Analytics for Course Engagement (ACE)

More information on ACE, UC's new early alert system.


Analytics for Course Engagement (ACE)

UC is implementing a new platform that will provide students and staff with an enhanced real-time view of online engagement with learning systems. The Analytics for Course Engagement system, or ACE, sits within LEARN and uses machine learning, drawing data from student engagement with course materials, assignments, and Echo360. Every first year student taking 100 level courses will have access to a “fitness tracker” – a personalised dashboard for each of their courses, helping them to better understand whether they’re on track to succeed in their studies. Lecturers who teach 100 level courses will also have access to an ACE Dashboard, helping them to understand how their students are engaging with the resources they provide online. ACE uses a comparative measure, showing students how their engagement is tracking compared to their classmates. Students can view their engagement dashboard on the LEARN website.

What are the objectives of ACE?

Systems like ACE have increased in popularity over recent years. Levels of student engagement have been linked to student success, and the monitoring of student engagement will help UC to flag decreased or sudden changes in engagement within the online environment. This will allow the University to connect students with services across campus that will support them to succeed in their tertiary studies. ACE will allow UC to:

  • Monitor the academic engagement of students with online resources
  • Flag students who may need additional support
  • Better support students and connect them to wider university services

What data does ACE use?

ACE uses data logs from students’ engagement with LEARN and Echo360 and creates an engagement “score” for each student. It then compares the student’s score to the average engagement score of all students in that course. ACE does not track performance or attendance at lectures.

Who sees the data?

ACE uses data that is already available within LEARN and Echo360, it simply aggregates it in one place. This data is available to teaching staff within a course, the E-Learning team, and the ACE team. Students are able to see their own data.

Each college has responders who will be notified about students who are flagged as needing to improve their engagement. The ACE system has a designated coordinator who will regularly draw down the engagement data to start the process of engaging students who have been flagged.

Who is included?

For 2020, ACE is being rolled out to all first year students. This is determined by their enrolment in 100 level courses.

What about privacy?

The UC Student Agreement has been updated this year to ensure that students know that UC might contact them or their emergency contacts if they have concerns about their engagement or safety, and all students agree to this when they accept their acceptance offer. The ACE team has worked closely with the privacy team to ensure we are meeting our legal obligations around privacy. For more information, contact

Who is involved in the ACE system?

There are many people involved with ACE. The ACE team sits within the Learning Evaluation and Academic Development team, and has a designated ACE Coordinator. The ACE team has been working closely with the enrolments team, accommodation providers, colleges, support services, the e-learning team, and many other contacts across UC to provide a coordinated integration of ACE for Semester 1 2020.

What do I do if I need further help?

If you have any questions about ACE can, you can contact


I’m a lecturer in a 100 level course. What do I need to do?

Unless you’ve been approached by your respective college, you won’t need to do anything if a student is flagged by the ACE system. If you want to see your students engage more with LEARN materials, the e-Learning team can help with expert advice on online course design. Click here to get in touch with them.

My 100 level course doesn’t use LEARN. What about students in my course?

In the first instance, ACE is only able to track students in courses that have an online component. Future iterations of ACE may include additional data.


I’m a student, what do I do if my engagement is tracking below my classmates?

If this is the case you may want to check in with your classmates or your teaching staff, to be sure you haven’t missed anything like an assessment or online quiz. If ACE notices your engagement has dropped, UC might contact you to see if there’s something we can do to get your engagement back on track. If UC is concerned about your engagement and can’t get in touch with you, we may contact your emergency contact person or other relevant people or agencies. There are also a number of support services on offer across UC. Make the most of your studies and check them out here.

I’m a student, will I get a message from the University?

If ACE notices your engagement has dropped UC might contact you to see if there’s something we can do to help get your engagement back on track. It is important that you respond to communication from UC. If UC is concerned about your engagement and can't get in touch with you, we may contact your emergency contact person or other relevant agencies.