- Brigham Young University is developing a personal API option for students, giving them the ability to define who gets access to their data and for what through personal domains for all those interested.
- EdSurge reports that students would be able to store their own data — including information about enrollment, class participation, and financial aid — and give other applications or websites access on a case-by-case basis.
- BYU does not expect every student to use an API, but those who do accept a personal domain will be able maintain control over their own data long after they leave the university.
The preliminary discussion of the personal API concept does not include information about how the institution’s data analytics goals could be compromised if a critical mass of students use the API to block access to their data. Colleges and universities have embraced big data to develop early warning systems and tailor student supports so more students stay in college and proceed toward their degrees.
Schools are tracking student movements around campuses, incorporating data about how many times they visit the library or the tutoring center into performance data, merging that with student information system and learning management system data, and then developing predictive models to help counselors and students themselves. Giving students access to their own data is one thing, but letting them block others from seeing it is a different beast that could derail retention efforts.