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Data Management Practices in Academic Library Learning Analytics: A Critical Review

Briney, Kristin A. (2019) Data Management Practices in Academic Library Learning Analytics: A Critical Review. Journal of Librarianship and Scholarly Communication, 7 (1). Art. No. eP2268. ISSN 2162-3309. doi:10.7710/2162-3309.2268.

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Introduction: Data handling in library learning analytics plays a pivotal role in protecting patron privacy, yet the landscape of data management by librarians is poorly understood. Methods: This critical review examines data-handling practices from 54 learning analytics studies in academic libraries and compares them against the NISO Consensus Principles on User’s Digital Privacy in Library, Publisher, and Software-Provider Systems and data management best practices. Results: A number of the published research projects demonstrate inadequate data protection practices including incomplete anonymization, prolonged data retention, collection of a broad scope of sensitive information, lack of informed consent, and sharing of patron-identified information. Discussion: As with researchers more generally, libraries should improve their data management practices. No studies aligned with the NISO Principles in all evaluated areas, but several studies provide specific exemplars of good practice. Conclusion: Libraries can better protect patron privacy by improving data management practices in learning analytics research.

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Briney, Kristin A.0000-0003-1802-0184
Additional Information:© 2018 Briney. This open access article is distributed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License ( Received: 06/05/2018 Accepted: 01/03/2019. Published on 22 Feb 2019. The author thanks Dorothea Salo and Abigail Goben for their guidance in developing this research idea and for their helpful feedback on this article’s many drafts.
Subject Keywords:data management, libraries, data, privacy
Issue or Number:1
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20191029-101733846
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Usage Policy:This article is distributed under a CC BY 4.0 license.
ID Code:99525
Deposited By: Kristin Briney
Deposited On:29 Oct 2019 17:25
Last Modified:16 Nov 2021 17:47

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