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Teaching social media analytics: an assessment based on natural disaster postings.


Recent interest in "big data" analytics has escalated the demand for data analytics specialists. According to Deloitte (2012) there will be both a strong demand for skilled big data professionals in the US over the next five years and a shortage of 200,000 IT professionals with deep analytics skills (Manyika et al., 2011). Chiang, Goes, and Stohr (2012) recently suggested that business intelligence and analytics education program development provides a unique opportunity for the information systems discipline. They contended that the IS discipline should address the challenges of big data--especially in business school IS programs--to meet the growing demand for graduates who can aggregate, analyze, model and evaluate organizational data. To meet this challenge, schools are expanding business programs to develop IS graduates with the business, analytics, IT, and communications skills required for successful future business analytics leaders (Henschen, 2013; NUS-SOC, 2013). Chiang, Goes, and Stohr (2012) suggested that since the IS field has traditionally focused on quantitative, structured data, there is a need to address the interpretive aspect of analytics.

The increasingly popular social media applications such as Twitter, Facebook, blogs, and online product reviews lie within the "big data" spectrum and contain relevant information for business decision making. A survey by Wixom et al. (2014) noted the increasing interest in text analysis to extract information from semi-structured and non-structured data. Natural language processing and semantic interpretation are increasingly popular analytics solutions (Gorman & Klimberg, 2014). As technology evolves, undergraduate IS Business Intelligence and Analytics (BI&A) curriculum should include social media analytics (Topi et al., 2010).

In light of the above, we aim to demonstrate an assessment structure for teaching social media analytics concepts with the goal of analyzing and interpreting social media content. The proposed assessment supports the sharing of reusable teaching resources from different social media content for teaching social analytics in the IS curriculum. We have organized the remainder of this paper as follows. First we review the literature on business analytics teaching and the literature on analytics frameworks for assessment design. We then discuss our methodology for data collection and pre-processing, after which we present the learning enquiries and results. Next we discuss our findings. We conclude with our solutions, the limitations of this study, and suggestions for future studies.


2.1 Teaching Business Analytics

While new business analytics programs have multiplied dramatically since 2010, teaching resources such as datasets and case studies remain scarce for professors in this field (Wixom et al., 2014). A Pro-Quest database search of the literature for teaching cases and learning issues relating to business and data analytics in the IS discipline yielded few relevant results. There are not many IS publications on research regarding business analytics teaching and learning. Marchand and Peppard (2013) recommend that teachers put more effort into producing teaching resources and cases that focus on how people create and use information, and how to frame questions that data analytics might answer to increase our knowledge and understanding. Technology is changing rapidly, stressing the need for sharing and reusing innovative business analytics teaching practices and resources to resolve challenges concerning the core body of knowledge and the design and delivery of BI&A programs (Marjanovic, 2013).

In the IS discipline, BI&A includes three evolving categories: BI&A 1.0, 2.0 and 3.0. BI&A 1.0 comprises Database Management System transaction based structured content such as credit card and purchase transaction data. BI&A 2.0 comprises web-based unstructured content such as social media. BI&A 3.0 comprises the most recent developments in mobile and sensor based content, including wearable sensors, nano-sensors and mobile phone sensors (Chen, Chiang, and Storey, 2012). This classification helps guide institutions offering BI&A programs, specifically with respect to resources and technology adoption.

Educators should assess the teaching resources and skill sets needed for each category. The adoption of different technologies will influence the academic alliances programs and the ability to access those BI&A resources. For instance, the IBM Academic Initiative requires the adoption of Cognos, ILOG and SPSS.

IS schools must also balance their BI&A content to meet the diverse demands of the market. An interdisciplinary track covering IS, Statistics, Marketing and Finance is becoming a common approach for business analytics programs, and can potentially attract students from a wide range of backgrounds (Wixom et al., 2014). The applied business research class for MBA students at Utah State University's Jon M. Huntsman School of Business (Chudoba, Hauser, and Olsen, 2010) took a BI&A 1.0 approach using Excel, SQL and SPSS to analyze structured datasets. Chudoba, Hauser, and Olsen (2010) concluded that students exposed to different tools can benefit from being able to match the appropriate tool to the type of analysis, and are better able to gauge the amount of data needed to make statistically significant, informed decisions. One limitation of this approach is that they did not include unstructured data (e.g., consumer opinions) in the analysis to strengthen the decision making process.

