Learning Analytics and the Academic Library: Professional Ethics Commitments at a Crossroads

Kyle M. L. Jones, Dorothea Salo

Abstract

In this paper, the authors address learning analytics and the w ays academic libraries are beginning to participat e in wider institutio nal learning analyt ics initiatives. Since there are moral issues associated with learning analytics, the authors consider how data mining practices run counter to ethical principles in the American Library Association’s “Code of Ethics.” Specifically, the authors addre ss how learning analytics implic ates professional commitments to promote intellectual freedom; protect patron privacy and confid entiality; and balance intellectual property interests between library users, their institution, an d content creators and vendors. The authors recommend that librarians should embed their ethical po sitions in technological designs, practices, and governance mechanisms.

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Copyright Kyle M. L. Jones, Dorothea Salo


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