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Using OnTask to personalise feedback and communication to students: What do academics say?

Over the past few years, OnTask has been used by academics at UTS to create rule-based messages to personalise feedback and tailor communication to every student in their subject. What is their experience with using this novel personalised messaging tool, and how do they feel about the impact of their personalised communication with students? CIC interviewed a few academics to find out their perspective.

OnTask is a tool that draws on learning analytics for personalising feedback. A key feature of this semi-automated learning analytics feedback tool is that it puts the data in the hands of the academic, so that they can make decisions about the information they want to feed back to students, the timing or scheduling of their feedback or communication, and the actual wording of the message tailored to subgroups of students, to ensure timely, relevant, and supportive feedback for all students.

Here’s what we asked our academics:

  1. What motivated you to use OnTask?
  2. What did you feel was the impact of using OnTask in your subject?
  3. Did OnTask save you time?
  4. What challenges did you face when you used OnTask?
  5. Is it worth all the effort to learn to use and implement OnTask?

These academics were from different faculties, and each had a distinct experience with using the tool to reach out to their students in a personalised way.  We’ve created a couple of videos to help other academics understand the experience of designing and deploying automated feedback messaging with their students. Check out the videos below.

We thank Amara Atif (FEIT), James Wakefield (Business), Keith Heggart (FASS), Nicole Sutton (Business), Simone Faulkner (Business), and Timothy Boye (FEIT) – for their kind permission to be featured in this video.

If you would like more information on how you can use OnTask in your subject, please send an email to cic@uts.edu.au with the subject “OnTask”.

  • 5 minute teaser:


  • 20 minute coffee break video: