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Emerging Tech Challenges

What keeps higher ed technology leaders up at night?

At Campus Technology's 2008 Executive Summit held in Boston this past summer (sponsored by CDW-G), moderator John Camp used audience polling from Turning Technologies to survey 50 IT leaders from diverse institutions and gauge the impact of emerging technologies on their campuses and on their evolving roles.

Who's Pushing New Technologies?. Response to the question "Who do you think is primarily pushing new technologies in higher education?" revealed students as the drivers (44%), but additional polling showed that IT leaders focus on wider institutional priorities even as they react to student expectation and demand.

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Challenges What are the challenges surrounding the deployment of emerging technologies? Participants suggested their own categories, and as a group ranked the following, among other criteria (right): • Impact of technology on learning (30%) • Helping people (faculty, etc.) change (23%) • Keeping up with change (15%) • Changing criteria for evaluating scholarly teaching and learning (5%)

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Additional Challenges In a ranking of "additional" challenges, participants singled out planning for innovation (48%) as the most significant challenge.

BOTTOM LINE: What were participants' "top challenges" overall? The following were worth heading into afternoon workgroup sessions for, according to the polls:

  • Driving IT toward institutional goals
  • Mass customization of learning
  • Planning for innovation
  • Impact of technology on learning

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