Evaluation of Algorithms to Predict Graduation Rate in Higher Education Institutions by Applying Educational Data Mining
Oswaldo Moscoso-Zea, Pablo Saa, Sergio Luján-Mora
Australasian Journal of Engineering Education (AJEE), 24(1), p. 4-13, 2019. ISSN: 2205-4952. eISSN: 1325-4340. https://doi.org/10.1080/22054952.2019.1601063
(AJEE'19) Revista / Journal
Nowadays, researchers analyse student data to predict the graduation rate by looking at the characteristics of students enrolled and to take corrective actions at an early stage or improve the admission process. Educational data mining (EDM) is an emerging field that can support the implementation of changes in the management of higher education institutions. EDM analyses educational data using the development and the application of data mining (DM) methods and algorithms to information stored in academic data repositories. The purpose of this paper is to review which methods and algorithms of DM can be used in the analysis of educational data to improve decision-making. Furthermore, it evaluates these algorithms using a dataset composed of student data in the computer science school of a private university. The core of the analysis is to discover trends and patterns of study in the graduation rate indicator. Finally, it compares these methods and algorithms and suggests which has the best precision in certain scenarios. Our analyses suggest that random trees had better precision but had limitations due to the difficulty of interpretation while the J48 algorithm had better possibilities of interpretation of results in the visualisation of the classification of data and only had slightly inferior performance.