As Instructure grows and evolves as a company, our focus also expands. In an effort to be open and transparent, we are going to start opening up the laboratory door and show you some of the next-gen projects we have been working with our research teams. This post is the first of hopefully many where we can share our coolest projects and you can learn a bit more of what is happening here.
But first I just want to take some time to talk about what we are doing and why. As a part of the Research team at Instructure we are tasked with trying new things that can help make our products even better for our users. One of our key focus areas is on the student, as student needs are often forgotten elsewhere. In an effort to do that, we discuss what problems students are facing with many different people, internal and external. We use that feedback to build new features for Canvas and other products. We often test these features with real Canvas users from the community. If you are interested, click here to see what we have running and try it out!
Our most recent research has focused on student success. Specifically, how can we help instructors make better decisions regarding their students? Instructors of today are stretched thin, as demand to teach more students in more courses increases. Are there tools we can build for Canvas that can reduce the steps from data to decision? This line of thinking lead us to develop two projects: On-Track Predictor and Participation Score. In future posts we will cover both of these ideas, how we built them and how they will interact with users.
Lead Data Scientist, Instructure