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The DELICATE checklist contains eight action points that should be considered by managers and decision makers planning the implementation of Learning Analytics / Educational Data Mining solutions either for their own institution or with an external provider.
The eight points are:
1. Determination: Decide on the purpose of learning analytics for your institution. What aspects of learning or learner services are you trying to improve?
2. Explain: Define the scope of data collection and usage. Who has a need to have access to the data or the results? Who manages the datasets? On what criteria?
3. Legitimate: Explain how you operate within the legal frameworks, refer to the essential legislation. Is the data collection excessive, random, or fit for purpose?
4. Involve: Talk to stakeholders and give assurances about the data distribution and use. Give as much control as possible to data subjects (permission architecture), and provide access to their data for the individuals.
5. Consent: Seek consent through clear consent questions. Provide an opt-out option.
6. Anonymise: De-identify individuals as much as possible, aggregate data into meta-models.
7. Technical aspects: Monitor who has access to data, especially in areas with high staff turn-over. Establish data storage to high security standards.
8. External partners: Make sure externals provide highest data security standards. Ensure data is only used for intended purposes and not passed on to third parties.
We hope that the DELICATE checklist will be a helpful instrument for any educational institution to demystify the ethics and privacy discussions around Learning Analytics. As we have tried to show in this article, there are ways to design and provide privacy conform Learning Analytics that can benefit all stakeholders and keep control with the users themselves and within the established trusted relationship between them and the institution.