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The Space Between—and the Secret of Scale

Understanding how best to scale information technology is a challenge facing all segments of higher education, but perhaps the campus area most critically affected is administrative/enterprise systems.

Future Slant: Analytics

Diana Oblinger and Joanne Dehoney

This is the second in a blog series describing five “metatrends,” drawn from a review of articles in industry IT press, that affect CIOs in all IT sectors.:

Each post in the Future Slant blog will describe one of these trends, suggesting implications for higher education.


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Challenges of Scale

Diana Oblinger and Joanne Dehoney
Higher education information technology is shaped by trends in the academy—and in information technology. Well-recognized issues in higher education include affordability, productivity, college completion, and workforce development, to name a few. At the same time, IT capabilities and service models are changing rapidly, independent of sector. These changes create additional pressures on CIOs and IT departments.
To help higher education IT professionals better understand how the CIO role is evolving, this series of blog posts will describe five “metatrends,” drawn from a review of articles in industry IT press.

The Post-Digital Potential of Man and Machine

At the beginning of his article Michael Roy, Dean of Library and Information Services and Chief Information Officer at Middlebury College, states: “Many campuses are witnessing the birth of a new field of inquiry called the digital humanities, which applies computational methods to humanistic inquiry, provides new methods for presenting scholarship online, and encourages novel forms of collaboration.” Accordingly, he and other writers in this issue of EDUCAUSE Review explore the extent to which the hu

Staying "Plugged In"

In the March/April 2014 EDUCAUSE Review, Susan Grajek and the members of the 2013–2014 EDUCAUSE IT Issues Panel outline this year’s top-ten IT issues for colleges and universities. Their descriptions of the issues are clear and their recommendations highly useful. Campus IT leaders and staff must focus on the present—but they must also stay “plugged in” in order to anticipate the future and be ready for whatever comes next.

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Lessons of Leadership

The January/February 2014 issue of EDUCAUSE Review features EDUCAUSE award winners from 2013, individuals who exemplify the best of our profession. Their articles highlight how to frame challenging issues, the importance of transformative people, and the value of peer networks.

Getting Your Ducks in a Row: Governance, Risk, and Compliance

Information technology is critical to higher education. But unless aligned with the institution’s goals and based on sound policies and procedures, information technology will not be trusted, reliable, efficient, or effective. This alignment can be furthered through governance, risk, and compliance (GRC) programs. Such programs are about adding value through planning and decision-making—that is, about getting your ducks in a row.

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Higher Education in the Connected Age: Pathways

BYOD. DIY learning. "There's an app for that." Such fragmentation and consumerization might seem dysfunctional for higher education, yet surprisingly, the result is a vibrant system—thanks to the connections inherent in information technology. Connecting is about reaching out and bringing in, about building synergies to create a whole that is greater than the sum of its parts. Connecting is a powerful metaphor. Everyone and everything—people, resources, data, ideas—are interconnected: linked and tagged, tweeted and texted, followed and friended. Anyone can participate.

Disrupted or Designed?

Information technology is often a disruptor. Disruption connotes something unplanned, disorderly, or confusing. Yet though information technology can disrupt, it can also be a powerful element of design. As higher education IT professionals, we believe in the power of technology. We also believe in the fundamental mission of higher education. Our task is to design a better future thanks to our understanding of technology and higher education’s mission—by using technology in service to education. How do we turn disruption into intentional design?

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What does it take to address the 2013 top-10 IT issues and be a CIO? Grit.

Grit, it seems, may be as essential as intelligence. People with grit persevere. They have a passion for their goal. They invest effort, in spite of setbacks, to accomplish long-term goals — goals they believe are worth having. A person with grit approaches accomplishment as a marathon; their advantage is stamina. Excellence and achievement take time. New skills must be developed.

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