Simple, secure, connected: getting IT that ticks all boxes

Schools, colleges and universities have to invest in educational technology? Let`s see what are the main priorities for their IT leaders around the world.

Education is changing considerably at the moment, and one aspect that’s moving quickly is digital. While there are many other factors influencing education’s changing nature and needs, technology and IT is playing a significant role. And we know it’s not just education – this is happening in all sectors and every industry all over the world.

So, to get some real insight into digital’s effect on education, we spoke to IT leaders in education establishments around the world. They gave us their opinion on what’s going on in their schools, colleges and universities, the main trends in educational technology they need to follow, and their biggest challenges. They also discussed how vital it is to provide students with the right facilities and resources. Because for our students, knowing how to use digital is a skill not unlike reading, writing and arithmetic were for us.

Walk before you can run

One of the most encouraging stats to come out of our global report was that schools, colleges and universities around the world are putting their digital foundations in place. 80% of IT leaders invested in a wireless network or wi-fi in the last 12 months, and 57% in storage and servers[1].

Establishments are serious about their pledge to turn digital: they’re ensuring everything is in place before bringing in more adventurous technology in education.

61% of respondents said that wi-fi and connectivity in education create a more flexible learning environment for students, and extend learning beyond the classroom[2]. Providing this foundation doesn’t just help students during school hours. It means that those without privileges at home can still get a high-quality education, as they can access their school’s facilities.

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So, establishments are doing great when it comes to securing connectivity. 80% say a key priority in the next 12 months is to improve the speed of their wi-fi[3].

And security is key as well. Over half say a significant priority of theirs is to improve network security, and 38% say they need to uphold their duty of care by monitoring what students access[4].

But it’s not just about making sure students are safe. With the rise of digital technology in schools comes the rise of data breaches and hackers. 32% of respondents say one of their biggest device issues is limited or non-existent built-in security[5].

Keeping it simple

Above all, you need simplicity. IT and technology can get complex at times, and you don’t need that added stress. 78% of respondents say that levels of digital competency vary across their staff[6]. So, you need systems and devices that cater for all. It’s clear that devices must be easy to use: half of respondents say their top factor in showing ROI on devices is how easy and intuitive they are[7].

Plus, 85% of IT teams say simplification of network management is one key priority over the next 12 months[8].

And with 28% of staff and teachers being rated as having excellent or good digital literacy skills in higher and further education, it’s important to use devices that empower, enable and support[9].

Forming a plan

To fully achieve your digital learning goals, you need to have a connected campus, a secure network, and simplicity across your IT systems and devices. Unsurprisingly, it’s a lot easier said than done.

55% of education establishments feel they could accelerate their digital learning progress if they knew where best to invest[10]. And 65% find it hard to decide on the mix of infrastructure, devices and apps to use[11]. That’s why we’re here to be your edtech partner. From infrastructure to devices, we’ve helped all levels of establishments with their IT. And we can help you decide what to pick, and how to pitch it to budget holders.

To join in the digital education conversation, follow me on Twitter: @AshMerchant1. And to read the entire research report, The Road to Digital Learning, download it here.

If you want to find out more about the state of using technology in education read the first blog of this series ‘Is your IT setup helping to close the digital skills gap?

[1] The Road to Digital Learning, Fujitsu, 2017
[2] The Road to Digital Learning, Fujitsu, 2017
[3] The Road to Digital Learning, Fujitsu, 2017
[4] The Road to Digital Learning, Fujitsu, 2017
[5] The Road to Digital Learning, Fujitsu, 2017
[6] The Road to Digital Learning, Fujitsu, 2017
[7] The Road to Digital Learning, Fujitsu, 2017
[8] The Road to Digital Learning, Fujitsu, 2017
[9] The Road to Digital Learning, Fujitsu, 2017
[10] The Road to Digital Learning, Fujitsu, 2017
[11] The Road to Digital Learning, Fujitsu, 2017

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