John Mitchell: 2015 Security Workshop


Monday, April 27, 2015
Location: Fisher Conference Center, Arrillaga Alumni Center

"Education Data Policy and Privacy Concerns"


As textbooks are replaced by a wide range of richer online activities, data collected through these activities has great potential to improve education for all. At the same time, learners and the parents of minors have significant concerns about security and privacy. For example, inBloom launched in 2013 with $100 million in financing from the Gates Foundation and Carnegie Corp. The company’s goal was to provide educators with a data-based tool to personalize instruction. However, the company decided to closed in April 2014 over privacy concerns after loss of the startup's last active client — New York state. This talk will describe some ways that small-scale and large-scale data collection can improve education and discuss a process toward principled sharing of learner data among universities and researchers.


John Mitchell is Professor of Computer Science, Vice Provost for Teaching and Learning, and the Mary and Gordon Crary Family Professor in the School of Engineering. His organization on campus supports excellence and innovation in teaching and learning. Between summer 2012 and the end of 2014, the prior office for online learning completed approximately 450 projects, each developing technology to support a Stanford class, a public online class, or revise a previous project. These projects were completed in collaboration with over 200 Stanford instructors. As a professor of computer science, Mitchell's research interests include computer security, privacy, programming languages, mathematical logic, and web technology.