University of Northampton: Higher Education Challenges and the Information Environment
Job presentation for the role of… Senior Marketing Officer – Web & Digital Media …at the University of Northampton What Do You Consider To Be The Key Challenges Facing The HE Sector?How Do You Feel The Development Of A Rich Online Proposition Can Add Value To University Communications? STEPHEN J. STOSE
Part IWhat Do You Consider To Be The Key Challenges Facing The HE Sector?
Ferdinand von “Prondzynski Students sometimes [see HE] solely as the route to a formal qualification to establish their careers…Principle and Vice-Chancellor of Robert industry as a way of providing specialist andGorden University in sometimes quite narrow skills…Aberdeen and governments as a way of keeping people off the dole queues.“Do students learnanything much atcollege?” The educational character of education is sometimes lost in all this and needs to be re-discovered.www.universitydiary.wordpress.com/2011/03/06/do-students-learn- [bold emphasis added]anything-much-at-college/
1. Fees and the commodification of HE Part I 2. Education as community public good What Do You 3. The diversification of education and Consider To Be “business-oriented” services The KeyChallenges Facing 1. Knowledge transfer and university- The HE Sector? business collaboration 1. Teaching quality and teacher- researcher division of labour 2. Digital infrastructure and the digital literacy of staff and students
1. Can classic economics in HE work? Fees and the commodification of higher Capping fees at 9,000 restricts market education plasticity Can government afford, given university fee average (7,500) higher than estimated Price now a “proxy” for quality? Repay, given post-graduation income- dependent?Image source: R.J. Matson
1. Incentive to work harder? Fees and the commodification Fairness? Reduce minority/low- of higher income students? education Marketing to “sell” educational product (business skill sets)? Dis-incentive for potential academic stars/researchers?Image source: R.J. Matson *Leitch Review: Prosperity for all in the Global Economy - World Class Skills, (TSO, 2006)
David Cameron (2006)*:2.Education as a “community public Improving our society’s sense of well-being is, I believe,good the central political challenge of our times. Early posturing…? Thatcher and later the 2010 Browne Report suggest: When not delivering clearly job-related skills, education is a mere “luxury” to “pleasure” or “entertain”… “…the return [ROI] to graduates for studying will be on average around 400%” [Lord Browne] *http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/5003314.stm
What is HE really for? 2. Education for “the good life” and “flourishing” Education as a community public Wider benefits to society* good Quality goods/services, innovation Public education & the arts Safe/clean streets & housing conditions Health and self-esteem Social cohesion and community Attracts more of same (markets the city/country) U.S. Senator Patrick Moynihan: The best way to create a great city is “to create a great university and wait 200 years.” Difficult to measure “good life” Easier to measure earning potential of degree course?*HEFCE „The wider benefits of higher education‟ and „Revisiting the benefits of higher education‟ (www.hefce.ac.uk).
Conclusion: “Liberalise”? Integrate FE in HE? 3. Traditional “university experience” The unavailable/irrelevant? diversification of education and Measure ROI of course-skill sets “business- oriented” services Can traditional research & “reading” culture adapt? Evidence UK has overeducated workforce?* Result in degree value inflation? Leitch Review suggests by 2020 half job market will require graduate-level skills** MA/MSc becoming the “new BA” to differentiate?*See Chevalier, A. and Lindley, J. (2009) Over-education and the Skills of UK graduates Journal of the Royal Statistical Society 172.2**Leitch Review: Prosperity for all in the Global Economy - World Class Skills, (TSO, 2006)
4. “Student choice” Browne Review principle #2:Knowledgetransfer and Misguide student perceptions?university-business 8,000 student studying “forensic science”collaboration 9,500 jobs (filled by chemists/biologists) Are we marketing courses and orienting students appropriately? Internships/professional experience opportunities? Part-time study options/work- study options (FE)?
4. 2003 Lambert Review* Lack of business-university collaborationKnowledge Coursework ≠ employer expectationtransfer and Business: difficult to engage withuniversity- universitiesbusiness More recent surveys show ties improvingcollaboration “Significant benefits of collaboration” „National Employers Skills Survey 2007‟; Learning and Skills Council, May 2008 (http://research.lsc.gov.uk). Student innovation opportunities? Social enterprise HEIF (HE Innovation Funding) Student “spin-outs”*„Lambert Review of Business-University Collaboration‟; HM Treasury, December 2003 (www.hm-treasury.gov.uk).
Will research suffer? 5. Research Assessment Exercise (RAE) incentives: Teaching minimised Teaching quality Publication record glorified and teacher- Good researchers = bad teachers ? researcher Good teachers = bad researchers? division of labour Professors as charismatic grant-writing networkers, teaching a distraction Academics justify “economic impact” of research, academic freedom? Will teaching suffer? If fees go up, the expectations of 65% of students increase* Will KIS (Key Information Sets) help guide expectation? “Teaching to” new model, affect evaluations? New technologies change teaching/contact hours*Pearson Centre for Policy and Learning: Blue Skies: New thinking about the future of higher education)
New generation grew up with Internet,6. expect excellent infrastructureDigitalinfrastructure Staff digital literacy < student?and the digitalliteracy of staff Blended learning (VLEs) creates newand students demands/stresses on staff? Library adapt to workspace demands and new learning styles? Improve student-staff interactions? Obliterate personalized “university experience”
Part IIHow Do You Feel The Development Of A Rich Online Proposition Can Add Value To University Communications?
