Gartner report reveals top 10 strategic technologies impacting HE

Research firm Gartner Inc. has released new research that reveals what tech is having the biggest impact on higher education in 2019

Gartner have released a report that highlights the top 10 strategic technologies that should be on the radars of higher education CIOs this year.

Including technologies such as artificial intelligence and career software, the list presents a varied list of tech in which HEIs should be investing in 2019.

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Glenda Morgan, senior research director at Gartner, said: “Institutions looking to thrive in the expanding education ecosystem must leverage technology early on that enables them to become more innovative.”

The top 10 strategic technologies impacting higher education in 2019 are:

Next-gen security and risk management

Factors such as global regulatory compliance and the growing Internet of Things (IoT) landscape are forcing HEIs to address security and risk with a more multidimensional strategy.

Morgan said: “The average modern-day student expects seamless personalised experiences, so the typical security objectives of confidentiality, integrity and availability must expand to include privacy, safety and reliability as institutions become more digital.”

Artificial intelligence conversational interfaces

AI conversational interfaces are a subset of conversational user interfaces, in which both user and machine interactions occur. These interfaces include growing educational resources such as chatbots.

According to the 2019 CIO Agenda Survey, the percentage of HEIs that have, or plan to, deploy AI conversational interfaces has grown from 18% to 38% in the last year.

Related news: AI chatbot takes up post at Staffs University in UK first

Smart campus

The smart campus is a model that sees the interaction between humans and technology-enabled systems in order to create a more immersive and automated experience for students and staff.

A growing number of HEIs are moving towards smart campus improvements, and Morgan commented that the move is a “win all-around, except for the data security implications that come with most technology initiatives today.”

Predictive analytics

Predictive analytics use machine learning techniques to analyse data to recognise patterns and assess likely outcomes. This kind of analytics is used in everything from calculating student demand for a certain course, to identifying students’ risks of failing or dropping out.

Predictive analytics is one component of the approach we call ‘big data’.

Nudge tech

This is a collection of technologies, including cloud, mobile, social, and data, that work together to achieve personalised interaction with students and staff, such as text reminders for classes.

Morgan said: “The idea behind ‘nudging’ is for institutions to use data to impact behaviours, like establishing good studying habits or making time for fitness between classes.

“Nudge tech is a concrete example of how to achieve personalisation at scale, which is becoming a key competitive advantage in an increasingly global and digital education ecosystem.”

Institutions looking to thrive in the expanding education ecosystem must leverage technology early on that enables them to become more innovative.
–Glenda Morgan, Gartner

Digital credentialing technologies

Digital credentials such as degree certificates are a growing trend in HE in response to the increasing ease of faking paper documents. Tech such as blockchain has played a major role in this evolution, as well as the growing role of professional networking sites such as LinkedIn in job searching.

Digital credentials allow students and employers to exchange verified proof of education quickly and seamlessly, and improving data encryption means that they can be trusted by recipients.

Related news: American university offers blockchain accreditation

Hybrid integration platforms

HEIs are increasingly adopting cloud-based solutions, whilst still working with on-premises systems. A hybrid integration platform is rapidly becoming the reference framework for next-gen integration software, in order to help HEIs streamline processes across their cloud and physical solutions.

Career software

Students are increasingly demanding concrete employability outcomes from their university experience, and as such the importance of career software has peaked across the globe.

Student cross-life cycle CRM

A student cross-life cycle CRM allows for a single view of a student, throughout their educational phases. Beginning with pre-higher education, the campus-wide, 360-degree view of the student allows a broader view of how the student is moving through education.

Wireless presentation technologies

Presentations are often a large component of university courses, and wireless presentation tech allows users to project material from a computer or mobile device onto a screen using a wireless network. This removes the need for wired connections and adapters, and supports the growing BYOD phenomenon.

To see complementary research and webinars, visit Gartner’s Trends and Predictions Hub at

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