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Higher Education Changes In 2022

Monday, May 23, 2022

Colleges and universities have long understood (at least conceptually) the need to evolve in order to stay competitive and meet students’ needs. Arguably, the pace of change before the pandemic in early 2020 was slow, if not stagnant.

In the past two years, however, there have been marked and widespread higher education changes as colleges around the world rushed to adapt to changing circumstances. However, many schools continue to report enrollment declines.

This indicates that further action may be necessary for institutions that are committed to managing change in higher education in order to provide the best possible experience and education for students.

How Are Colleges Continuing to Evolve?

Schools across the country are already taking steps to mitigate (and, ideally, reverse) declining applications and enrollment numbers. Some of the changes, such as increased adoption of online education, are not unexpected. There are several other potential changes and trends that will likely occur in higher education in 2022.

As discussed more fully below, these include shifting the focus of communications to the value of education; partnering with business and industry; decreasing the emphasis on rankings; and increasing the focus on innovation in the online learning space.

Reframing the Value Proposition

One way that schools are evolving to stay competitive is by reframing their value proposition for current and prospective students, as well as for parents of high school students, as those parents may be involved in helping fund their children’s educations.

As the costs of obtaining a college degree from a four-year institution continue to rise, colleges are seeking to shift the focus of the discussion to the value of higher education in general. This includes not only the potential increased earning power that college graduates gain, but also how colleges are focusing on inclusion and civility and contributing in meaningful ways to their communities.

Increasing Partnership With Business and Industry

Another trend is an increased partnership among colleges and industry. By building and fostering relationships with key business partners in the community, colleges can offer students more hands-on learning opportunities. In doing so, schools are helping to ensure their graduates are ready for the workforce while enhancing their graduates’ career opportunities, as many businesses recognize the value of experiential learning.

Moving Focus Away From Rankings

For decades, colleges have measured themselves against their peers through third-party rankings, and many schools relied heavily on these metrics in their recruiting efforts. However, some colleges are beginning to recognize that these rankings aren’t worthwhile if the peer institutions against which they are being benchmarked are not, themselves, innovating.

Rather than placing such a high emphasis on rankings, some schools have begun to shift the focus away from such comparisons to the relative strength of their academic programs and student successes.

Embracing Innovation in Online Learning

Rather than attempting to return to a pre-pandemic way of instruction and learning, many colleges have realized they need to embrace innovation in online learning. In order to drive enrollment, institutions must recognize that many students today prefer to learn online rather than in an on-campus environment. Schools must adopt new and evolving technology solutions that can support more hybrid and online programs.

A Well-Established Leader in the Accredited Online-Learning Space

Generations College understands that effective organizational change in higher education requires an ongoing commitment to excellence.

While many colleges had to pivot to an online learning environment in 2020 due to the pandemic, Generations College has been at the forefront of online education, with the school’s first online class offered in 2013 and its first online degree program launched in 2018.

Today, Generations College offers four fully accredited online degree programs designed for motivated students who want the flexibility and other benefits that come from online learning without having to sacrifice the quality of their education.

To learn more contact Generations College or apply online today!