Quantified Self

What is Quantified Self?

Quantified self describes the phenomenon of consumers being able to closely track data that is relevant to their daily activities through the use of technology. The emergence of wearable devices on the market such as watches, wristbands, and necklaces that are designed to automatically collect data are helping people manage their fitness, sleep cycles, and eating habits. Mobile apps also share a central role in this idea by providing easy-to-read dashboards for consumers to view and analyze their personal metrics. Empowered by these insights, many individuals now rely on these technologies to improve their lifestyle and health. Today’s apps not only track where a person goes, what they do, and how much time they spend doing it, but now what their aspirations are and when those can be accomplished. Novel devices, too, are enabling people to track their lives automatically, such as the Memoto, a camera worn around the neck that is designed to capture an image every half minute. As more people rely on their mobile devices to monitor their daily activities, data is becoming a larger part of everyday life.

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(1) How might this technology be relevant to the educational sector you know best?

  • If we now take these employees and put them in the role of a parent, it becomes obvious that the same mindset will be used in the upbringing of children. Some experts already expect this new generation of parents turning from so called helicopter parents to drone parents. Again, the future is already here in the form of edtech startups like ClassDojo.
    ClassDojo is in its core a behaviour management platform for teachers. They can allocate points for good behaviour, children can keep track of their performance through their smartphones and tablets. Needless to say, so can their parents. In a scenario like this the question “What happened in school?” will be obsolete as the parents know exactly what happened when and why before their children are back at home. No more excuses.
    Teachers keep track of what they teach when, which student engaged when, what homework is due, which material needs to be prepared. All hosted in the cloud, accessible 24/7 from any device. No more excuses.
    http://www.uat.edu/academics/The_Ability_to_Think_Abstractly.aspx- jmorrison jmorrison Apr 1, 2016
  • "No more excuses." I like the idea. Parents will love it. So will teachers...unless we're tracking their time (see below). Students might resent it at first, but I think they'd eventually see the benefits. - davidwdeeds davidwdeeds Apr 4, 2016
  • The potential is there and so are the benefits but the technology raises ethical questions about privacy and “Big Brother is watching you”. - claus.gregersen claus.gregersen Apr 10, 2016- roger.blamire roger.blamire
  • I see this as one of the technology areas with the biggest potential for application as well as misuse. Being able to track all aspects of what is going on with a student to help track things like focus, sleep, attentiveness, overall health, as well as time on task, capturing things from different perspectives, and being able to quantify the learning environment that surrounds students and teachers day to day. But the collection of that data, mis-application, misinterpretation, and storing it safely is a huge concern. - alex.podchaski alex.podchaski May 1, 2016

(2) What themes are missing from the above description that you think are important?

  • How about tracking teachers' time? I teach students and train teachers. Talk about making excuses, teachers do it more than students! I'd like to use this kind of technology to show teachers that they indeed do have time for technology training, and what better way than to use technology to prove it? - davidwdeeds davidwdeeds Apr 4, 2016
  • We need to be really thoughtful that the analytics provider is not also the solutions provider. An analogy that works for me is the radon testing companies are also very happy to sell mitigation kits. If ClassDojo starts providing behavior interventions, I'd be concerned about the slippery slope we'd find ourselves on. - mporter mporter Apr 23, 2016
  • The ability to colelct and share that data with third party aggregators is the missing link to the utilization of the information on a wide scale. most of the devices are closed ecosystems, with the revenue stream dependent on the company analyzing the data. Breaking that link or tapping into it may prove difficult.- alex.podchaski alex.podchaski May 1, 2016

(3) What do you see as the potential impact of this technology on teaching, learning, or creative inquiry?

  • I don't know if this will ever gain any traction at our school, but I'm trying to get teachers to engage in better time management. A half hour here, an hour there...this ties in with Wearables and Micro Learning. Got an hour before your next class? Instead of loitering in the teachers' lounge complaining, how about taking a quick technology lesson? Can you tell how popular I am for even suggesting such a thing? But our principals and other administrators keep threatening to make teachers accountable for how they waste...er, spend..their time. We'll see if they're serious. - davidwdeeds davidwdeeds Apr 4, 2016
  • The ability to quantify that your student does not eat well at home, or sleep well at home, would be a game changer in assessing the needs of children in school. It is also a huge invasion of privacy for a family. Somewhere, there is a shared common ground where the data can be used in the proper way to assist both parties, but we are not there yet.- alex.podchaski alex.podchaski May 1, 2016

(4) Do you have or know of a project working in this area?

  • I wish! At our school this may just be a dream. ;) - davidwdeeds davidwdeeds Apr 4, 2016
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