Can We Expect a Full Transition to Online Courses in Higher Education in 2023

Can We Expect a Full Transition to Online Courses in Higher Education in 2023

After serving as the Group Commercial Director for Oxford International since 2017, Lil was promoted to the position of Group Chief Executive Officer in 2019. After taking the helm at Oxford International during the Covid19 crisis, Lil was able to steer the Group through significant business change and development and propel massive growth across the Academic Division. Lil has worked as the Director of International Recruitment for Cavendish College, the Head of International Operations for South Thames College, and most recently as the International Director at BPP University, giving her more than 20 years of experience in senior management and leadership in the educational sector. Presently, Lil is the Group CEO of Oxford International, as well as a member of the Advisory Board for IDP Connect, a founding member and advisor to Business Women in Education, and a Non-Executive Director of Corndel Limited.

I’ll start by stating the obvious: today’s college students have a high level of technological literacy. I think we’re all aware of this, but I also see that we haven’t fully understood the ramifications of our digital savvy. This generation has grown up with digital technologies such as search engines, social media, and mobile payment systems. In fact, a recent survey found that 67% of students expect their university’s digital platforms to be of the same quality as popular sites like Facebook, Amazon, and Netflix. This is a far-reaching goal, but it shouldn’t be completely out of reach for many academic institutions.

As a result of the pandemic, businesses and government agencies rushed to “digitise everything.” Universities’ digital offerings were undoubtedly boosted by the pandemic’s requirement for the delivery of education solely through digital and online means. Data suggests that in 2022–23, nearly one-third of higher education courses will combine face-to-face teaching with online learning, so many universities will continue to offer these services even after the pandemic has passed.

However, for those who grew up with computers, a digital experience is not only expected, but demanded. In fact, 91 percent of students demand that an institution’s online resources match or exceed those available in person. This is true not only of their academic performance, but also of their ability to handle other aspects of university life, integrate into the campus culture, and keep themselves healthy and happy. In the eyes of many, academic institutions’ digital offerings are falling short. Simply put, online education is a necessity in the context of higher education. It must be more than that if it is to be noticed. To provide students with the kind of service they’ve come to expect from their preferred commercial digital platforms, many universities see 2023 as an opportunity to go beyond the basics of digitalization and embed it into the ethos of their institution.

The year 2023 will be the beginning of the widespread adoption of digital learning platforms in the world of higher education.

Many different kinds of digitalization exist, from creating databases to designing online feedback systems. In a recent report, the OECD’s Higher Education Policy team concluded that digitalization “holds enormous potential to enhance quality, equity, and efficiency in higher education.” The future of higher education relies heavily on digitalization for a variety of reasons, including the automation of time-intensive processes, the expansion of educational opportunities, the reduction of operational costs, and the satisfaction of rising student expectations.

Historically, educational institutions were hesitant to adopt digitalization due to worries about the associated costs and potential drawbacks. Despite initial delays caused by the pandemic, universities have recently begun to take advantage of digitalization’s benefits.

At a time when pressure is increasing on universities, embracing digitalization can make a huge difference. The efficiency brought about by digital solutions saves both time and money, which is especially important in light of recent cuts to the sector’s funding and the impending global recession. It’s crucial that the industry as a whole realises the value of digital technologies and adopts them.

There needs to be a new wave of student-centered innovation in higher education, and I believe that this should begin in 2023, when institutions finally stop resisting digitalization.

Practical applications of digital tools

Practical applications of digital tools

Harnessing the potential of digitalization to support academic pursuits is essential to the future of student success in higher education. Consequently, universities and colleges can’t afford to be lagging behind, or they’ll risk letting their students down.

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Many facets of a student’s time in school could be improved by the introduction of cutting-edge digital enhancements. Accessible, streamlined, and time-saving digital processes can be implemented across the entire student life cycle, from application to graduation. Modernize these administrative procedures, say students accustomed to slick digital platforms in their daily lives. Crucially, if the educational infrastructure can be optimised, universities and students can put their attention where it belongs: on learning.

One of the most crucial roles that digitalization plays in the field of higher education is expanding access to education. Students now have the flexibility to study whenever and wherever they like thanks to digital resources. Students who must also manage child care, part- or full-time employment, and lengthy commutes can benefit from the efficiency and convenience of digital tools. Those who previously would have had difficulty furthering their education can now do so thanks to the mobility made possible by digitalization.

I’m not arguing that online classes should completely replace face-to-face instruction, but I do think that integrating digital resources into a classroom setting improves equity and access for students from all backgrounds. The next logical step for this generation of “digital natives” is to incorporate these cutting-edge practises into their formal education.

Into the Future

As we enter the year 2023, it is more apparent than ever before that effective digitalization has the potential to revolutionise the effectiveness of back-end processes as well as the student experience, thereby fostering the growth and success of both institutions and individuals. The benefits of digitalization are too great for universities to ignore them.

A report by NOUS Group and Oxford International highlights the unfortunate reality that universities are increasingly unable to keep up with the rapidly evolving world of higher education. Universities are under siege from a variety of threats that, taken together, threaten the sector’s resilience, including rising competition for talent, financial difficulties, and a simple lack of capacity.

There is, of course, no magic solution. These obstacles are insurmountable, but digitalization provides a solid opportunity to advance in the direction of sustainable growth.

I think digitization is the key to unlocking many of the key challenges facing universities in 2023. In 2023, institutions that rose to the challenge and embraced digitalization will emerge stronger, more resilient, and more attractive to students. This is because digitalization has the potential to improve the student experience, streamline and reduce inefficiencies in back-end processes, and increase access to education.

Daniel Harrison
As a blogger and creative writer, I strive to create content that not only informs but also entertains. My passion for SEO allows me to ensure that my writing is seen by as many people as possible. I believe that everyone has a story worth telling, and I am dedicated to helping others share theirs.