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Higher Education

Forward-looking higher-education leaders are transforming their institutions—leveraging online and digital tools, nurturing corporate partnerships, and sourcing new revenue streams.

What’s Trending in Higher Education

  • New business and delivery models are gaining traction. Competency-based models, MOOCs (massive open online courses), “boot camps,” and microcredentials are emerging. There’s a growing investment in online programs, particularly hybrids that blend online and face-to-face learning.
  • Higher education is more closely aligning with employers. There’s an increasing array of partnerships with employers that focus on credentialing, licensing, and identifying workforce needs of the future.
  • There’s a greater focus on outcomes. Federal and state governments are promoting more transparency and starting to tie funding to student performance.
  • Student expectations are shifting in meaningful ways. Millennials tend to trust word-of-mouth and firsthand experience versus industry expertise. They’re increasingly demanding to be treated as customers and to realize value consummate to the investment they’re making.

For Every Opportunity, a Corresponding Challenge

Education leaders must act with unprecedented strategic clarity in order to meet pressing challenges and seize the opportunities that lie ahead.

One major challenge is that costs in higher education are rising faster than in almost all other industries. Tuition prices have grown nearly four times since 1978 versus inflation, outpacing even health care costs.

Education Costs Are Growing at an Unsustainable Rate

At the same time, demands are rising for a greater return on investment in higher education. In recent years, the investment required for a college education has outpaced incomes, while student debt has remained high. In addition, nearly half of US jobs are at risk for automation. The jobs of the future demand “higher order” skills, but many business leaders perceive that grads are not adequately prepared.

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