course that will suit them the best.

With improvement in student results, the dropout rates will also decrease. The prevalence of big data in education helps educational institutions to use predictive analytics on all the collected data. Consequently, it gives them enough insights into future student performance.  These predictions can also allow the implementation of scenario analysis on a specific course before it is presented in the curriculum; thus, it minimises the trial-and-error occurrences.

Big data also helps to supervise how students perform in the job market after their studies. This will assist future students in selecting the appropriate course and college.

To reduce the number of dropouts, big data helps tutors determine:

  • How many students provided late project submissions?
  • How’s the class attendance, and how is it comparable to other courses?
  • What’s the drop-out rate for a particular course?
  • What’s a course’s drop rate compared to previous years?

All such information helps tutors and educational institutions to discern the exact reasons for dropouts. Accordingly, they can provide better assistance with academic writing or any other challenging facets of learning. Furthermore, big data helps them update the course programs to make them more captivating.

Big Data is so powerful that it is also being used for analyzing how students will perform after college or university – when they are employed in a firm.

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Conclusion

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Big Data applications in education have revolutionized the sector. Educational institutes are using Big Data to screen applicants, deciding who will be a good fit for the institute and the ones who might not make it. This has helped institutes all over the world to reduce the time spent on the selection process. Big Data is also being used while recruiting teachers.  

If you are interested to know more about Big Data, check out our Advanced Certificate Programme in Big Data from IIIT Bangalore.

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Rohit Sharma

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Rohit Sharma is the Program Director for the UpGrad-IIIT Bangalore, PG Diploma Data Analytics Program.
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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

11. What is the use of Big Data in education?

With the implementa ion of Big Data in education, everything has become very accessible. Professors can use Big Data analysis to investigate more pain-areas of students to identify their struggles and understand the individual student’s requirements. Furthermore, students can also select their education path using Big Data. After introducing Big Data analysis, traditional in-person methods have taken a back seat. An added advantage of using Big Data gives students the privilege to choose or pursue academic experiences that align with their interests. This results in magnifying future career success for students and enhancing their potential.

22. What are the limitations of Big Data in education?

Big data has some gruesome challenges in the education sector, which is also time-consuming. Lack of support from teachers and mentors leads to bigger hurdles. As it is clear, Big Data analytics has plenty of opportunities, and for institutions to adapt and thrive through challenges could be a difficult task to keep up. The next challenge of Big Data applications in education is to ensure flexible data flow. In many institutions, the lack of Internet connectivity and poor network obstruct the process of data systems. Poor quality could lead to incorrect data followed by counterproductive results, and using them for education could be a true disadvantage for students.

33. What is the future of Big Data in the education sector?

It goes without saying that the education sector will witness a huge transformation in the coming years. Plus, with the innovation that Big Data will project in the future, students will be able to choose the profession that will align with their career aspirations. Learners and professionals can equally benefit from the data fetched from Big Data analytics. Big data’s requirement in the future will introduce students to voice-based learning, facial recognition, and fingerprint authentication, which will create room for effective studies. Big Data is the need of the hour, and therefore, it’s safe to consider the future with Big Data in education will evolve.

4What is the use of Big Data in education?

With the implementa ion of Big Data in education, everything has become very accessible. Professors can use Big Data analysis to investigate more pain-areas of students to identify their struggles and understand the individual student’s requirements. Furthermore, students can also select their education path using Big Data. After introducing Big Data analysis, traditional in-person methods have taken a back seat. An added advantage of using Big Data gives students the privilege to choose or pursue academic experiences that align with their interests. This results in magnifying future career success for students and enhancing their potential.

5What are the limitations of Big Data in education?

Big data has some gruesome challenges in the education sector, which is also time-consuming. Lack of support from teachers and mentors leads to bigger hurdles. As it is clear, Big Data analytics has plenty of opportunities, and for institutions to adapt and thrive through challenges could be a difficult task to keep up. The next challenge of Big Data applications in education is to ensure flexible data flow. In many institutions, the lack of Internet connectivity and poor network obstruct the process of data systems. Poor quality could lead to incorrect data followed by counterproductive results, and using them for education could be a true disadvantage for students.

6What is the future of Big Data in the education sector?

It goes without saying that the education sector will witness a huge transformation in the coming years. Plus, with the innovation that Big Data will project in the future, students will be able to choose the profession that will align with their career aspirations. Learners and professionals can equally benefit from the data fetched from Big Data analytics. Big data’s requirement in the future will introduce students to voice-based learning, facial recognition, and fingerprint authentication, which will create room for effective studies. Big Data is the need of the hour, and therefore, it’s safe to consider the future with Big Data in education will evolve.

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