Data & Higher Ed:
January 25, 2023
How to leverage data at Higher Ed institutions?
Business Schools are no strangers to data and insights. Helping students understand and apply data and evidence for the purpose of efficiency, innovation or competitive advantage is their stock in trade. However business schools also tend to be seated within colleges and universities, which have been hampered in their efforts to use data well by legacy systems, incomplete data, the complexity of student privacy regulations and more.
In a recent webinar, we discussed the topic with top business schools and higher education leaders. Thanks to the following experts for sharing their insights:
– Andre Spicer | Dean, Bayes Business School
– Professor Dilshad Sheikh, CMBE, CMgr CCMI | Dean of the Faculty of Business at Arden University
– Julio Villalobos | Director, CXO Strategic Industry Advisor, Salesforce
– Valerie Sutton | Director, Career Services Office at Harvard Graduate School of Education
5 Takeaways from Experts: How to leverage data at Higher Ed institutions
- Data is deepening our understanding of the student experience.
- Data is increasingly helping business schools meet students “where they are”.
- Higher Ed institutions need to simplify to make the best use of complex data.
- Higher Ed institutions that bust existing data silos will lead.
- Advances in technology are changing assessment right now, as well as the types of data we have about student learning.
- A data audit for your Higher Ed institution
1. Data is deepening our understanding of the student experience
Julio Villalobos, Salesforce CXO, has seen firsthand the importance of first impressions for students. Students who have a great onboarding experience have been found to be 35x more likely to have a great overall experience.
2. Data is increasingly helping business schools meet students “where they are.”
Prof Dilshad Sheikh, Dean of the faculty of business at Arden University, has students from all over the world taking courses online, in person, hybrid, and across multiple country settings. Data has helped her and her faculty gain a better understanding of the disparate qualifications students enter with, so they can provide the supports needed to help students succeed.
3. Higher Ed institutions need to simplify to make the best use of complex data.
Bayes Business School dean Prof Andre Spicer is bullish about the future of data, but pragmatic about the current state of affairs for many institutions. Legacy data systems are many, and serve disparate masters (e.g., compliance, rankings, etc). He pointed to a recent survey which found that medium-sized organisations ask employees to use 89 separate applications in their work, and large organisations 187. Meanwhile, we know that our ability to use any application well tops out in the single-digits. Before business schools and higher education will be able use the data they have at their disposal, simplification and intentionality of data systems is needed.
4. Higher Ed institutions that bust existing data silos will lead.
Fragmented and siloed data have a chilling effect on an institution’s ability to use data well. Harvard’s Valerie Sutton, a leader in career theory and student services, uses an end-to-end approach to support and extend the student experience, collecting data before application and matriculation, and connecting that all the way through to the alumni experience. Moreover, business schools need to think outside their own data “houses”. Both Valerie and Julio emphasize the power of connecting into external labour market data to drive current student placements, and market insights. Julio highlighted one leading business school that is carefully analyzing “the skills that the labour market is currently chasing,” to better inform courses, curriculum, career advising and more.
5. Advances in technology are changing assessment right now, as well as the types of data we have about student learning.
Much like the pandemic changed the conversation about the use of technology in education, generative AI tools like ChatGPT are having a seismic impact on how assessment is conducted in business schools. Dilshad pointed to the rise in authentic assessment, where students create vlogs or present in real-time to an industry leader, and Andre shared how faculty at Bayes are using AI to generate new and different cases and prompts. These changes, coupled with the need to prepare future business leaders to use AI-tools ethically and well, mean that what and when and how we measure learning in business education may be entering a period of significant change.
Interested in a complimentary data audit for your Higher Ed institution?
Whether you’re a Business School or a Higher Education Institution, we’re offering a free data audit session with our education consultants.
We can help you identify and address the challenges you’re facing managing data in your institution. We’ll analyze your current systems and provide actionable recommendations to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of your data usage, streamline internal processes and reduce costs to drive success for your institution.
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