5. Ethical and privacy issues Just as anything else that is related to online environment, LA is also facing some ethical and privacy challenges.
Gradient.com (2017) claims that the collection of students data must be consented and justified. According to the source, currently there are no standard procedures that report on data collection. Therefore, it is necessary to define the rights of the students and the responsibilities that faculties hold while using Learning Analytics. Baker (2016) also talks about the privacy concerns when it comes to LA: “There are reasons for concern when student data may be used for marketing or may be disclosed unnecessarily” (p. 5) He believes that to overcome this challenge, the educational institutions need to ensure that students data is shared only with the reliable commercial and nonprofit organisations, that protect privacy but at the same time do not prevent learners from having their access to a personalized education system.
Similarly, Campbell et al. (2007) also explores the use of data for non educational purposes. They give an example of using student-related data with the fund-raising activities.
In general, ethical and privacy challenges in LA need to be carefully examined. Santos et al. (2012) made a study with the learners and their main outcome was that the students do not like to be tracked outside the education environment, however, as long as it stays inside and the privacy concerns are covered really well, they do not mind to be trackedGenerally speaking, the review of the challenges in Learning Analytics show that there are some aspects that need to be taken into consideration before using this concept in the higher education institutions. Data tracking, data collection, technological challenge, optimised learning environment and ethical issues need to be covered and analysed before Learning Analytics is being brought to the education process.