How Educators Use Data-Driven Decision-Making

Data is at the core of countless decisions made by teachers, schools and districts about teaching styles, curricula, student achievement and the resources they purchase to support educational performance.

Businesses in the edtech field need to understand the value of data for educators and administrators if they want to align their values with the needs and expectations of their clients. Ultimately, a strong grasp of this topic can help inform marketing efforts and increase the value of everything from a first contact with a prospect through detailed, in-person meetings with key stakeholders. With data-driven decision-making so important in the world of learning, both for K-12 and higher education, this is one topic every edtech marketer should take to heart.

data driven decisions

Why is data-driven decision-making important in education?

Data offers valuable insight into student performance, competency and areas of needed improvement.”

When properly collected and analyzed, data offers valuable insight into student performance, competency and areas of needed improvement, among many other factors, both by individual students and groups of them.

Educators use data to improve their own efforts as well as track student achievement. They draw on sources ranging from test scores to the data points provided by various forms of educational programs utilized in the classroom. American University highlighted how this strategy can inform teachers and allow them to make changes focused on improving student learning outcomes. Administrators take a similar approach at a higher level, looking for grade-, school- and district-level trends in data to recognize areas of strength and weakness, then make targeted and relevant changes.

Why is data-based decision-making important for students?

When education professionals make decisions based on the right data and analysis, they can improve outcomes for students and create more accessible pathways to success in an evidence-based and standardized way.

It’s important to note that there are many types of data used in the classroom and at higher levels, including both collected electronically and gathered more informally by experienced professionals. Data derived from an app used to share content and measure student response can be combined with a teacher’s personal observation of student performance to develop a personalized assignment or learning plan for a particularly difficult subject, for example. Better insight into students, from strengths and interests to areas for improvement, is facilitated by data.

How do teachers use data to improve the educational experience?

Teachers gather data from a variety of sources, then review and analyze it to create an educational experience that is more appealing to students on the individual and classroom levels. Sources are varied, and can range from cumulative files and test scores, as Edutopia pointed out, to metrics from edtech software used in the classroom or to support homework and projects outside of it.

Data allows teachers to identify some key factors that influence learning and take steps to improve them. Poor test performance throughout a class that otherwise does well with the curriculum can indicate poor test design, confusing instructions and other issues. An especially high rate of engagement with a specific learning module in a piece of edtech software can encourage further use and emphasis in the future.

Supporting and reaching teachers and administrators

Data-driven decision-making is a core concept for education professionals of all stripes. With an edtech product that offers access to metrics and analysis, your company can better connect with teachers and administrators by offering a resource that helps educate students and inform future changes to strategy. For help building the best possible connections with these professionals, get in touch with the experts at Agile.