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How big data will haunt you forever: your high school transcript

09/09/2014
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Privacy issue with big data!!!!

Quartz

Excerpted from Learning with Big Data: The Future of Education by Viktor Mayer-Schönberger, Kenneth Cukier.

Arizona State University, like many colleges across the United States, has a problem with students who enter their freshman year ill prepared in math. Though the school offers remedial classes, one-third of students earn less than a C, a key predictor that they will leave before getting a degree. To improve the dismal situation, ASU turned to adaptive-learning software by Knewton, a prominent edtech company. The result: pass rates zipped up from 64% to 75% between 2009 and 2011, and dropout rates were cut in half.

But imagine the underside to this seeming success story. What if the data collected by the software never disappeared and the fact that one had needed to take remedial classes became part of a student’s permanent record, accessible decades later? Consider if the technical system made predictions that tried…

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2 Comments
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