Higher Education has seen many changes due to Covid-19. The needs and demands of students are rapidly changing along with the development of educational technology. These are the trends to look out for in terms of student needs when it comes to the future of higher education institutions.

Student Career Pathways are Top of Mind

Students place a high value on how their institution is preparing them for a career post-graduation. Data highlights that career concerns start before students attend a college/university. To remain relevant, institutions must focus on attracting more students and increasing alumni connections with a focus on career pathways, as well as strong links to professional bodies and workplace organizations that promote quality and high standards in their membership

This then also raises the issue that with so many more choices, pathways, industry qualifications, and the expense of a university education how do colleges, etc. make their offerings attractive? Universities must demonstrate the value they bring to the table to remain relevant.

Flexible Learning Options

Covid-19 has highlighted the possibility of remote or online learning, where students do not have to be on campus daily. Flexible course options are a top consideration for prospective students and have to be taken into account going forward.

Learner and Institution Success Require Innovation

The adoption of new models and student-centric innovation requires the use of an agile platform to empower faculty and staff throughout the entire learner journey. The sudden shutdown proved the long-term worth of digital strategies in areas like virtual campus tours, digital advertising, virtual advising, and hybrid courses.

Keep in mind that university innovation and Edtech innovation don’t have to be at odds with each other. At the same time, the needs of students should always trump the needs of technology and innovation. It is a fine balance.

Information Dissemination vs Cerebral Personal Transformation

Information is available freely on the internet. That is why it has become extremely important to deliver educational experiences. Approaches to teaching and learning need to be focused on expanding knowledge application and personal development, rather than retaining information.

Intentional and Relevant Learning Content

Quality and relevance of content become increasingly relevant. Institutions can no longer rely on prescribed textbooks and articles only. They need to generate their own content and adapt learning to be more personalised. Technology and the available data play a big role in teaching and learning from an adaptive and/or personalised approach.

Growth in the Importance of Advanced Technologies in Learning

The introduction of advanced technologies including VR, cloud-based LMS, and AI will drive the market growth. In short, AI is coming, don’t say you weren’t warned!

Gaming and gamification have already become part of new, innovative teaching and learning methods, and will no doubt become increasingly part of the learning experience in the future – engaging learners in their world.

Datafication, Privacy and Student activism

With the growth of the use of technology in education and the development of remote or distance learning monitoring (such as proctoring tools for assessments), the issue of privacy is growing. Data security and student information are contentious issues, and while we use data to improve learning experiences, students are becoming more actively concerned with privacy matters, which means we are seeing an uprise in student activism in response.