University IT departments are behind the times, survey finds

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16th March 2015 12:54 - Education

A recent survey has found that IT departments within UK universities are not keeping up with the latest developments in technology.University IT departments behind the times, survey finds

The survey also suggested that universities are finding it difficult to meet the needs of their students, even though many believe that higher quality technology in education institutions leads to higher academic achievement.

The survey of 150 heads of IT within UK universities discovered that IT departments are not quick enough to respond the rise of social media, cloud services and mobility.

Of the respondents, one in five felt that their department was inadequate.

On the other hand, 27 per cent believed that the IT department within their university was successfully meeting their students’ needs.

One of the concerns highlighted was the quality of internet coverage in halls of residence and in the university buildings.

Just 12 per cent of institutions claimed to have Wi-Fi which covers the entire university. However, 22 per cent said that they intended on improving the quality of their Wi-Fi service.

The findings revealed that only 12 per cent of institutions accept student mobility, despite the rising usage of smartphones and tablet computers within the university. However, 13 per cent of the respondents claimed to have plans to support mobility in the future.

Of the respondents, only 6 per cent said that they facilitate online lectures and just 7 per cent allow their students to get in touch with lecturers online.

An alternative piece of research found that 95 per cent of students feel that if their campus improved their IT services, they would have a better experience on-site. As well as this, 34 per cent of students would be willing to pay higher tuition fees if the money was spent on improving the IT.

A further bit of research found that when deciding which university to attend, 83 per cent consider online coursework, online lectures and digital facilities.

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