Understanding how and how often students are interacting with online course material can provide big insights in how engaging a course is and how effectively the students will learn the material. It’s fairly simple to analyze student participation in courses on the CLE with two easily produced reports, the Course Participation report and the Logs.
Course Participation Report
The Course Participation report will give you a summary of how many actions, such as views or posts, were performed by which students in your course. For example, if you want to see how often a student posts to a forum or how many times a student views a page, this is the report you will want to take a look at. Here’s how to view the Course Participation report for a course in which you are enrolled as an Instructor:
- Find the Navigation block
- Click My Courses (or if you’re already on the course page, click Current Course)
- Click the Short Name of the course for which you are interested in seeing the report
- Click Reports
- Click Course Participation
The interface is fairly simple and you’re given a few options for filtering what data you receive in the report (for example, the particular Activity module, the time period, which CLE role, and which particular actions were taken). Once the appropriate parameters are set, click the Go button and the report will appear on the same page.
You can sort this list by first or last name or by the number of actions. You might want to sort by the number of actions if you quickly want to see the student with the most forum posts for an activity, for example. You can even send a message through the CLE to any or all selected students directly from this page.
The Logs report is helpful if you want to easily get data for one particular student on one or more activities. You can view the Logs report on the webpage or download it in Excel format, so you can do further analysis.
Finding the Logs report is similar to finding the Course Participation report. Just follow Steps 1 – 4 listed above, then click Logs. You can also find the Logs when you are within a given activity under the Settings block.
The interface is similar to the Course Participation report and requires you to filter the data you are interested in viewing. To generate a log, select any combination of group, student, date, activity, and actions, then click the “Get these logs” button. You can see what pages the student accessed, the time and date they accessed it, the IP address they came from, and their actions (view, add, update, delete).
Instructors can decide whether they want students to access their individual activity reports and view their contributions to the course, such as forum posts or assignment submissions. This can be toggled on and off through the Edit Settings on the main course page (Settings block > Course Administration > Edit Settings > Show activity reports).
As you can probably guess, tracking your students’ participation can be really helpful for ensuring student and course success. With a few clicks, you can determine which students have a greater probability of success in the course and which will need extra support, as well as which activities are the most engaging.