Canvas - Using the Learner Engagement Analytics Dashboard (LEAD)

This document walks through how to access the Learner Engagement Analytics Dashboard (LEAD) as well as the various components that make up the LEAD and its data.

LEAD is a course-level learning analytics dashboard that displays Canvas data to course instructors using Tableau, our institutional data visualization tool.

LEAD is part of UW-Madison's broader efforts around learning analytics. More information about learning analytics at UW-Madison is available from the Vice Provost for Teaching and Learning and DoIT Academic Technology. For practical information about using course-level learning analytics, please visit the Academic Technology guide "What are the pedagogical uses of learning analytics?"


    To access LEAD, navigate to Log in by entering your NetID followed by and clicking Sign In. (Note that this will look like an email address, but it may be different than your primary UW-Madison email address.)

    Note: Access to LEAD is currently available for instructors who have agreed to pilot this dashboard. If you have not been officially enrolled in the pilot, you will not have access to your course data at this time.

    Once inside LEAD you will have access to a home page and three visualization pages:

    Before clicking on the actual visualization pages, please review the Technical Notes page. These pages explain what LEAD is and describe and define what data you can see in the visualizations.


    Currently LEAD only uses data from the Canvas Learning Management System. This data includes:

    • Roster information
    • Grade information
    • Click-stream (log) data

    The data is displayed in different forms in the three visualizations and can be filtered.

    IMPORTANT NOTE ABOUT THE DATA: Due to data structure there is some discrepancy in how page view data is currently counted in LEAD.

    • Canvas Discussions and Quizzes count every click a student makes as a page view.
    • For Announcements, Assignments,and the Gradebook, Canvas only records a page view when students click the relevant link in the navigation bar. For example, if a student navigates to the Assignments tab, then clicks into several individual assignments, only one page view will be recorded.


    There are five filters that you can apply to your LEAD visualizations:

    • Select Date: The date slider allows you to look at data within a specified date range. Make sure to open the calendar and select today's date in order to view the most recent data.
    • Select Course Name: This allows you to filter the data by course, if you have more than one course in the dashboard.
    • Select Canvas Activity Type. This allows you to filter by Canvas Activity Type. The five Canvas Activity Types are Announcements, Assignments, Discussions, Gradebook Grades, and Quizzes. See the Technical Notes for definitions of the Canvas Activity Types.
    • Select Canvas Activity Type Name: This allows you to filter by specific named items or pages within Canvas.
    • Select Student Name: This allows you to filter the data by student(s).

    The five filters apply to all three visualizations simultaneously. When you set the filters on one visualization, they will persist as you navigate to other LEAD visualizations. More information about working with filters in Tableau can be found in the How to Use a Tableau Visualization guide.

    Remember that after you change a filter, you must hit the Apply button before the change will take effect.


    Home Page

    The Home Page contains a brief description of LEAD as well as links to all the other pages and functional descriptions of the icons in the visualizations. Please note that you can also navigate to any page in LEAD by selecting the tabs at the top of the page.


    Page Views by Date and Hour

    This visualization shows you a heat map of when your students are accessing your course in Canvas. On the left you can filter the data by date, student(s), Canvas page/item, and Canvas page type. So, if you would like to know when your students generally take a quiz in Canvas, you can set the date range for the whole semester, select All students and select Quizzes. You can also narrow your filters to a specific quiz (by date or by Canvas Activity Type Name), and a specific student (or set of students).


    The darker red an hour block is, the more times that Canvas activity has been accessed at that time of day for the date range you selected. Whatever the highest number of accesses in a given hour is will be the darkest red and the visualization will adjust the shading on the other cells accordingly. You can also hover over any cell and see the exact number of pages accessed for that specific block of time.

    Grades by Page Views

    This scatterplot visualization is a comparison of students' grades and the total number of pages they have viewed in your Canvas course. The higher up on the y-axis a student is, the higher their grade is in your course (according to the Canvas Gradebook). The further to the right along the x-axis, the more pages a student has viewed in Canvas.


    The visualization also draws a trend line for your whole course comparing grades to page views. While there is usually a general, course-wide relationship between grades and page views, individual students may be outliers to this trend. As with any comparison, the relationship between grades and page views should not be viewed as determinative for any individual student.

    In the future, uses for this visualization may include:

    • Identifying student "outliers" and using this information as part of a broader discussion to determine whether they may need an intervention or more support
    • Gathering more information about Canvas usage behaviors for students who seem to be struggling in your course

    Page Views by Activity Type

    This visualization allows you to see how many times your students are accessing the various activity types in Canvas. You can use filters to drill-down and see how much a specific piece of content on your Canvas site is being accessed, and who is accessing it. This visualization can also give you a sense for when students are accessing specific pieces of content in Canvas.


    Keywords:LEAD learner engagement analytics dashboard learning data tableau visualizations visualisations   Doc ID:90898
    Owner:Angela T.Group:Academic Technology Pilots
    Created:2019-04-08 12:17 CDTUpdated:2019-04-15 14:44 CDT
    Sites:Academic Technology Pilots, Learn@UW-Madison
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