Asynchronous Online Mathematics Learning Support: An Exploration of Interaction Data to Inform Future Provision

ORCID 0000-0002-8782-3987

Document Type



Education | Higher Education | Mathematics | Online and Distance Education | Scholarship of Teaching and Learning | Science and Mathematics Education

Publication Details

Teaching Mathematics and its Applications: An International Journal of the IMA

© The Author(s) 2021. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of The Institute of Mathematics and its Applications. All rights reserved. For permissions, please email:


Over the past 30 years, higher education institutions (HEIs) worldwide have been grappling with the difficulties experienced by many students entering higher education due to their poor pre-entry core mathematical skills. In the Republic of Ireland and the UK, the provision of mathematics learning support (MLS) is the approach most commonly adopted by HEIs to deal with this problem, providing free one-to-one mathematical support and/or workshops for students. However, despite the availability of such supports and research that suggests that engagement with these supports can have a positive impact on student retention and progression, ensuring high levels of student engagement with these supports remains a significant challenge. In more recent years, some institutions have started to provide online MLS which takes many different forms but mainly provide links to websites, revision notes, past exam papers, etc. In light of the COVID-19 pandemic and the need for many to resort to remote teaching, it would appear the successful provision of online mathematics support is set to become increasingly important over the coming years. This paper will examine student interaction data with one such online MLS provision, hosted within a virtual learning environment. The interaction data will be analysed in order to gain a better understanding of the level of student engagement with this resource and the content most frequently accessed. This analysis will be used to inform the future development and enhancement of the resource so as to encourage student engagement.