Sept. 22, 2016

SMART Lab Launches the 2016 Election Analytics Challenge

Students in the Scripps College of Communication will compete to analyze social media conversations surrounding the heated 2016 presidential race

ATHENS, Ohio ­­­­— The recently inaugurated Ohio University SMART Lab announced the 2016 SMART Lab Analytics Challenge. The event gives students in the Scripps College of Communication the opportunity to gain real world experience and insight in analytics from the 2016 presidential race.

The SMART Lab is an innovative research lab where faculty and students examine social media analytics and big data in order to gain insight about the modern world. The Election Challenge is open to all students in the college of communication but is mainly targeted at students pursuing the Social Media Analytics Certificate who have registered in the social media analytics course being taught by Dr. Khan this fall.

Students will analyze and interpret social media conversations surrounding the 2016 Presidential Election in November. The challenge will provide valuable insight and expertise in the social media field. The purpose of the Election Analytics Challenge is to bring fresh insight to what voters say about the overall presidential race, the candidates, and the news surrounding the election.

Laeeq Khan, Director of the SMART Lab said, “One of the visions of the SMART Lab is to spread social media analytics know-how in an easy-to-understand format so that individuals can attain meaningful intelligence about issues of importance especially in an election season”.

Utilizing a toolkit of analytics platforms, students will analyze millions of social media conversations on the Internet. This includes data from Twitter, Facebook, blogs, and mainstream news sources. Participants will meet regularly to discuss their findings and curate story ideas.

To find out more about how to get involved with the 2016 Election Analytics Challenge, please email Dr.Khan at or

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About SMART Lab

The Social Media Analytics Research Team (SMART) Lab is an initiative of Ohio University’s Scripps College of Communication, to foster and advance research in social media analytics. The SMART Lab offers quality education and training in data sciences and communication, providing an opportunity for graduate and undergraduate students to hone their technical and creative skills with analytics especially in the context of social media.

Media Contacts:

Megan Lewis, Social Media Manager, SMART Lab


Dr. Laeeq Khan, Director, SMART Lab