Friday, September 25, 2009

Action Analytics: Setting a National Agenda

I have just returned from three days at the first National Symposium on Action Analytics. In a short time, great strides were made in framing, shaping, and advancing this critical topic.

The event was co-sponsored by the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities and Capella University. This is the first time a major public university system and a for-profit university have collaborated on a venture such as this, seeking to attract thought leaders, practitioners, policy makers, and visionaries to frame a national agenda for advancing action analytics as an instrument and inititaive to support the nation's education, training, and workforce development imperatives.

The core planning and facilitaton team for the Symposium consisted of Dr. Linda Baer, Senior Vice Chancellor for Academic and Student Affairs, Minnesota State Colleges and universities; Dr, Michael Offerman, Vice Chairman of Capella Educational Company; Dr. Mark Milliron, Founder aqnd CEO of Catalyze Learning International; and Donald M. Norris, President of Strategic Initiatives, Inc.

The symposium was supported by two white papers, "Why Action Analytics for Higher Education?" and "Linking Analytics to Lifting out of Recession." The sessions consisted of a series of panels, presentations, and conversations about current best practices in analytics; what information, reports, and dashboards are needed; building analytics to support institutional and public policy; and building the next generation of educational technology tools to support action analytics. The final half day was spent discussing the issues relating to a national agenda for action analytics. This provided input to the core team who will prepare a draft white paper summarizing the need for and elements of a national agenda.

Future blogs will present the elements of the national agenda as they are framed, funded, and advanced.

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