Understanding Digital Transformation in Higher Education

HolonIQ recently launched a new webinar series focusing on Higher Education Digital Transformation. The series explores the new models, technologies and partnerships emerging in the sector and brings together a growing global network to discuss the future shape of higher education.

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Our first webinar in the series saw nearly 700 individuals register from 63 countries. The session focussed on how and why higher education institutions are building digital into their core capabilities, and the ways in which digital capabilities can be prioritised for impact. Snapshots of the key points are shared below.

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Increasing Pressure for Digital Transformation

Transformations are hard, and digital ones are harder. COVID-19 has accelerated changes that were already on the senior leader agenda, but there are many more forces at play in higher education. These include shifts in government policy and funding, changing perspectives on the future of work and a growing range of non-traditional options for students – not to mention the impact of technology advancements on access and on interaction with the learning experience itself.


Introducing the HEDC Framework

Informed by academic research and with input from higher education leaders globally, the Higher Education Digital Capability (HEDC) Framework shares an overarching view for institutions to map and measure digital capabilities across the learner lifecycle, ultimately to support practical and sustainable approaches to digital services and online learning.

Embracing the complexity of digital from an organisational viewpoint, the HEDC Framework maps institutional capabilities to four connected dimensions across the lifecycle, from Demand & Discovery (DD) to Learning Design (LD), Learner Experience (LX) and Work & Lifelong Learning (WL).

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From Diagnosis to Action

Frameworks are useful for analysis and holistic thinking, but digital transformation demands action, too. Among the tools developed to support the use of the framework is a self-assessment, which can be completed by an individual or by a number of individuals across different functions like marketing, learning design, campus operations and careers. The resulting perspectives on institutional performance and the potential impact of digital are used to inform and drive strategic decision-making and ultimately, procurement decisions.

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Higher Education Network Insights

University leaders from 30 countries recently shared their insights about digital capability in higher education, painting a global picture of performance, gaps and priorities. Digital capability gaps were identified around people and process, more than technology, and whilst Learner Experience (LX) was among the top priorities, it was also ranked lowest in terms of current digital performance.

You can read more about the results of this recent research here.

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What’s Next?

The Higher Education Digital Transformation Webinar Series continues with a focus on the global alternative and micro credential market. Join us for this and future webinars by registering here.

The HolonIQ Global Higher Education Network connects forward-thinking individuals with information and insights to support and sustain digital transformation for higher education, including webinar events and opportunities to participate in global research. Participants can also explore and complete the individual Digital Capability self-assessment – find out more and join your peers here.

Where is this data coming from?

HolonIQ is the world's leading impact intelligence platform. We support governments, institutions, firms and investors, with data insights to power decisions that matter. If you are not already a client, request a demo to learn more about our platform.
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Recent Insights

100 Universities established an OPM, Bootcamp or Pathways partnership in Q1 2022

1 May 2022. 

Bootcamps are directing more resources B2B and B2G, OPMs are growing existing partnerships further and evolving their technology and healthcare programs.

2022 Global Education Market – Open Briefing

6 April 2022. 

Experience the advanced technology at HolonIQ that is powering decisions that matter for the world’s most forward-thinking nations, institutions, companies and investors.

5 Digital Transformation Themes for Higher Education in 2022

31 March 2022. 

Explore key topics and event recordings from our latest deep dive into Digital Transformation in Higher Education.

Higher Education Digital Transformation in Latin America and the Caribbean

2 March 2022. 

Findings from a study into digital transformation in HE, with early insights into how institutions are considering their future after COVID-19.