Elizondo, Parzinger, and Welch (2011) employed project based learning in an undergraduate business intelligence class, using SAS Enterprise Miner software for predictive analysis and data mining. The approach helped students understand the importance of data integrity and statistical analysis for decision making in different scenarios.

In an approach closer to BI&A 2.0, Baylor University (Edgington, 2011) has offered a graduate level course for Masters of Science in Information Systems (MSIS) and Masters of Business Administration (MBA) students. Using SPSS Text Analytics software, the course focuses on analysis, validation, and the use of technology. The interdisciplinary nature of the course has gained positive feedback and the undergraduate program has adopted the course.

An example of BI&A 3.0 is the Singapore-MIT Alliance for Research and Technology at the Center for Environmental Sensing and Modeling, which is developing analytics systems that use a network of wireless sensors called WaterWiSe to identify state changes and detect water leaks that occur over time (Whittle, 2014).

2.2 Analytics Framework and Assessment Design

Davenport and Harris (2007) define analytics as "the extensive use of data, statistical and quantitative analysis, explanatory and predictive models, and fact based management to drive decisions and actions." Analytics is more than just the analytical methodologies or techniques used in logical analysis. It is a process of transforming data into actions through analysis and insights in the context of organizational decision making and problem solving.

Kaplan and Haenlein (2010) defined social media as a group of Internet based applications that enable the creation and exchange of user generated content. In this context, social media analytics is the technology used to monitor, measure, and analyze activity by users of the Web 2.0 (and beyond) in order to provide information for business decisions (Abbasi, 2012). Teaching such concepts requires a systematic analytics framework to provide the underpinnings for an assessment that demonstrates the concepts of social media analytics. Such a framework allows analysts to explore the underlying features and assumptions, and to transition from one target level to the next (Cooper, 2012).

According to Cooper (2012) a framework that is "descriptive, rather than definitive, in its approach" best accommodates the real-world complexity of analytics. Based on identifying the general characteristics of analytics, Cooper devised an extensible and adaptable framework. The framework consists of different dimensions grouped according to the similarity of their characteristics. To ensure the relevance of the framework to real-world problems, Cooper identified dimensions describing interactions between people, and interactions between people and data, things or ideas. We adopted Cooper's framework to establish our social media case. Table 1 provides an example of our social media assessment.

Dupin-Bryant and Olsen (2014) used one of several general approaches for developing assessments in analytics and data visualization. Using the 5E instructional model (a.k.a., the "BSCS 5Es instructional model") they developed a heat map tutorial based on stock market data. The 5E model consists of the following phases: engagement, exploration, explanation, elaboration, and evaluation. The 5E model has strong foundation in educational theory and research.


3.1 Background Information

A magnitude 6.3 earthquake struck the Canterbury region in New Zealand's South Island on Tuesday, February 22, 2011, at 12:51 p.m. The earthquake center was two kilometers west of Lyttelton, and ten kilometers southeast of Christchurch. In total, the earthquake killed 185 people, ranking it as the second-deadliest natural disaster recorded in New Zealand.

On March 11, 2011, at 5:46:23 a.m., a magnitude 9.0 earthquake struck off the coast of Honshu, Japan's most populous island, near Sendai, the capital city of Miyagi Prefecture. The earthquake triggered a devastating tsunami that swept over cities and farmlands in northern Japan. The disaster reportedly killed at least 15,690 people (MCEER, 2011). After news outlets reported these disasters, readers posted numerous comments in an online newspaper (

3.2 Procedures

We extracted the forum postings related to these two disasters, and they represent Parts A and B of the analytical framework. Since the online paper is a local paper, the participants in the forum are likely to be a sample of the local population. The "Event A" data file represents the Christchurch earthquake, and contains 769 postings extracted from February 22 to March 1. The "Event B" data file represents the Japan earthquake and tsunami, and contains 438 postings from March 11 to March 15. The data structure consists of Name, Date and Postings.

We stored these data in an Excel format for further processing. We performed pre-processing to remove any duplicate postings. We gave these two data files, together with an assignment description, to 45 IS students enrolled in a one-trimester, advanced database course containing a social media analytics module as part of an assessment. The students had approximately four weeks to complete the assignment. They were required to analyze the data using RapidMiner text processing software to compare the content and to interpret the results. Based on the mapping of the analytical framework, we formulated the students' main learning enquiries as follows:

(1) What are the topics of interest (themes) in the postings?

