Take a Both/And Approach

Supporting truly student-centered learning requires a technology strategy that moves beyond legacy systems to an ecosystem designed to support the complete student journey. When identifying the right technologies to support your institution’s student-centered learning strategy, five key principles will set you on the right track.

One of those key principles is to take a both/and approach.

Being student-focused means being open to meeting student needs in new and innovative ways.

Whether it be online models, personalized and adaptable pathways, or competency-based and experiential learning, more school leaders are embracing experimentation with new ways of engaging and serving a more diverse population. All of this experimentation is exciting, but it makes technology investment more challenging because it’s less clear what technology you will need two, five, or even ten years down the road. You must continue to support your current environment, while providing options that help plan for new approaches in the years ahead.

Knowing this, it’s important to take a both/and approach to your technology strategy.

Invest in technologies that can meet your needs today as well as flex for the future. This approach ensures that your investments last over a longer period of time and mitigates the risk of locking you into outdated systems. When talking with vendors and technology partners, ask if they can simultaneously support traditional models as well as experimentation with new ones. Then ask how they would go about doing it. Systems designed for one approach are rarely flexible enough to be reshaped to meet a different need. The resulting experience can be far from student-centric.