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Canadian Universities Using Desire2Learn to Track Learning Outcomes in $6 Million Research Project

The University of Guelph in Ontario, Canada, is leading a consortium with the University of Waterloo, Wilfrid Laurier University, McMaster University and Mohawk College in a research effort to link pedagogy with learning outcomes. Researchers will use the Desire2Learn (D2L) learning platform's predictive analytics capabilities to determine the effectiveness of assessment tools on specific subjects and develop a curriculum that results in greater student success.

In 2012, U of G became the first Canadian university to establish across-the-board learning outcomes for all degree programs and specializations. Now, the pedagogy research project aims to help schools track and report on learning outcomes across programs over time. The project is funded by a $6 million grant from the Productivity and Innovation Fund within Canada's Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities.

"Gaining a better understanding of the student learning experience through empirical data is now an important and even necessary area of research," said Maureen Mancuso, provost and vice president (academic) at the University of Guelph, in a prepared statement. "We hope to shed light on what pedagogy and assessment tools educators can use to help students understand key learning concepts and guide them towards better outcomes. D2L is a key partner in this study because its integrated learning platform provides researchers with the quantifiable data necessary for evaluation."

About the Author

About the author: Rhea Kelly is executive editor for Campus Technology. She can be reached at rkelly@1105media.com.

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