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Is the future of education data-driven?

by Helen J. Wolf
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The next generation of student engagement is here. These ‘digital natives’ have been consuming digital information and incentives quickly and comfortably for years via devices and platforms such as laptops, iPads, smartphones, and social media. Students now expect consistent, real-time access to information about housing, parking, class schedules, grades, financial aid, and more.

Meanwhile, research from EY Oceania suggests that 65% of students would consider enrolling in online learning anywhere in the world. The report predicts that the impact of COVID will quickly move higher education towards digital, on-demand, and cheaper learning as students — and educators — increasingly demand flexible and work-ready training to prepare them for future prosperity. At the same time, a third of Gen Z respondents say the pandemic will change how they study in the long run.

Is the future of education data-driven?

But are educational institutions in APAC digitally prepared to attract, engage and retain this new generation of ‘hybrid’, globally-oriented students?

Universities are under pressure to innovate

With the increased pressure to boost enrollment and retention and facing a current and future student body rethinking whether, when, and where to go to university, higher institutions should emphasize delivering a remarkable digital experience.

Today’s most progressive universities and colleges do just that. They rise to the challenge by embracing the cloud, unifying their applications and systems, and putting data at the heart of their strategies to enrich the experiences of everyone: students, educators, and alums.

How data analytics help higher education adapt and scale

Technology is important in how educational institutions differentiate themselves, unlock new opportunities to educate new learners through innovative business models, and pursue strategic business initiatives. It is critical to have flexible and scalable digital platforms built on trust that combines data and intelligence in a student-centric way and is supported by a vibrant ecosystem of higher education providers and skilled users.

With many opportunities to deliver a seamless, connected experience for students, educators, administrators, and alums, universities must integrate their data and apps and automate their processes. They need to connect all their different systems.

This integration enables a single source of truth where data and applications can communicate effectively to optimize the experience for everyone, resulting in better recruiting, experience, retention, and student success.

Faster integrations enable universities to keep up with the expectations of today’s students and take the burden of manual work off the hands of end users. Think of all the daily highly repetitive and repetitive processes in universities, such as the application process, tuition reconciliation, and housing assignments – these can and should be automated.

Unlocking the right data-driven solution

Colleges and universities serious about future-proofing their business models are already leveraging innovative, data-driven solutions to modernize their IT infrastructure and drive connected experiences for students, educators, and alums with fast, streamlined, and efficient processes.

AI-powered integration platforms use advanced machine learning algorithms to learn from millions of metadata elements and billions of data streams. That learning is then applied to improve the speed and quality of integrations between data, applications, and business processes.

By leveraging the power of innovative, data-driven platforms, higher education institutions have access to data and analytics essential for better decisions, enabling them to compete at scale and at a lower cost.

Machine learning algorithms can:

Identify trends in student interest in mentoring educators. Proactively empower students with the right resources to help them succeed. Predict integration resource overload so you can take corrective actions to maintain high availability.

The result: improved user productivity and time-to-value, more streamlined processes and information flow, and better results and experiences for students, teachers, and alums.

For example, one platform leverages AI-driven workflows to accelerate all stages of IT integration projects — design, development, deployment, and maintenance — whether on-premises, in the cloud, or in hybrid environments.

The easy-to-use, self-service interface enables expert and citizen integrators to manage all application integration, data integration, API management, B2B integration, and data engineering projects on a single scalable platform.

With a platform like this, higher education institutions can quickly and easily connect all their systems to automate processes, accelerate analytics, and drive modern learning experiences.

The future of education is based on intelligent integration

There is pressure to ensure digital native students are engaged with real-time access to all the information they need. But the future is exciting.

There are now ample opportunities for higher education institutions to leverage digital tools to personalize and optimize student learning, ensuring success through classroom and online learning courses.

To do this, they must have access to insights to predict which classes to offer and how best to meet the diverse needs of individual students. And alums must be identified, tracked, and continuously engaged in securing vital funding.

Without connected data and applications, this is all becoming increasingly difficult, if not impossible. And in the end, the experience suffers – for students, faculty, and alums. That’s why integration is essential to enable universities to deliver the seamless, modern experience that students, faculty, and staff not only expect but deserve, now and in the future.

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