(2) Are the postings on the Christchurch earthquake more compassionate and sympathetic than those on the Japanese earthquake and tsunami?

(3) What are the sentiments regarding nuclear power, and the percentage of posts on this topic?

(4) What is the classification performance of the K-NN algorithm if one randomly selects a posting from the two event files?

(5) What is the rate of information diffusion of the two events?

We also wanted to evaluate how well students performed in this assignment in order to identify shortcomings and facilitate future improvements to the assessment itself.

Students loaded the data files into RapidMiner to perform text analytics. RapidMiner is an open-source data mining tool capable of various analyses, including unstructured data processing, modeling and classification (Rapid-i, 2012). The software processed the files with these basic steps: (i) Transform Cases, which transforms all characters in a document to either lower case or upper case, respectively; (ii) Tokenize, which splits the text of a document into a sequence of tokens; (iii) Filter Stop Words, which filters English stop words from a document by removing every token which equals a stop word from the built-in stop word list; (iv) Generate n-Gram, which creates term n-Grams of tokens in a document (a term n-Gram is defined as a series of consecutive tokens of length n); (v) Filter Tokens, which filters tokens based on the number of characters they contain; and (vi) Stem (Porter), which stems English words using the Porter stemming algorithm, applying an iterative, rule-based replacement of word suffixes to reduce the length of the words until a minimum length is reached. Figure 1 depicts a typical text processing sequence used in RapidMiner. These initial processes represent Parts A, B and C of the analytical framework in Table 1, while the subsequent analysis and results represent Parts D, E and F of the framework.


4.1 Word Frequency

Determining the themes of the postings is an important aspect of analyzing social media content. Word frequency can provide a quick summary of such themes. Term frequency (TF) is the number of times a term occurs in a document. We obtained the term frequency-inverse document frequency (TFIDF) by dividing the total number of documents by the number of documents containing the term, and then taking the logarithm of that quotient multiplied by the term frequency. Both the term frequency (TF) and term frequency-inverse document frequency (TFIDF) parameters are available in the RapidMiner text analytics module.

Students extracted the top 20 keywords from each file to compare the two events. Table 2 depicts the term frequency for the two events. The term frequency shows that most of the words in this dataset are related to compassion (Crawford et al., 2011;, 2013). Words such as "thoughts," "prayers," "love" and "help" are typical responses to crises (Qu et al., 2011; Wise, 2004). The posters also frequently mentioned disaster locations, so term frequency statistics clearly identified Christchurch (TF:416) and Japan (TF:331) as the crisis locations. Term frequency also showed that the crises clearly involved "people" (A:204; B:155). The posters also frequently mentioned the nature of the disaster, i.e. "earthquake."

4.2 Data Visualization

The goal of visualization is to facilitate the answering of questions, whether anticipated or not, until patterns emerge from the data in the visualization (Stacey, Salvatore, & Jorgensen, 2013). Visualization can sometimes make patterns more easily detectable. It can also provide a more intuitive understanding of the data and compress a large amount of data into a smaller area (Stacey, Salvatore, and Jorgensen, 2013). Visualizing text content is similar to visualizing term frequency.

A word cloud is a popular word visualization typically associated with keywords and text data. Figure 2 shows the word cloud of the two events. Though we did not normalize the term frequency table (Table 2) to the number of posts, the word cloud produced a normalized visualization. The normalized word cloud makes it immediately obvious that the words "thoughts" and "prayers" are relatively more salient in the Christchurch event than in the Japanese event. Other readily available data visualization tools which are suitable for a business oriented IS curriculum include Google, Excel, Tableau and Microsoft Report Builder.

4.3 Compassion and Sympathy

Knowing what other people think and say may aid significantly in the decision-making process. We can extract sentiments and opinions expressed in social media to help individuals make informed decisions. In disaster situations, postings that relate to compassion and attribution are commonly reported (Wise, 2004). We often associate compassion with times of trouble. The Macmillan dictionary (2013) defines compassion as "feeling sympathy for someone who is in a bad situation because you understand and care about them [sic]". According to Solomon (1998), in compassion, "one suffers with the other, but one need not actually feel his or her pain in any sense." Solomon (1998) also notes that compassion involves a focus on the other, and a desire for the other to overcome adversity, but that one "need not be intimately acquainted with a person or a creature in any sense in order to feel compassion for him."

