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ASU Picks Cloud Service for Education for Enterprise Tools

Arizona State University (ASU) has agreed to use a cloud storage provider as its primary secure collaboration platform throughout all of the university's campuses and academic activities.

Dropbox for Education will integrate with ASU's current identity and access systems, meaning its 10,000 faculty and staff will not need to create new usernames and passwords to use it. The service's file request feature and capabilities like unlimited version history and deletion recovery should make it easier for faculty members to quickly retrieve information they need.

"With Dropbox, our reach becomes as immediate and as broad as the Internet," said ASU Chief Information Officer Gordon Wilshon. "An ASU curriculum specialist working in Singapore can develop and upload a shared graduate curriculum and connect with an educator teaching in Paris, an administrator in China and IT support in Tempe."

While Dropbox had already been incorporated into several academic departments at ASU, full deployment is expected next year.

With Dropbox's announcement, ASU joins a list of about 3,000 educational institutions using its enterprise services, including Massachusetts Institute of Technology, California State University-Fullerton and the University of Oklahoma.

Landing ASU is a victory for Dropbox as the competitive landscape is quickly changing regarding enterprise services for higher education. Rival Box launched its own Box for Education initiative just last month and has already signed up Pennsylvania State University, Utah State University and Emerson College.

The ASU announcement is also significant because it has moved faster than many major universities in integrating technology. Along with its approximately 90,000 students on five campuses, it has about 17,000 students taking online classes.

About the Author

Michael Hart is a Los Angeles-based freelance writer and the former executive editor of THE Journal.

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