What is Quantified Self?

Quantified self describes the phenomenon of consumers being able to closely track data that is relevant to their everyday lives through the use of technology. The emergence of wearable devices on the market such as watches, wristbands, and necklaces that are designed to automatically collect data are helping people manage their fitness, sleep cycles, and eating habits. Mobile apps also share a central role in this idea by providing easy-to-read dashboards for consumers to view and analyze their personal metrics. Empowered by these insights, many individuals now rely on these technologies to improve their lifestyle and health. Today’s apps not only track where a person goes, what they do, and how much time they spend doing it, but now what their aspirations are and when those can be accomplished. Novel devices, too, are enabling people to track their lives automatically, such as the Memoto, a camera worn around the neck that is designed to capture an image every half minute. As more people rely on their mobile devices to monitor their daily activities, data is becoming a larger part of everyday life.

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(1) How might this technology be relevant to the educational sector you know best?

  • I could see a significance particularly in medical studies and sports/physical education - helga helga Oct 6, 2015
  • Has higher education ever made enough of learning to learn, or study skills, the clear articulation of learning practices? The areas covered by the technology at the moment could be used to enable students to develop positive habits that enable them to study. Other applications could be developed that ring more specific apps to HE onto devices that enable students to reflect on their personal development.- jan.howden jan.howden Oct 14, 2015
  • Taken in connection with big data and data analytics, the quantified self has incredible upsides for education. Consider the possibilities--could students have blood sugar or heart rate monitoring that reminds them to eat or rest or when to study? Could massive amounts of data be used to better manage facilities? Could we find correlations between stress and certain classrooms? Could we customize curriculum based on individual factors? Or what about quantified self as applied to curriculum. If your device knows what you are studying and when, it might be able to connect you to others studying the same thing. At any rate, I would think about this topic as big individual data. - david.thomas david.thomas Oct 16, 2015
  • The potential blend of the Quantified Self + Wearables + Learning Analytics will lead to key developments in understanding learners. Both the technology and research is experiencing rapid growth and is something to watch. Understanding how we can leverage these types of technologies and insights gained from them can drive further the personalization of education. - Maya Maya Oct 19, 2015Maya Georgieva

  • We can also think about the possible psychological cases that may occur if people have that much data about their health. - ateskan ateskan Oct 22, 2015 - helga helga Oct 23, 2015
  • How we use wearables to contribute to learning analytics, understanding the student journey, how we design our buildings and learning spaces but also how students can use to support their own learning - capturing data, research, field research, sharing - DaveP DaveP Oct 24, 2015

(2) What themes are missing from the above description that you think are important?

  • The description emphasizes non-educational applications, which may be where this concept has the most traction. But what are the educational applications of the quantified self? Also, there are claims in the description that the tracking of data is changing behavior (managing their habits, improving their lifestyle) - is there evidence of that? Or, put another way, how does the tracking lead to changed behaviors? - kvogt kvogt Oct 6, 2015
  • I don´t know of actual studies/surveys regarding this question (but surely they are there or at least in the making), but think it can be safely assumed that users will react to the records/results that are provided by the devices, e.g. working out more or at least being aware that they should do in order to achieve a goal that they entered into the device - helga helga Oct 6, 2015
  • As I mentioned above, QS is a driver for big data initiatives.It's a source of data. - david.thomas david.thomas Oct 16, 2015
  • I think this topic should be folded into "Wearable Technology" as they address fundamentally the same issues. - tom.haymes tom.haymes Oct 19, 2015 - DaveP DaveP Oct 24, 2015- neil.witt neil.witt Oct 25, 2015
  • I agree that this topic is closely related to wearables http://www.scoop.it/t/internet-of-things-by-anastasios-economides or even to another topic on Adaptive and Personalized Learning. Besides tracking, monitoring, recording data, the issues of analyzing these data, making decisions and taking actions based on these data are the most important. - Anastasios.A.ECONOMIDES Anastasios.A.ECONOMIDES Oct 22, 2015

(3) What do you see as the potential impact of this technology on higher education?

  • This technology will only grow and merge with other aspects of our online life. We will generally collect and share more data on ourselves and on more conceptual aspects such as likes and dislikes or tendencies. It has the potential to provide more routes to and more casual interactions with areas of knowledge. Across a whole range of areas universities may offer opportunities for engagement in short pieces of learning that could build credit or enable people to share data and communicate with others around common goals and interests based on research.- jan.howden jan.howden Oct 14, 2015
  • As we move into more data driven decision making and curriculum, we need to stop thinking about the LMS and SIS as the primary sources of data. QS is yet another important stream to consider.- david.thomas david.thomas Oct 16, 2015 - DaveP DaveP Oct 24, 2015

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(4) Do you have or know of a project working in this area?

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