Big Data technology is a generic technology, which can be applied to any real-world problem that involves a lot of data. Moreover, the use of cloud-based infrastructure to implement the big data technology makes it a cost-effective solution to the big data problem. One of the fundamental sectors that can benefit from this technology is education and research. The education system can use big data analytics to provide better education and administer the institutional operations. Research, which is an extension of education, can use analytics of big scholar data, for diverse applications, to facilitate research at the individual, team and organization level. With that said, the practical implementation and adoption of big data for education and research, collectively referred to as ‘Educational Intelligence’, faces several challenges, particularly in a developing country like India. This research paper explores how cloud-based big data analytics can be applied to Indian education and research and reviews the challenges that need to be addressed before the true benefits of this technology can be obtained.