This article reports on the findings from a literature review of research on data use in education published in English, German and Scandinavian languages. The review is inspired by methods for systematic mapping. The analysis illustrates how the characteristics of the total corpus of 129 articles on data use in education vary across different contexts, countries and regions. In all contexts, the studies primarily investigate structures and systems around data use. While the Anglophone studies are mainly empirical and often concerned with implementation and effectiveness in terms of data use, the studies published in German and Scandinavian languages focus more heavily on discussions and analytical reflections upon the developments of data use in education. Six investigative modes of studies on data use that can contribute to creating a more nuanced understanding of research on data use in education are identified, presented and discussed.