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Data

6/13/2018

Every institution has access to data that can help to drive more effective decision making. The challenge is that often this data resides in silos around campus. By democratizing data access across the institution and building a data-focused campus culture, staff are empowered to make more effective data-driven decisions.  

Administrators, faculty and staff at the State University of New York College at Old Westbury are committed to the success of every one of their nearly 5,000 students. So when the sprawling Long Island school started looking for a new campus card system a few years ago, all roads led to TouchNet OneCard VIP.

6/27/2018

The demographics of today’s higher ed learners are shifting dramatically. Those once considered nontraditional learners—adults looking to change career paths, workers returning to school for certifications or students requiring flexible learning paths—have become the norm.

How must institutions respond to these changing demographics to meet the evolving demands of these “new traditional” students? How can institutions use technology and data to drive student success and support continuous improvement in this changing environment?

Why are more institutions moving their key systems to the cloud?

5/10/2018

Predictive analytics can serve as the foundation of student success efforts. By drawing together data from disparate campus sources and systems, predictive analytics software can enable institutional leaders to predict the likelihood of student attrition, identify at-risk students, and match them with the right resources that can help them succeed.

4/10/2018

While gathering various types of assessment data can be vital to help college and university leaders to identify areas for improvement and to influence strategic decision making, it can be challenging to make sense of this data, and to act accordingly. Benchmarking can address this challenge, by providing a better understanding of the data, identifying which results are outstanding or concerning, and helping higher ed leaders to establish goals for their institution.

Colleges and universities have become a favorite target of cybercriminals because of the sheer volume of student information they handle. This is because payment processing happens all over campus, from the ticketing office to the bursar’s office to the cafeteria. In addition to endangering students and damaging the reputation of the institution, the financial costs of a data breach could include legal representation, fines, and the expense of notifying impacted individuals.

College and university leaders manage large datasets that are compiled across people, departments and systems. Producing quality performance reports, institutional effectiveness measures, and academic data can be a challenge in today’s environment. In addition to maintaining reliable and accurate data, higher ed leaders are continually asked to do more work, with more depth—but without additional resources. 

Scott A. Bass is the provost at American University in Washington, D.C.

How many databases does your campus administer in the broad area of student support? American University uses more than 36 databases for different student-related administrative and learning management functions—yet, there is little to no integration.

Robert Miller is vice president for enrollment management of Centenary University.

Ubiquitous in the business world, big data is being adopted by higher education, particularly in the area of recruitment. With stagnant or declining recruitment budgets and increased competition for students, leveraging the data most colleges capture is a cost-effective approach that can yield significant results.

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