Do you, as a student, have an expectation of privacy? Or should your university mine all of that information they’ve been collecting on you for years? Does your answer change if the question is about campus safety or about campus marketing?
Universities must be prepared to use data mining to identify and mitigate the potential for tragedy.
Many campuses across the country and most in California provide each student with an e-mail address, personal access to the university’s network, free use of campus computers, and wired and wireless Internet access for their Web-connected devices. Students use these campus resources for conducting research, communicating with others, and for other personal activities on the Internet, including social networking. University officials could potentially mine data from their students and analyze them, since the data are already under their control. The analysis could then be screened to predict behavior to identify when a student’s online activities tend to indicate a threat to the campus.
Public Insight would like you to contribute your take on the issue for a larger issue they are putting together.