EDUCAUSE recently published their five most popular videos of 2017. One that caught my eye was Students of the Future. This is great summary of where higher ed technology trends are taking us. The video emphasizes the following “hot topics.”
Slow Death of Traditional Degrees
While the “sheepskin” in higher ed will still be around for awhile, educational documentation will more frequently take the form of competencies and mastery of skills demonstrated in a variety of ways. The “credentials” of a student will be a collection of “requirements, artifacts, and other evidence of learning competencies” that the student will control rather than the institution. Educational paths of study will become increasingly customizable. The means that the role and impact of traditional degrees will change and diminish.
We’re already seeing a trend here. Universities (including mine) are scrambling to figure out how to 1) generate predictive analytics and 2) use them. We see a subcategory of this being applied to “informed advising” and at TAMU, this is the tip of the spear for analytics. I believe we are at the advent of this topic, and it will take a while to mature this area.
Broadening of Student Demographics
The definition of the “traditional” student is broadening. We must increase our diversity, equity, and inclusion, otherwise, the market will leave us and go to other educational settings that are more agile.