This paper offers a personal view on the interplay between the multiple roles of academic and commercial researcher and classroom teacher. A series of vignettes expose a variety of lessons. Some of the vignettes are about the way that being an educator of human–computer interaction has informed my practice as an academic researcher about HCI. Some are about the different ethical expectations when using educational practice as part of commercial research as opposed to academic research. We also see how the inside knowledge of being a practitioner researcher offers unique insights into rich data and how product orientation can expose gaps in research, surprisingly not so different from the way that teaching students does: with neither developers nor students can you hide fuzzy thinking behind long words! While there are conflicts that need to be carefully managed, both academic and commercial research have powerful synergies with educational practice.
Keywords: educational technology, research ethics, learning analytics, academic life.
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