Top 10 IT Issues and Strategic Technologies

Trends and Forecasts to Inform IT Planning
Understand what's important and where to focus with these annual reports.

Higher education leaders and decision makers use the Top 10 trends and forecasts to know what's important and where to focus in their IT planning and management activities.

The Top 10 lists are derived with community input and support from EDUCAUSE staff. The IT issues list is developed by a panel of experts comprised of IT and non-IT leaders, CIOs, and faculty members and then voted on by EDUCAUSE members in an annual survey.

2017 IT Issues resources include the EDUCAUSE Review feature article, video, infographic, and more.

2017 Strategic Technologies resources include EDUCAUSE Center for Analysis and Research reports, interactive graphic, data almanacs, and more. For EDUCAUSE members only.

2017 Top 10 IT Issues

  1. Information security
  2. Student success and completion
  3. Data-informed decision making
  4. Strategic leadership
  5. Sustainable funding
  6. Data management and governance
  7. Higher education affordability
  8. Sustainable staffing
  9. Next-generation enterprise IT
  10. Digital transformation of learning

2017 Top 10 Strategic Technologies

Because of a tie for the 10th spot, this year's list includes 11 technologies.

  1. Active learning classrooms (e.g., student-centered, technology-rich learning environments)
  2. Technologies for improving analysis of student data
  3. Incorporation of mobile devices in teaching and learning
  4. Uses of APIs
  5. Mobile apps for enterprise applications
  6. Blended data centers (on-premises and cloud-based)
  7. Technologies for planning and mapping students' educational plans
  8. Database encryption
  9. Technologies for triggering interventions based on student behavior or faculty input
  10. Mobile device management
  11. Technologies for offering self-service resources that reduce advisor workloads

Insights You Can Use

"The Top 10 list is an excellent gauge of how we fare compared to the higher ed industry at large. It helps us understand the key trends in IT for our industry, guides our planning about where we may need to invest, and provides us with confirmation about where we are already allocating resources. Last year I published a document highlighting where our IT strategic initiatives were specifically aligned with the Top 10, which served as confirmation that we were headed in the right direction."—Mark Roman, CIO, Simon Fraser University, and President, CUCCIO

"The IT Issues and Strategic Technologies reports help me substantiate that issues of importance to our university are also important issues for most of higher education."—Daniel Drenkow, CIO, Augustana University

"The Top 10 IT research helps us understand the landscape of what other institutions are facing, and informs our planning and strategic plans. When we were developing the college's first five-year IT strategic plan, members of the committee reviewed a number of top 10 lists and related articles, along with benchmarks and other reports. These in turn helped us to identify trends and gaps in our thinking and infrastructure. We could not have developed the plan we did without these valuable resources."—David Weil, Associate Vice President, Digital Instruction and Information Services, Ithaca College

"I use the EDUCAUSE Top 10 research to validate past practices, align my future technology plan, and justify budget allocation based upon industry alignment."—Stephen DiFilipo, CIO, University of Texas, Institute for Transformational Learning

2018 Top 10 Survey

To identify the 2018 Top 10, higher ed IT leaders receive survey invitations from EDUCAUSE.

  • August 28: Survey opens

  • September 15: Survey closes

If you have not received the invitation and would like to complete the survey, contact benchmarking@educause.edu.

Get a preview of 2018 findings at the EDUCAUSE Annual Conference, October 31–November 3, 2017, in Philadelphia.