Tag Archives: dashboard

Build a Dashboard – Reflection

Figure 1 – Dashboard Example

My overall experience with this task was one of confusion and a simple question, what do I show that is relevant? The answer to that was always very close to this is not showing anything or if it is what real value is it showing other than numbers on a screen. It showed me in the same way the literature has been explaining that gleaming any meaningful information or understanding from dashboards does require more of a background to the pupils instead of just the numbers and a way to be able to critically analyse that data.

We were provided with two sets of data to work with and create some form of a dashboard, I decided to work with Sample Data 2 as Sample Data 1 was missing a lot of background information. Sample Data 1 had only numbers and it was difficult to understand if each number was associated with a particular section and if that was the case why some lines did not have the course ID. (Figure 2)

Figure 2 – CSV Data for Sample Data 1

As can be seen from Figure 2 it seems as though this information is in regard to “course 14” but with no definitive information on that it would be wrong to draw that conclusion.

As can be seen from Figure 1 I decided on straightforward graphs as I was unsure about how to display certain correlations I thought would be good. I struggled with how best to explain in a graph / dashboard that if a user logs in less to the platform and performs poorly show the teacher that information. At the same time, I was conflicted about trying to do that as that has been shown to not be accurate, how much someone interacts with a platform does not mean that they will do better or worse in an exam.

In my exploration of this I noticed that I was drawn more to the exam results than any other item on the CSV file. This idea seems to be one area that is the same throughout society we put so much emphasis on exam results that they are all that matter at the expense of everything else. If there was more granular information about a particular subject or task it is quite possible that this would be more valuable as it would be able to show knowledge increase over time and not just one point in time as exams do.

While these files had a certain set of data it made me think about what data should be collected to make the dashboards more valuable and it became rather complicated. As you start to measure you start to think about measuring everything but as you do that you encroach on people’s freedoms and is an education dashboard a valid reason to do this? Probably not.

Week 7 – Line Visualisation

Figure 1 – Line Visualisation

Over the last week I tracked what I did throughout the day. I only marked down a new entry when I moved to a new activity, I did not track how long I did the activities for.

Description of the Visualisation

I took inspiration from Dear Data, Week 7 Complaints, when doing this visualisation.

Each line on the left hand side of the image represent tasks done prior to 13:00 and each line on the right hand side represents tasks after 13:00. The measurements are for 5 days and each day has a different inclination, day 1 starting from the top to day 5 at the bottom.


Figure 2 – Legend


I wanted to show what it might be like for a teacher looking at data on a dashboard. There are a lot of lines but if there is limited training how do you know which lines are important or something that should be actioned. Even with a legend or some explanation about the graph how can a teacher understand the reasoning or the underlying logic for why something is being shown to them.

Due to limited colours I decided to use the same colours for different tasks depending on what side of 13:00 the task was. I think this brought out a good point, in that teachers are bombarded with graphs and dashboards with different lines and colours but again no training or context to what they mean. One graph could show a yellow line being something important but in another graph a yellow line could be simply an average marker.