Universities are under increasing pressure to deliver ‘more with less’. All but five universities in England and Wales will have less money from the government for the new academic year, starting in September 2011 and close to a billion pounds is being cut from university funding in total.
Indeed, the entire landscape of university education is in transition, as the social and psychological cost of the huge rise in tuition fees begins to strike home. Once at University, students will be looking for outstanding value for money and their demands will magnify. This will be focused around their ability to gain the most knowledge and skills possible in order to maximise their chances of employment upon graduation.
Critical to Universities providing this to students will be online environments that maximise resources, enhance the availability of information, and make connections with people and platforms that will help them achieve success.
Commercial organisations are recognising these challenges and are providing comprehensive platforms for universities and other education establishments that have all the functionality ready to go. These platforms have forums, wikis, and blogs, which are all part of this wider shared learning experience that is growing rapidly.
Maintaining the necessary IT infrastructure to support this growing industry can be very costly – so, how can eLearning companies provide a reliable platform to reconcile these increased student demands and account for the squeeze on University funding?
Virtualisation and cloud computing are perfectly placed to enable the eLearning providers to have an infrastructure that enables growth and can save them considerable cost. Add reliable 24/7 support and eLearning providers have the industry advantage they need to deliver affordable solution to the Universities and the tools students require to maximise their time at University, and their employability thereafter.