Janet Beer “ ICT systems clearly have the capacity to assistVice-chancellor,Oxford-Brooks the HE sector to improve staff skills, to makeUniversity administrative processes more user-friendly, accessible and cheaper to run, and to supportReport to JISC the provision of flexible and rich teaching andKey Issues Facing UK learning environments that meet studentHEIs: Staff quality,experience, skills and expectations and improve learning outcome.skill gapswww.jisc.ac.uk/media/documents/committees/jlt/29/08b.pdf But doing it well…?
Part II Times Higher Education. 18 February 2010
Frankensites? Professors, departments, students and staff posting conflicting materials Different technologies, redundancy, no central hub, branding inconsistency, etc. Digital governance? Web can build or damage reputation!! Portfolio Communications* League table of “cyber-coverage” or “buzz” Oxford 79th Sheffield Hallam & Southampton Solent top of charts *http://portfolio-web.net/UniversitiesORA/main_page.html
Branding and the information Part II environment How Do You FeelThe Development Of A Rich OnlineProposition Can Add Value To University Information interactions and Communications? communication
Branding and the informationBranding and the environment, for… information environment Potential students Current students & staff University-business & alumni Information interactions and communication Staff Student Staff Staff University Community
Website = brochure search – click – 10 sec – 30 sec – 1 minBranding and the information user-friendly, interactive environment Clean, simple, user-friendly, interactive, graphical Best-practices (e.g., W3C) Webmaster tools, SEO, keywords, <meta> tags, Google Analytics Points of differentiation! Branding matches corporate goals
Recruitment, retention, and life-long relationshipBranding and the information Student satisfaction promotes itself environment Student imagination! Build image of “university town” experience”! Course structure, modules within courseWith new fees, Professors/instructors photos & their interestsvalue for Costs & what skill-sets gained (KIS data helps)money Accommodation & Campus facilities (sports & studentimportant! centres, pub, disco) Portfolio Centre, social enterprise, arts & fashion Mounts music scene, Derngate Theatre, Fishmarket
Branding and the information Information environmentinteractions and Potential students communication Current students & staff University-business & alumni Information interactions and communication Staff Student Staff Staff University Community
VLE Courseware (for all courses) Informationinteractions and Reading lists, hand-in assignments, receive communication assessments etc. Module student-student/student-instructor Students forums Course module blogs (archived, standardised) Syllabi of current/past course modules Staff Staff–student Q & A forums University forms / processes
Staff Intranet Coordinated discussions Information Q & A forums (archived)interactions and Training manuals/tutorials communication Room booking, guest scheduling Directories (students, courses, instructors) Staff Project management software? OpenAtrium, Basecamp Centralised discussion/decision/feedback Case-tracking, to-do-lists, scheduling Resource allocation, cost estimate Staff Customer Relationship Management? “Customers” = students/alumni, donors, faculty, business partners Integrates use across departments *http://portfolio-web.net/UniversitiesORA/main_page.html
Visible links (front page: large images as teasers!) Information Events management/calendar visible to communityinteractions and communication Showcase student, faculty and staff achievements YouTube Channels Flickr Photo streams University LinkedIn Profiles News feeds/widgets and events, notices, emergencies Twitter feeds Faculty & student blogs University-community/business special Community relationships? Social Media!! Facilitates two-way open conversations
Information interactions and communication The Conversation Prism* Social Media is a conversation!“The art of listening, learning and sharing” *Solis, B. (2008). "Introducing The Conversation Prism." http://www.briansolis.com/2008/08/introducing-conversation-prism/
Proper management can make or break! Information interactions and Always monitor daily (content policing) communication Tight coordinated governance Challenges to usingsocial media effectively Let students manage? Positive and negative conversations about brand… Consistent corporate branding Facebook great for admissions Web team to identify user-demand
Impact and benefits of social media to date Information interactions and communication Social Media: Key Challenges Jadu Research Report (2009): An Investigation into the Challenges, Application and Benefits of SocialMedia in Higher Education Institutions
Current challenges for HEIs in adopting social media Social Media: Key Challenges Jadu Research Report (2009): An Investigation into the Challenges, Application and Benefits of SocialMedia in Higher Education Institutions Rating Average
60 unique responses were received from 44 HEIs across the UK, with 36 EnglishJadu Research Universities; 3 out of the 9 Welsh universities; 4 out of the 19 ScottishRespondent Profile universities and an Irish university contributing. Responses were received from respondents representing a wide range of departments and roles including - Web management, marketing, media and communications, learning and development, business, libraries and IT management and services.