3 things digital literacy nonprofit Byte Back learned from a recent data dive - Technical.ly DC

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Aug. 12, 2016 12:02 pm

3 things digital literacy nonprofit Byte Back learned from a recent data dive

Executive Director Elizabeth Lindsey said the digital inclusion nonprofit aims to act on all three.
Byte Back HQ in Brookland.

Byte Back HQ in Brookland.

(Photo by Tajha Chappellet-Lanier)

Applied Predictive Technologies (APT), a data analytics software company with offices in Arlington as well as a variety of other locations, recently partnered with Byte Back, a D.C. digital inclusion initiative, for a “data dive.”

During the data dive, three teams of six to 12 APT employees took a look at Byte Back data on student success, classroom location and resource allocation to generate suggestions on how to optimize all three. The APT teams presented their findings to Byte Back, including executive director Elizabeth Lindsey, at the end of last month.

Here are the three questions this data dive asked and answered:

1. How can Byte Back allocate resources to students most in need?

  • The data allowed APT teams to identify “at-risk” students who are unlikely to be able to complete a given course. Students who don’t have a stable housing situation or haven’t completely high school, for example, are relatively more likely to struggle with the Byte Back program. This information, in turn, will allow the organization to intervene early and direct additional resources in the direction of these at-risk students.

2. What makes for a successful student?

  • The APT data dive found that students with prior higher education experience are more likely to succeed at Byte Back, while students who enroll multiple times in the same course are less likely to succeed. This information can help direct things like course placement.

3. Where should Byte Back have classrooms?

  • The APT teams analyzed past classroom locations and found that areas with low crime rates and a high percentage of middle-aged denizens (defined as ages 45 to 59) make for a good spot. According to a press release the team built some custom mapping software to help Byte Back make future classroom location decisions. No word yet on precisely where these might pop up.

“We will utilize every single one of these findings in making our program better and influencing our students’ lives,” Lindsey said in a statement. “Byte Back is so grateful to the APT teams for their enthusiasm and generosity in helping us pursue data-driven excellence.”

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