EDUCAUSE 2023: 2 powerful ways innovation is meeting education
New challenges and technologies have entered the ring.

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For the last few years, education has been rolling with the punches. From the disruptions caused by closures to the challenges of remote learning followed by return-to-classroom concerns, institutions have faced round after round of transitional hardship. But if EDUCAUSE 2023 is any sign, innovation will continue to be in their corner. The conference heavily focused on two areas: artificial intelligence and data analytics. Crucially, it zeroed in on how administration, faculty, and students alike could benefit in these solution areas. With so many predictions and practical applications coming from this year’s conference, let’s explore how a few of them could help your institution rebound off the ropes.

The potential of artificial intelligence

There’s little doubt that AI stands on the brink of reshaping instructional technology. Increasingly, institutions are exploring the use of AI tools to enhance their responsiveness to student inquiries, improve curriculum design, and streamline communication, such as notifications for missing assignments. These innovations are being utilized to create more active learning environments where students are engaged with course materials through discussions, problem-solving, case studies, and other interactive methods.

Generative AI specifically set the conference abuzz with its potential impact on higher ed. While it may not deliver a knockout punch to traditional education, it’s certainly a rattling blow. But instead of trying to resist its influence, educators are seeking ways to harness it for educational improvement. The integration of generative AI and immersive technologies like extended reality (XR) will be especially transformative. By immersing students in virtual environments, institutions have the potential to enhance engagement, providing opportunities for students to explore a wide range of practical application scenarios without leaving the classroom. This innovative approach can significantly enrich the learning experience—and be done securely as well.

The SHI education team tracked the takeaways at EDUCAUSE 2023.

But as with most conversations about AI, a discussion of ethics wasn’t far behind. The EDUCAUSE 2023 consensus seemed to be that, for both students and faculty, AI can be leveraged for more good than ill, enhancing curriculum development, providing hands-on opportunities, and aiding in the creation of more effective lesson plans. What’s more, employers are increasingly seeking graduates with AI experience, making it crucial for students to be well-versed in this technology.

The promise of data analytics

Every competitor needs a good trainer; according to conference panels, there’s none better than data analytics. Driven by innovative methodologies, new software can enhance efficiency by identifying areas where institutional resources may be under- or over-utilized, allowing for better planning and allocation. Its effects in the classroom are staggering as well. Through the analysis of data related to both instructional practices and student outcomes, higher education institutions can magnify faculty productivity with unparalleled insights. This ultimately helps educators fine-tune their pedagogical approaches, thus optimizing student learning. The result is a comprehensive data ecosystem, one which fosters a culture of evidence-based decision-making and continuous improvement.

The data-driven approach is also affecting student admissions and retention. For instance, proper analytics can examine historical enrollment data, academic performance, and market trends to identify programs that have high recruitment and enrollment potential. This next-generation prognostic analysis can help institutions:

  • Refine marketing strategies.
  • Allocate resources more effectively.
  • Enhance student retention rates.
  • Pinpoint outreach to specific populations.
  • Increase student success rates.

As dropout rates continue to wound colleges, faculty and administrators can use data to proactively suture, identifying those who may need additional support and intervention. It’s a colossal innovation that can drive widespread institutional wins, all leading to one place: sustainable growth.

The power of SHI

In light of EDUCAUSE’s exciting announcements, institutions have a fresh opportunity to reimagine the way they approach teaching and learning. For those looking to get in the ring and integrate these technological advancements, SHI is here to help.

With tailored strategies and solutions, our experts can guide you through both artificial intelligence and data analytics, helping you:

  • Provide aspiring surgeons a virtual operating table to bolster their knowledge and dexterity.
  • Maximize your budget with optimized fund distribution.
  • Increase the number of students proudly walking across your graduation stage.

Make sure you measure up to tomorrow’s challenges. Contact SHI today to discuss how you can leverage the latest technologies in higher education.