Photo of Bart Rienties

Prof Bart Rienties

Professor in Learning Analytics

I am Professor of Learning Analytics at the Institute of Educational Technology at the Open University UK. I joined IET in January 2014, initially as Reader in Learning Analytics. Previously I worked at University of Surrey from 2010-213 as (senior) lecturer in higher education, and before that in various roles from 2000-2010 at Maastricht University. My main research interests are related to Learning Analytics, Learning Design, Computer-Supported Collaborative Learning, and Professional Development. Also I am interested in broader internationalisation aspects of higher education.

Bart has over twenty years of experience in designing, researching and evaluating blended and online learning programmes in higher education and professional learning. Bart is Professor of Learning Analytics and programme director of the learning analytics and learning design research programme at the Institute of Educational Technology at the Open University UK. As programme director he leads a group of academics who provide university-wide learning analytics and learning design solutions and conduct evidence-based research of how students and professionals learn. Over the last 20 years he has successfully led a range of institutional/national/European projects, and has received a range of awards for his educational innovation projects. These projects include a range of EU projects (AIT, Evaluate, LACE, LEAP, Teach 4.0), ESRC IDEAS, Leverhulme Open World Learning, and OFS Learning Gains, which focussed on learning analytics, evidence-based evaluations, and large-scale adoptions of innovation. Furthermore, he is programme lead of the learning analytics and learning design research theme within IET.

Bart conducts multi-disciplinary research on work-based and collaborative learning environments and focuses on the role of social interaction in learning, which is published in leading academic journals and books. His primary research interests are focussed on Learning Analytics, Professional Development, and the role of motivation in learning. Furthermore, Bart is interested in broader internationalisation aspects of higher education. He has published over 200 academic outputs, and is the 4th most cited author and contributor in Learning Analytics in the period 2011-2018 (Adeniji, 2019), the 5th most published author on internationalisation in the period 1900-2018 (Jing et al. 2020), the 7th most published author on social network analysis in social sciences in the period 1999-2018 (Su et al. 2020), and the 14th most published author on educational technology in the period 2015-2018 (West & Bodily, 2020).

He is Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (HEA) and is visiting professor at University of Dundee.










  • Tempelaar, Dirk T.; Rienties, Bart; Giesbers, Bas and van der Loeff, Sybrand Schim (). Cultural differences in learning dispositions. In: Van den Bossche, Piet; Gijselaers, Wim H. and Milter, Richard G. eds. Facilitating Learning in the 21st Century: Leading through Technology, Diversity and Authenticity Dordrecht: Springer, pp. 3-30.



  • Tempelaar, Dirk T.; Rienties, Bart; Kaper, Wolter; Giesbers, Bas; Schim van der Loeff, Sybrand; van Gastel, Leendert; van de Vrie, Evert; van der Kooij, Henk and Cuypers, Hans (). Mathematics bridging education using an online, adaptive e-tutorial. In: Juan, Angel A.; Huertas, Maria A.; Trenholm, Sven and Steegmann, Cristina eds. Teaching Mathematics Online: Emergent Technologies and Methodologies Hershey, PA: IGI, pp. 167-186.






RAPIDE (Relevant assessment and pedagogies for inclusive digital education) 2021 - 2023


A longitudinal mixed method study of learning gain: applying Affective-Behaviour Cognition framework at 3 institutions 2015 - 2018
BNUFS (Data-informed Learning Design for Future Schools) 2017
EVALUATE (Evaluating and Upscaling Telecollaborative Teacher Education) 2017 - 2019
Facilitating equitable access and quality education for development: South African International Distance Education 2016 - 2019
Improving social capital for learning 2015 - 2016
Project Logo LACE (Learning Analytics Community Exchange) 2014 - 2016
LFIA (Learning from Incidents and Implementing Action) 2016 - 2019
OWL (Open World Learning) 2015 - 2020
LAEP (The implications and opportunities of learning analytics for European educational policy) 2015 - 2016

England Seeks to Measure Learning

Inside Higher Ed | 9th September 2016

International students: universities must lead fight against intolerance of migrants

The Conversation | 11th December 2018

Interview with Bart Rienties

Times Higher Education | 29th March 2018

OU algorithm for monitoring online student engagement

Financial Times | 24th July 2015

Student satisfaction ‘unrelated’ to academic performance

Times Higher Education | 12th February 2018

Teaching intelligence: how to use learning analytics

Times Higher Education | 15th November 2018

Universities are tracking their students. Is it clever or creepy?

The Guardian | 3rd August 2016

Weighing up the benefits of learning

Times Higher Education | 1st February 2018


Invited Talk

8th May 2020


1st October 2019

Educational Technology - opportunities and pitfalls

European Statistics in Support of Researchers (#ESiSoR) Luxembourg

Invited Talk

12th March 2019


7th March 2019

Data analytics: analysing millions of points of UNISA student data

8th Research & Innovation week UNISA Johannesburg, South Africa


9th November 2018


25th October 2018


5th September 2018

Predictive learning analytics

25th HUCMBS conference University of Essex

Invited Talk

22nd November 2017


30th August 2017


27th August 2017


EARLI 2017 Tampere, Finland


17th July 2017

Invited Talk

22nd March 2017

OEEE Q&A with Learning Analytics

OEEE Q&A with Learning Analytics Invited session at Open Education Europa


13th October 2016

The power of learning analytics: a need to move towards new methodologies in education?

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam Learning analytics conference Amsterdam, The Netherlands


1st January 2016


Best Full Paper HCI 2017

Best paper award for Nguyen, Q., Rienties, B., & Toetenel, L. (2017). Mixing and Matching Learning Design and Learning Analytics. Paper presented at the HCI Conference, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada: Springer, pp. 302-316.

Best full paper ICSE 2015

Best paper award for Tempelaar, D. T., Rienties, B., Giesbers, B. (2015). Stability and sensitivity of Learning Analytics based prediction models. Proceedings of 7th International conference on Computer Supported Education, Lisbon, Portugal, pp. 156-166.

Best Full Paper LAK 2018

Best paper award for Nguyen, Q., Huptych, M., Rienties, B. (2018). Linking students’ timing of engagement to learning design and academic performance: A longitudinal study. Paper presented at the 8th International Conference on Learning Analytics & Knowledge (LAK’18), Sydney, Australia, pp. 141-150

Best paper award CELDA 2019

Best paper award for Tempelaar, D., Nguyen, Q., Rienties, B., (2019). Learning engagement, learning outcomes and learning gains: lessons from LA. Paper presented at the 16th International Conference Cognition and Exploratory Learning in Digital Age 2019 (CELDA), Cagliari, Italy.

Open Education Excellence for Leverhulme Open World Learning PhD programme

Award for Open Education Excellence for Leverhulme Open World Learning PhD programme, Open Education Consortium

Paul Webley Award for Innovation in International Education for UKCISA project STRIDE

Social Support through Transitions: A Student-Led and Cross-Institutional Investigation of International Postgraduate Student Experiences

External Appointments