The University is Dead.
Long Live the University!
James L. Morrison
Professor of Educational Leadership
UNC-Chapel Hill

Higher Education in the 21st Century

What are the signals of change that will affect higher education in the coming decade?
Do these signals portend a paradigm shift in higher education?

The tool: Environmental scanning
The analysis: Change drivers
The data: social, economic, technological
The implications

Change Drivers
Economic Restructuring
Information Technology

By 2010, 43% of adults will be age 50 or older.
By 2010, 50% of all college students will be adults.
By 2004, 100 million Americans will take part in adult education programs (1995 = 76 million).

Graduates Must Be Able To
Function in a global economy for job success in the 21st century
Access, analyze, process, and communicate information
Use information technology tools effectively
Engage in continuous, independent learning
Work as a team member

Today’s Students
Technologically sophisticated
Expect user-friendly services
Want accessible, available education at
their time, place, and medium of choice
Want dependable one-stop or no-stop service that is high tech but personable

Economic Restructuring

Movement of capital, products, technology, information continue at record pace
Global economy
Regional free trade
Multinational corporations
Increased economic competition

B-2-B Commerce Projections

Continued organizational downsizing
Virtual companies

Digital Age
60% GNP related to IT industries now.
In 5 years
Most new jobs will occur in computer related fields (and 80% of the jobs do not even exist yet).
50% of workers will be employed in industries that produce or are intensive users of information technology.

Constant training, retraining, job-hopping, and even career-hopping is the norm.


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What Lies Ahead in Technology
Net PC
Web TV
High Definition TV
Electronic books
Virtual reality
Expert systems
WWW; Web course mgt
Low-earth-orbit satellites
Wireless networks
Video conferencing

The cost of computing power drops roughly 30% every year, and microchips are doubling in performance power every 18 months.

You give the birthday kid a Saturn, made by Sega, the gamemaker. It runs on a higher-performance processor than the original 1976 Cray supercomputer.

Today’s average consumers wear more computing power on their wrists than existed in the entire world before 1961.

Beginning in 1991, companies spent more money on computing and communications gear than the combined monies spent on industrial, mining, farm, and construction equipment.

Beginning in 1997…
more email than snailmail was sent
more computers than cars were sold
the Internet economy became the 3d largest

"Market for online corporate training"
Market for online corporate training: $11 billion by 2003
In 1999, Sun employees enrolled in 3,500 Web-based courses

Network Learning Technologies are Transforming Core Production and Delivery Processes
Package knowledge
Deliver knowledge
Access knowledge
Acquire knowledge

Digital Revolution

Digital Revolution

Digital Revolution

Digital Revolution

Digital Revolution

The Numbers
Internet use doubles every 90 days
Internet use is going up at the rate of about 140 persons a second and almost 72 million a year
Number of e-mails sent on an average day: 10 billion in 2000; 35 billion expected in 2005

Cable and phone companies are consolidating to provide interactive multimedia programming
Educational courses and programs are being produced by corporations
UK Higher Ed Funding Counsel estimates online market at 71 billion US$

Corporate Universities
1990, 400; 2000, 2,000
Number of students increasing 30% per year
By 2003, corporations will conduct 96% of
training online
By 2010 corporate training universities > higher education institutions

Corporate training and distance learning will “wipe out” many of the 700 MBA programs that issue 100,000 MBAs each year.
Robert Hamada
Dean, Graduate School of Business, Univ of Chicago
May, 2000

Amount spent on IT-related e-learning in 2000—$1.7 billion
Amount spent on IT-related e-learning in 2003—$5.3 billion
Fuel: progress in networking, collaboration software, multimedia

U.S. C & U’s will spend 2.7 billion this year on IT infrastructure (28% increase)
72% of C & U’s offer distance education (48% in 1999)
34% provide an online degree program (15% in 1998)
38% provide Internet connections in dorms

"The 'do nothing' universities will not survive. Universities need to adapt rapidly to the top-down influences of globalization and the new technologies, as well as the bottom-up imperatives of serving the local labor market, innovating with local companies, and providing professional-development courses that stimulate economic and intellectual growth."
British Education Secretary David Blunkett

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The Changing Higher Education Environment
Certification monopoly at risk
employers concerned about competency
employers relying less on diplomas
Outcomes assessment coming on line
Western Governors University
New competition
Traditional “service areas” fair game
New for-profit educational providers
Old-line institutions have discovered
satellites and the Internet

"University professors “branding”"
University professors “branding” themselves
Universities requiring laptops of entering students
Universities requiring online admissions
Universities requiring online faculty applications

Old Paradigm       New Paradigm
Student role = empty vessel
Degrees based on credit hours
Information transfer via classrooms
Student role = knowledge creator
Degrees based on competency exams
Information transfer in students’ rooms

Old Paragidm New Paradigm
Set enrollments (e.g., once a year)
Act independently
Varying lengths of time for learning modules
Continuous enrollments (e.g., once every two weeks)
Act with partners

Old Paradigm New Paradigm
Faculty lecture
Faculty responsible for content, media, assessment
Faculty role = actor
Faculty use projects, shared learning
Faculty work as part of instructional team
Faculty role = director

“Every day seems to bring the dawn of a new era”
To anticipate the future, we must identify signals of change
To shape our future, we must interpret and act on these signals