The new battleground for students in a digital age: Customer Experience

There is no doubt that change in the tertiary education sector is accelerating. Over the past five or so years we’ve seen:

  • a ramping up of online learning via MOOC’s (70 million learners and counting!)
  • the unbundling of education services (think online tutoring services or white-labelled content creation)
  • challenges to the traditional notion of qualifications (open badges, nano-degrees and the like)

Advances in technology have driven the majority of these changes. Even in more traditional ‘bricks and mortar’ education providers, technology is now woven deeply through students educational experience, both in and out of the classroom.

Like most other aspects of their lives, students expect that technology will help them throughout their studies: searching providers, applying and enrolling, communicating with teachers and other students, accessing and interacting with academic content, undertaking and submitting assessment, receiving feedback, grades, advice and assistance.

This means that technology that’s embedded readily throughout the whole student lifecycle is table stakes in this competitive sector!

Customer Experience Design, while not a new field, is emerging as a critical differentiator in the new ‘digitised’ education landscape. Powered by the digital forces (mobile, big data, social, cloud and artificial intelligence) that have transformed so many other sectors (real estate, movies and entertainment, retail etc.) new entrants to the education sector are designing amazing experiences for their students and learners throughout the whole journey (looked at lately?).

Inside Navitas, we are also paying attention to the ‘customer’ experience to improve the experience and outcomes for our students – check out the ACAP Project that involved the project team putting themselves in the mind of the customer to identify and eliminate ‘pain points’ for students and the Edith Cowan College Project that mapped the student journey to identify points of attrition.

2017-18 period will see a focus on the Digital Student Experience here at Navitas – keep an eye out on Yammer or connect directly with Navitas Learning and Teaching Services to share your projects and ideas.