Since people express compassion through words and actions, we identified the words most frequently associated with compassion and sympathy. For example the posting "All my thoughts go out to the people of Christchurch. We can only hope that things don't get any worse than it already seems to be =(" contains the compassionate words "thoughts" and "hope." Comparing the frequency of the compassionate words, we investigated the writers' level of compassion regarding the two events. Table 3 depicts the compassionate words, including stemming. After normalization to the total number of postings, a T-test showed that these compassionate words are more frequently used in Event A than in Event B (p=0.025 t=2.601). Hence, we conclude that writers were more compassionate and sympathetic about Event A. A possible reason is that Event A was geographically closer to the writers, giving it a stronger sense of immediacy than far away Event B. This is also evident from the frequency of the words "family" (event A:158, event B:32) and "friends" (event A:87 event B:23), suggesting that many postings involved someone close to the writer.

4.4 Emoticons and Special Symbols

Emoticons are strings of symbols widely used in text based communications such as SMS, tweets, e-mail, comments and forums (Ptaszynski et al., 2010). The use of emoticons has become an important part of daily communication (Maness, 2008). For text based communication analysis, these icons and symbols represent the body language and the emotional state of the writers. Table 4 represents three types of symbols used in the two events, mainly "Sad face," "Smiling face" and "Hugs and Kisses." Closer analysis of the use of "Smiling face" shows that writer used it with a compassionate tone rather than a teasing tone, as in "Our thoughts and prayers are with you!! Keep strong :)." Hence, similar to the finding of the compassionate word frequency, the compassionate symbol frequency is higher in Event A than in Event B. This further supports our previous finding that writers are more compassionate about Event A than Event B, again, possibly because Event A has a stronger sense of immediacy.

4.5 Sentiments on Nuclear Power

The term frequency of "nuclear" and "power" were rather high in the postings (see Table 2) and visible in the word cloud. This suggests another potential topic of interest within the postings. As there was no nuclear facility in New Zealand, and Event A happened before Event B, Event A contains no postings about nuclear power.

However Event B contains 44 posts (10.05% of the total posts) that mention the topic of nuclear power. Of those, only 5 posts (11.36%) reflect on the topic positively, while the remaining 39 (88.64%) reflect on the topic negatively. These negative postings are mainly opinion related, criticizing the dangers of nuclear power and suggesting reasons for not adopting nuclear power in New Zealand. The opinions expressed reflect the environmental and political culture of this country which has been traditionally opposed to nuclear power.

4.6 Classification of Posts

Classifying postings to determine topic types, emotional states, data sources, relevance, and the positivity or negativity of opinions is an important aspect of content analysis. In this assessment, we explore text classification (TC): the task of automatically detecting one or more predefined categories that are relevant to a specific document (Sebastiani, 2002). For example, newspapers might use an automated system to choose the most suitable category for a given classified ad. Filtering systems use TC to block the delivery of unwanted feeds (Sebastiani, 2002). The goal of the current exercise is to classify a posting as having been generated from Event A vs. Event B. This kind of TC can facilitate search efficiency by first navigating to the node and then restricting the search to a branch of interest (Sebastiani, 2002).

RapidMiner has various types of classification algorithms: decision tree, support vector machine, nearest neighbor, and naive Bayes. We used the K-Nearest Neighbor K-NN algorithm (K=5 with a 2-gram and TFIDF as the feature vector) to determine whether we could identify a randomly selected posting as belonging to Event A vs. Event B. According to expert nominations, citation counts and a community survey, the K-NN is among the top ten most influential data mining algorithms (Wu et al., 2008). Besides performing well in most situations, the K-NN is also one of the simplest algorithms, easily understood by business students. Using the Euclidean distance, the K-NN algorithm searches the pattern space for the k training examples that are closest to the unknown example.

In this exercise the K-NN method achieved an accuracy level of 82.02%. Table 5 depicts the resulting confusion matrix. Interestingly, the software misclassified postings as belonging to Event A far less often than it misclassified postings as belonging to Event B. This may suggest that Event A has strong discriminant words associated with it, and Event B does not.

