Must Read Blog September 19, 2017

The Swiss Army Knives of Student Success Technology

Bottom Line

In search of the Swiss Army knife – the technology product that does everything well – institutions have struggled to realize the promise of an integrated technology solution that dramatically improves academic advising.

Drawing largely from a 2017 survey that reached over 2,200 administrators and advisors across 1,400 institutions, as well as interviews with 40 leading suppliers, Tyton Partners is soon to launch Driving Toward a Degree 2017: The Evolution of Academic Advising in Higher Education. This publication is meant to help institutions make informed decisions toward redesigning their academic advising to improve overall student success and retention.

Based on this research, institutions using what they perceive as fully integrated solutions are more likely to feel that technology does not enhance their advising function. This contradicts the advertised benefits of integrated functionality (i.e., it eases the pain of managing multiple products). These negative views have been influenced by these institutions’ experiences with the specific products that they have adopted. Institutions using fully integrated solutions are less likely to report satisfaction with their products.

While the market has developed considerably since we began tracking advising and student success technology, the integrated solution is not yet robust or customizable enough to fulfill all institutions’ needs. Instead, institutions that pick and choose from a menu of point solutions are better able to tailor those products and subsequently are more satisfied. Will the suppliers overcome these issues?  Perhaps, but for the integrated solution concept to really take hold, institutions will also need to think about how to overcome their own organizational silos so that the requirements for success are not merely the sum total of the wish lists from each silo.

Want to learn more?

To better understand how these trends in academic advising technology adoption will affect your institution or company, visit Tyton Partners’ Driving Toward a Degree, a research and action collaborative providing institutions with a guide for selecting and implementing student success and retention strategies and technologies.

Click here to connect with our team on how this analysis may support your student success and retention goals, or join us at any of the three following launch events for our 2017 report:

  • Tyton Partners is hosting the Driving Toward a Degree Symposium October 3rd, in Boston, MA, focused on helping students successfully navigate college pathways. The event will gather leaders from higher education institutions to discuss critical issues related to academic advising and student success. We have a few remaining slots, register here.