Academics - planning and instruction

Trend 3. Comprehensive faculty information management

New instructional models and innovative uses of technology allow higher education faculty to increasingly serve as coaches, advisors, and instructional leads. Their roles have changed because of sociological forces (smartphone usage, social media), technological forces (continuous internet access, immersive content, virtual assistants), and economic forces (higher college costs, reduced federal aid, research sponsorships).

A comprehensive information management system helps faculty digitize research, process and work flows, and publishing processes — all of which are traditionally complex and disaggregated. The new systems can enhance the faculty's role by allowing them to connect to and collaborate with relevant resources and processes.

Institutions are also creating digitally rich learning environments and pedagogically sound learning experiences. They bring in learning and instructional designers to create rigorous, high-quality programs. And institutions increasingly provide faculty with advanced training and professional development to improve the quality of instruction.

Real-time analytics and student dashboards help faculty to provide personalized recommendations and timely interventions.

Academics - planning and instruction

Trend 4. Smart academic planning

The latest trends in credentialing are certificates, badges, stackable credentials, job-related curricula, and micro- and nanodegrees. They disrupt the reliance on traditional degrees and provide students with new alternatives. The growing interest in microcredentials helps workplaces remain competitive by ensuring that employees develop new capabilities. Microcredentials give a way to map these career paths and quantify skills.

Continuous course evaluation and feedback often lead to institutions becoming platforms. This transformation is supported by research that improves instructional methodology and helps institutions keep pace with rapidly changing demands from industry.

Immersive technologies, such as AR and VR, help expand instruction to bring in human-machine interactions. In education, these immersive experiences can range from sitting in a chair with a headset on to standing at a table displaying holographic content to navigating a complex virtual space and interacting with digital objects. These technologies provide engaging ways to help students work out problems in real, virtual, or augmented environments.

Some of the other trending technologies used in>Academics - planning and instruction include:

  • Personalized learning recommendations, skills recommendations (adjacent skills)
  • Sentiment, trend, and predictive analysis
  • Using concept graphs for disambiguation and search suggestions
  • Improving discoverability of content, AI in search (learning to rank)

A large U.S. university collaborated with Infosys to augment, accelerate, and enhance the learning experience of its graduate students. Students leveraged an Infosys learning platform that is built on the cloud and is a mobile-first accessible learning solution. The platform offers guided training in technology and career-based programs designed to make students industry ready.