4.7 Information Diffusion

Information diffusion refers to the spread of a piece of information through a network environment. It is analogous to the adoption of an innovation through a network environment. The Bass diffusion model is a common model that describes the diffusion mechanism (Mahajan, Muller, & Bass, 1990). The diffusion process is binary: the consumer either adopts or does not.

In the case of information (e.g., news) a reader may respond to the information by posting a comment or may wait until there is more information (including other postings) to trigger future postings. A forum user who posts a comment after receiving and responding to a piece of information has "adopted" that information. Two factors normally influence the spread of the innovation (information): the innovation effect and the imitation effect.

Figure 3 depicts the cumulative postings for every 10 minute interval, normalized to the total number of postings. The graph clearly shows that the postings for Event A (Christchurch) increase at a faster rate than do those for Event B. Using a nonlinear regression model, we fit the data to the Bass diffusion model below:

x(t) = M x [[1 - [e.sup.-(a+b)t]]/[1 + b/a [e.sup.-(a+b)t]]]

where x(t) is the total number of postings in time t. M is the maximum postings, a is the coefficient of innovation, and b is the coefficient of imitation.

The coefficient of innovation, sometimes called the coefficient of external influence, represents the influence of mass media, government agencies and advertising efforts on adoption. The coefficient of imitation, also called the coefficient of internal influence, represents the influence of social interactions (e.g., word-of-mouth) on adoption. The resulting coefficients of innovation were 0.031 and 0.008, with R2 equal to 0.986 and 0.957 for Event A and Event B, respectively. We forced the coefficients of imitation to zero in both cases, assuming no social interaction. The difference in the coefficients of external influence further provides evidence that the Christchurch disaster had greater immediacy and relevancy than the Japanese disaster.

4.8 Student Performance

Table 6 shows the achievement score for each assessment criterion for all 45 students who submitted the assignment. The achievement scores represent the average score attained on a particular assessment criterion. Students had no problem identifying word frequencies in this exercise. On average, they achieved a score of 96.8 for identifying word frequencies. Their sentiment analysis of the posts averaged the next highest score at 84.9. The main difficulty appeared to be their inability to discover new insights from the postings (average score: 26.2). This weakness may be a reflection of both the multi-disciplinary aspect of social analytics and the students' lack of the knowledge required to connect results with theories.

The assessment also revealed a lack of communication skills among the comment posters (e.g., good writing: average score 45.7). Colleges should prepare students with various forms of communication skills including good writing skills. For business analysts, communication skills are highly desirable and valuable, listed among the top five skills desired by employers when making hiring decisions (Wixom et al., 2014).

Despite RapidMiner's user friendly classification and cross-validation interface, students' attempts at quantifying classification performance were rather weak. Quantifying performance requires interpreting the results of the confusion matrix and supporting the acceptability of performance indicators such as recall and precision. According to the assessment evaluation, students could not fully comprehend the concepts or the processes behind classification performance or the confusion matrix (average score: 50.3).


As one facet of "big data" analytics, social media analytics is becoming increasingly important to organizations which need to transform such data into values with which to make strategic business decisions. Despite the high demand for data analytics professionals, academic courses which teach these relevant skills were neglected in the 2010 IS curriculum (Bell, Mills, and Fadel, 2013; Topi et al., 2010). Though recent trends indicate an increasing number of BI/BA programs, resources for teachers still remain a challenge (Wixom et al., 2014).

In this paper, we introduce an assessment for unstructured data analytics using social media content. The benefits of such an approach are twofold.

First, the abundance of social media content (e.g., tweets, blog posts, Facebook, forums, reviews, etc.) ensures that teaching resources and datasets are renewable and sustainable. Instructors can easily switch to new cases without repeating old ones, and can minimize preparation time for new cases by reusing the same assessment structure. New, relevant and domain-specific cases are available, such as food contamination, crisis communication, disaster postings, political forums, sports comments, consumer products reviews and science forums. Teachers can adopt these cases to provide personalized assessments without changing the assessment structure. Using multiple versions of assessment can also minimize the risk of plagiarism.

Second, by using real-world, up-to-date cases, students will appreciate the relevance of the analysis. Students will also acquire the practical real-world experience and knowledge that hiring managers consider critical (Wixom et al., 2014).

