Today’s learners must be able to think critically, recognize patterns, solve problems and communicate effectively in the workforce and society to be successful. Sixty-three percent of education leaders state job placement as the leading success factor for higher education, though only 43% of industry leaders indicate higher education is preparing learners with the needed workforce skills.

To close the gap between the prepared and unprepared, leaders are investing in education like never before and institutions are evolving to provide practical and applied education experiences.

By infusing experienced-based learning techniques, real-world teaching (internships, apprenticeships) and a personalized approach to the curriculum, retention rates can improve and job placements are more successful.

Higher educational institutions are using and benefiting from big data and cognitive capabilities to learn and reason from all the structured and unstructured data, providing faculty greater insight into their students’ background and progress, but also giving students better dashboards that expose future demand for jobs and career options matched to their skills and interest. This learning approach is attracting motivated students to these institutions improving the learner experience.

Cognitive solutions, like IBM Watson are helping in areas of student engagement, academic discovery and teacher advising. The ability to learn and reason using natural language and scouring through the endless amounts of data to provide answers to questions is the hallmark of Watson. Deakin University in Australia is using Watson Engagement Advisor to help students navigate through campus life and their career questions and choices. Other institutions around the world like in Alberta, Thailand, Brazil, Japan and the United States are using cognitive capabilities, mobile, social and deep data insights to help their students towards a path to success for the jobs of the future.

The education ecosystem includes partnerships across industry, academia and government and 57 percent of these leaders agree collaboration is necessary to effectively deliver practical skills development. A new economic model needs to be established rather than a traditional one with multiple participants all with the common goal of economic prosperity.

There are three things very important for Education leaders to know about the Cognitive Era and its impact on the segment.

  1. These systems will permeate many different parts of the economy, which will both create higher expectations for services among constituents, but also change the way new professionals are taught.
  2. Institutions much be more proactive to develop the data foundations to enable new cognitive systems, taking a more holistic approach.
  3. These new systems will transform how outcomes are enabled. Institutions will be better able to improve learning outcomes, including aligning to career needs. This will foster economic vitality and become more important within the region.

At Ocean Computer Group, our assessment services enable our customers in the K-12 and Higher Education industry to understand their current operating environment in relation both teaching and learning, and help you on the path to implementing the tools, solutions and technologies that will differentiate you in the marketplace. Contact us today for a complimentary consultation.