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For Release:

Joanne Dehoney
Chief of Staff

October 17, 2011, Boulder, Colorado—EDUCAUSE, the professional association for information technology in higher education, announced today a new initiative to advance analytics at America’s colleges and universities. EDUCAUSE will work with the higher education community to provide thought leadership and education to develop institutional capability for analytics.

"Sophisticated uses of data and benchmarking have revolutionized business and industry,” said Diana Oblinger, President and CEO of EDUCAUSE. “These same techniques can deepen our understanding of learner success, improve our ability to track progress, and help us make the best decisions about campus resources."

Analytics relies heavily on information technology systems and services to draw meaning from massive data sets. The strategic value of analytics includes improved institutional productivity, decision-making, and learner success. While better decision-making about campus operations is an important aspect of analytics, its potential to support students is of paramount interest. Today, analytics-based early interventions with students have demonstrably improved course completion rates. In the future, analytics will enable highly personalized learning environments characterized by adaptive testing and content displays, point-of-need help, and academic support services tailored to individual needs.

The EDUCAUSE program has three primary objectives: to frame the issues associated with analytics in higher education; to develop education, resources, and professional development programs; and to conduct a major benchmarking study of the state of analytics in higher education. EDUCAUSE will work closely with experts and community members throughout the program, which will culminate in a national summit for higher education leaders in fall 2012.

"Analytics holds transformative promise for education, but the field is still in the developmental stages," said Oblinger. "EDUCAUSE's program to mature the field comes at the right moment for higher education."

This project is made possible through a grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.


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EDUCAUSE is a nonprofit association and the foremost community of IT leaders and professionals committed to advancing higher education. EDUCAUSE programs and services are focused on analysis, advocacy, community building, professional development, and knowledge creation because IT plays a transformative role in higher education. EDUCAUSE supports those who lead, manage, and use information technology through a comprehensive range of resources and activities. For more information, visit