The learning enquiries for the assessment highlight many aspects of social media analytics. For instance, they demonstrate that social media analytics is multidisciplinary. In addition to critical technical skills (e.g., mathematics, statistics, computing), social media analytics also requires communication skills and social domain knowledge. For social analytics, the interpretative and informational aspects are more crucial than the technological aspect (Marchand & Peppard, 2013). For example, to evaluate the resilience of a community, analysts must conceptually understand theories regarding compassionate communication behavior during crises. They must also have the text processing skills to construct a reasonable proposition and build a theory to substantiate and meaningfully support the learning enquiries.

Analysis of the students' performance indicates an inadequacy in their social, behavioral and cognitive skills. For this assessment, instructors must emphasize that only extensive critical analysis can provide a deeper understanding of the degree of community resilience and support revealed by the postings, and that "number crunching" alone is not sufficient (Walsh, 2007). The interpretative aspect of data analytics normally receives less focus in the undergraduate IS curriculum but is necessary in graduate programs, especially IS programs that emphasize social policy research. Our analysis indicates that colleges should strengthen the interpretive aspect at the undergraduate level immediately.

We propose the following solutions. BI&A courses should include behavioral and social cognitive theory to provide an interpretation of analytics findings. We suggest using the Handbook of Theories of Social Psychology, a comprehensive text available from Sage Publications ( Schools intend to enhance their business analytics courses with social media analytics must prepare IS undergraduates with adequate levels of multidisciplinary knowledge so that students can make convincing and meaningful interpretations. Teachers can overcome the current weakness in communication skills by creating standard templates with a question format allowing students to fill in the gaps to address problem statements, data collection methods, results, and theories that explain and support findings. Instructors can supply the precise questions or help create them via an instructor-led student brainstorming session.

This study's approach is not without limitations. Cooper's analytics framework includes embedded theories and has known "whose reality" issues. Failure to consider this issue risks compromising the framework's effectiveness in actual implementation. The embedded theories may also be insufficient to explain any newly discovered insights. The current assessment also lacks an engagement plan: there is no task to access prior knowledge and help learners become engaged in a new concept. Lastly, the sample size for the student performance evaluation is small (45), and the evaluation involved only a single, one-trimester course.


This paper adapts Cooper's Analytics Framework to formulate a social media analytics teaching assessment with the goal of analyzing and interpreting social media content. This assessment can help IS programs to meet the demand for analytics professionals. For instructors, the assessment structure helps them create reusable teaching resources from other social media content. The assessment results showed that our approach is effective for teaching social analytics to undergraduates in an IS program in a business school environment. Using this assessment, students performed adequately. The mean assignment score was 64%, and 85% of the students passed the assessment. Overall, the course received a "very good" rating. According to our survey, students "agree" that the assignment allowed them to think critically and creatively, and they "strongly agree" that the assignment helped them to learn.

While most colleges teach students to generate results using various analytics tools (e.g., Excel, RapidMiner, Microsoft SQL server), the critical thinking skills and relevant knowledge for interpreting those results require further effort. Since RapidMiner contains advanced charts and statistical analysis such as linear regression, analysis of variance, and RTM extension, instructors could include data visualization queries and hypothesis testing in the assignment. RapidMiner's onomastics name recognition extension (NamSorTM) can deliver a set of operators for mining proper names in all alphabets and languages. This extension could be part of a segmentation exercise. To enhance students' interpretative abilities and to help them derive conclusive implications, future approaches should include relevant readings in social psychology theory, such as social identity, social influence, social learning, and crisis communication.

In the future, we will adopt the analytics framework to construct other assessments with different orientations (e.g., consumer product reviews, political comments) to further validate both the assessment framework and our pedagogy. We will also include an engagement plan with activities that evoke prior learning experiences, and expose existing conceptual understanding and knowledge. We will explore an approach which blends the current assessment structure with ideas from problem- and puzzle-based learning to elicit problem solving and critical thinking skills to address real-life problems (Presthus & Bygstad, 2012). We anticipate that the assessment framework will also be useful for teaching BI&A 3.0, which involves very big data sets. BI&A 3.0 encompasses data from mobile phones, tablets, healthcare sensors, traffic sensors, RFID sensors, Internet of thing (IoT) sensors, environment sensors, and many more. These data typically fall within the computer science and engineering domain. Future teaching and learning research in BI&A 3.0 must rapidly develop teaching resources that can demonstrate innovative insights. We must identify hidden business values from sensor data via information systems as part of a collaborative, innovative community.

