Technology is disrupting businesses around the world, leaving no industry unturned. Naturally, digital disruption is making significant waves in the education industry too; in fact, as new technologies emerge and root themselves in the marketplace, schools and universities are figuring out ways to prepare students for a new type of workplace. And to stay relevant, they need to be at the forefront of change and innovation.
Every year the higher education industry invests huge amounts of money and resources into marketing. An investigation by the The Guardian revealed that collectively, UK universities spend millions of pounds on marketing each year in a bid to stand out from the competition and attract candidates. One university’s marketing spend in 2017-18 totalled £3.4 million.
In the past, a good degree coupled with a certain amount of ambition would almost guarantee you a decent job in your chosen field. Anyone who’s graduated in the last decade or so will know that’s no longer the case. Both the jobs market and higher education is markedly more competitive - and more people are deciding to study than ever before.
In June 2019 University of Leeds announced the launch of its trailblazing Centre for Immersive Technologies, based in the Leeds Institute for Data Analytics. Their new learning hub is “designed to harness the power of immersive technologies, to upskill the next generation and push the boundaries of possibilities in research and education.” Over 80 researchers from a range of University subjects use the centre's world class facilities to focus on five priority areas – health, transport, education, productivity and culture. We caught up with project manager, Gareth Frith, to find out more about how the School of Medicine is utilising the space and its technologies...
Personalisation is a much talked about topic in the student admissions sphere, with many universities taking a keen interest in how they can leverage the data they have to increase enrolment rates through personalised communications.
Alternative models for learning, online courses and economic strains are just a handful of things turning the higher education sector into a hyper competitive playing field. In some ways, post-graduate education is facing an even larger set of challenges. Rising costs mean many people can no longer justify the expense, especially if they can gain expertise elsewhere.
In her role as Head of Change: Student Experience at Jisc, Sarah Knight leads the teams supporting the Digital Experience Insights service, as well as a team developing the Jisc Building Digital Capability service to aid the development of staff and student digital capabilities. Sarah has worked for Jisc for 15 years; during that time she has been at the helm of a number of transformation projects on curriculum design, digital literacies and learners’ experiences of technology.
Immersive technologies - including virtual reality and augmented reality - have the potential to revolutionise the way universities deliver course content, enabling learners to access spaces and engage with experiences that might otherwise be unavailable to them. This article explores how two institutions are harnessing the power of immersive technologies to aid research and make a positive impact on the wider community.
Student and alumni engagement is critical for creating a sense of community, both on campus and in other spheres - like online platforms, for instance. It is also important for university promotion; as well as academic acumen, prospective students are looking to “buy in” to an institution's culture and ethos. So what can universities do to embed a meaningful culture - one that makes students and staff feel connected to the institution long term?