A case study exploring video access by students

Wrangling and visualising data for measuring digital behaviour


  • Timna Garnett
  • Didy Button




learning design, learning analytics, digital behaviour


Every click made by a student is being captured by our learning platforms and integrated web-based tools. This store of data acts as, in its simplest form, part of an individual's digital behaviour with measurable points of interest. But how can this data give teachers an indication that our energy, time and potentially money spent making educational videos is worth the investment? Do-It-Yourself (DIY) videos are more commonly being made by teachers to replace written or face-to-face spoken content, provide an alternative instruction format or provide assessment feedback, to name just a few. This paper explores how we can help answer the most common question asked by teachers who undertake DIY video creation: are DIY educational videos being accessed by students? To answer this question, usage data generated by Moodle (student access point) and YouTube (video host) was collected. Simple analysis tools were employed to make sense of the typical log points generated by each system. Using a first year nursing subject as a case study, this project compared student access behaviour of pre-recorded one hour weekly video lectures. The results indicated an overall declining trend in viewing the video content online throughout the semester yet an increased video access when videos are presented in small segments assembled in YouTube playlists. An additional important outcome of this study was learning and sharing how to wrangle Moodle logs and YouTube Analytics data by non-statistical experts to quickly visualise video access. This information may ultimately support video creators to evaluate their videos, spend their time more efficiently when initially making videos, support decisions to change content or update curriculum, and to ultimately re-evaluate the role videos play in learning and teaching online environments.






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