Tiong T. Goh

School of Information Management

Victoria University of Wellington

Wellington, New Zealand

Pei-Chen Sun

Graduate Institute for Information and Computer Education

National Kaohsiung Normal University

Kaohsiung, Taiwan


This project is partly supported by the MOST grant 103-2511-S-017-004.


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Tiong-Thye Goh (BSc & MSc Electrical Engineering, Ohio State University; GDipFM, Singapore Institute of Management; MBA (Distinction), Manchester & Wales; PhD Information Systems, Massey University) is a Senior Lecturer with the School of Information Management, Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand. His research focuses on the relationship between technologies, people and society. In particular, Dr Goh's research involves the understanding of social network, emotion computing, analytics, learning science and user's behavior.

Pei-Chen Sun is currently an Associate Professor and serves as System Manager at National Kaohsiung Normal University, Taiwan. He holds a Ph.D. in Management Information Systems from National Sun Yat-Sen University. His current research interests include e-Learning, electronic commerce, and knowledge management. He published in Journal of Information Management, Computers & Education, Journal of Information Science and Engineering, and International Journal of Innovation and Learning.

Table 1. Framework Mapping for Current Assessment

Part A: Analysis subjects,       Analysis subjects: postings
objects and clients              from an online newspaper forum

                                 Analysis clients: social
                                 policy makers, government
                                 agencies, disaster management

                                 Analysis objects: citizen
                                 communication behaviors

Part B: Data quality and         Open data from an online
source                           forum; Data captured through
                                 XML transformation;

                                 Pre-processing at posting

Part C: Orientation and          Orientation: Present
                                 Objective type: description
                                 and performance

Part D: Technical approach       Both a descriptive and
                                 quantitative approach using
                                 text processing,
                                 classification and model

Part E: Presentation             Numeric: frequency count;
                                 Visual: chart, tables, graphic

Part F: Embedded theories and    Social communication, social
reality                          identity, compassionate and
                                 disaster communication and
                                 information diffusion theory

Table 2. Comparing Term Frequency

       Christchurch                        Japan

Term                Term          Term               Term
                    Frequencies                      Frequencies

christchurch/chch   416           japan              331
thoughts            238           people             155
people              204           quake/earthquake   139
prayers             175           god                83
family              128           thoughts           78
god                 112           nuclear            68
love                106           help               67
friends             87            hope               61
hope                86            prayers            61
help                85            time               56
thinking            85            power              54
time                84            world              53
strong              82            nz                 52
quake/earthquake    81            christchurch       45
know                77            tsunami            45
city                75            affected           42
heart               70            think              34
safe                69            pray               32
nz                  68            disaster           31
go                  66            going              31

Table 3. Comparing Compassionate Words

Compassionate   Event A     Event B     Event A      Event B
Words           Frequency   Frequency   Normalized   Normalized

thoughts        238         78          .31          .18
prayers         175         93          .23          .21
love            106         20          .14          .05
thinking        102         49          .13          .11
strong          82          30          .11          .07
heart           94          32          .12          .07
bless           70          29          .09          .07
god             115         83          .15          .19
hope            94          64          .12          .15
sorry           28          9           .04          .02
sad             47          15          .06          .03
xoxoxo          104         8           .14          .02

Table 4. Emoticons and Symbols

Symbol                Event A   Event B

:(                    18        4
=(                    3         --
:-(                   2         3
:[                    --        1
:)                    4         1
x (or multiple x)     70        7
xo (or multiple xo)   34        1

Table 5. Classification Performance Accuracy: 82.02%

            True A   True B   Precision

Predict A   705      153      82.17%
Predict B   64       285      81.66%
Recall      91.68%   65.07%

Table 6. Student Performance

Assessment Criteria                         Student Achievement
                                               (maximum 100)

Identify word frequencies                          96.8
Perform TF-IDF measure                             76.5
Cluster analysis                                   73.5
Identify entities                                  70.3
Analysis of compassion and sympathy                55.4
Sentiment analysis                                 84.9
Analysis of similarities and differences           59.5
Content classification analysis                    75.7
Quantify classification performance                50.3
Discovery of new insights                          26.2
Poster communication                               45.7
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Author:Goh, Tiong T.; Sun, Pei-Chen
Publication:Journal of Information Systems Education
Article Type:Report
Date:Jan 1, 2015
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