Today’s OFT Announcement Marks A Step In The Right Direction

ukadobe

October 22, 2013

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Mark A’Bear, Education Manager at Adobe UK responds to the news that the Office of Fair Trading plans to investigate students’ consumer rights and university competition.

“I welcome today’s news that the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) plans to investigate the value for money that students are getting in light of the radical changes that are taking place within the Higher Education sector.

The hike in tuition fees was inevitably going to mean that the student experience would change. It has never been more important for graduates to have real world skills – real world skills that employers are increasingly expecting their new recruits to have. But students need the support of their Universities to provide access to the tools and facilities that will help them develop these skills in the first place.

Naturally, students are questioning the value for money they get from their University and feel entitled to a better quality degree for the extra money they are paying. Our own Digital Campus research earlier this year – which surveyed the 2012/13 intake of undergraduates, the first to pay the higher fees – revealed that universities still have a way to go in achieving this.

55% of the students we spoke to admit their university is not living up to their expectations, specifically pinpointing the lack of suitable facilities such as libraries, and technology provision as the main areas needing improvement. As many as half only have access to basic tools such as internet, email and basic programmes, falling short of the 82% who expect their university to go above and beyond a basic technology provision before they started their course.

University Vice Chancellors must step up to the challenge, and quickly, to meet the demands of the next generation of student. Needless to say, those able to adapt their strategies will be far more appealing to students looking for reassurances that they’ll have more than just debt to show for their University careers.”

Mark A’Bear, Education Manager at Adobe UK

A-Level results; the National Student Survey; what does it mean for higher education?

ukadobe

August 15, 2013

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Mark A’Bear, UK Education Manager discusses the need for institutions to provide good value for money on the back of this week’s A-Level results and National Student Survey

Today thousands of students across the UK receive their A- Level results, with a record numbers going through the clearing process to get their place at university.

However, while Universities may have filled places for the next academic year, the hard work has only just begun. With students now paying up to £9,000 a year in tuition fees, their expectations are understandably higher, so retaining students is now just as important as attracting them in the first place.

Interestingly, the National Student Survey results were also out this week, which showed that whilst universities are moving in the right direction, more needs to be done to ensure that students are getting value for money.  Our own Digital Campus 2013 data echoed this sentiment, as it revealed that for 55% of the 2012/13 student intake, university didn’t live up to their expectations, with a lack of suitable libraries and technology named the main reasons why. It also showed a worrying gap between the ICT provision students expected to have before they started their course, and what they actually got. 82% expected their university to go above and beyond a basic technology provision (internet, email and basic programmes) – but only half actually got that.

Students also had concerns over how employable they will be when they graduate, with a  third (33%) admitting they don’t feel their university is equipped to help them get a job and almost a half (49%) saying they didn’t think their chosen institution had good enough links with business. This comes at a time when 96% of students identified ‘increasing their chances of employment’ as the number one reason behind their decision to go to university in the first place.

It’s worrying that there are still many students who only have access to basic tools and technology and aren’t confident that the money they are spending on their education will result in a job. I’m therefore calling on institutions currently going through the clearing process to use this as a wake-up call and provide students with the digital tools needed to help them succeed in today’s tech-driven workplace – or risk leaving them sorely disappointed.

At Adobe we are supporting institutions in providing their students with the latest industry standard technology to help meet their increasing digital demands. We now provide nearly 50% of all Universities and FE Colleges with site-wide access to the latest industry standard creative tools that help students increase their employability. The three year Eduserv Adobe ELA Framework Agreement extends student access to Adobe technology across the entire campus, as well as on staff computers and we estimate that 1.5 million UK students, will have access to Adobe’s industry standard creative tools from September.

Digital Campus 2013 Report: Universities falling short of student expectations

The @AdobeUK Team

May 16, 2013

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Hot off the press! We’ve just released our Digital Campus 2013 report, which reveals that universities still have a way to go in making students feel they are getting value for money following the tuition fees rise.

Specifically, students from this year’s intake are pinpointing the provision of suitable libraries and technology as the main areas needing improvement, with two-thirds (63%) saying they expected to have access to more support facilities and services than they are actually getting.

Despite the fact that 96% of students said the number one reason they chose to go to university was to increase their chances of getting a job when they graduate, only a third (33%) think their university will help them do this now.

As a result, we are calling on Vice Chancellors to review their ICT strategies to help live up to their student’s digital demands.  Click on the infographic below to view all the key findings in detail:

For more information on how Adobe can help institutions live up to student demands visit www.adobe.com/uk/education.

Adobe Education Digital Campus Infographic blog

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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