Higher Education Optimistic About Prospective Uses for Artificial Intelligence, but Lack Training and Understanding, Report Finds

Lenexa, Kan., June 12, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — As artificial intelligence (AI) continues to influence every industry from engineering to education, leading enrollment management agency EducationDynamics, and UPCEA, the online and professional education association, have released an in-depth analysis of AI’s rising use and its potential to revolutionize institutional practices within higher education. The “AI Emerging Trends and Technology” report is now available.  

The 2024 survey examines the current and perceived use of AI and other emerging technologies within institutional marketing and enrollment management. While the findings reveal overwhelming optimism and receptivity to these technologies (91% are receptive to using emerging technology in their market and/or enrollment management work), a significant portion of respondents have yet to adopt AI-powered tools within their marketing and enrollment departments. Lack of understanding, fear of change among institutional leaders, budget constraints, and insufficient staff or technological readiness were cited as the most common factors affecting AI integration.

“This survey underscores the promising future of AI in higher education marketing and enrollment management, while also highlighting the significant barriers that institutions must overcome to fully leverage these technologies,” said EducationDynamics CEO Bruce Douglas. “Bridging the gap between positive perceptions and actual adoption rates requires enhanced understanding, support, staff development and training, and ethical guidelines for integrating AI in higher education.”

Additional key findings include:

●     More than 50% of respondents believe that their institution’s use of AI will positively impact the student experience, and 54% think that students will value transparency about how AI is being used in the recruitment and enrollment process.

●     Over a third (35%) identified personalized marketing/target audiences as the greatest opportunity for AI adoption. Other opportunities include reducing workload/increasing efficiency (23%) and improving communications via chatbots (19%).

●     However, only 30% of institutions have a responsible use policy for AI, 21% are communicating or will communicate their data privacy practices and policies to students within the next year, and just 7% of institutions have a plan to upskill and support staff in adopting AI-driven technology.

Bruce Etter, UPCEA’s senior director of research and consulting observed, “While the potential of these technologies is profound, so too is the institutional foot dragging. Although these technologies must be carefully evaluated, their potential benefit, particularly for resource-strapped institutions, is undeniable. Those that are proactive in developing responsible use policies, empowering staff, and communicating transparently will see the greatest returns from these technologies.”   

Data for the “2024 Emerging Trends and Technology Report” was sourced from a survey of higher education marketing and enrollment management professionals between March 4 and April 1, 2024. The report is available for free download on the EducationDynamics website

For more information, please visit educationdynamics.com/insights or contact Senior Director of Marketing and Corporate Communication Eric McGee at emcgee@educationdynamics.com.  


About EducationDynamics
EducationDynamics is the transformative strategic partner that helps schools meet the challenges and opportunities of serving today’s student. Our mission is to help colleges and universities understand, engage, and serve students and expand opportunity through education. We have dedicated the last 30 years to helping schools serve adult and non-traditional students through online programs, and we are the largest provider of unbundled marketing and enrollment management services for online and adult-focused higher ed. For more information, visit: educationdynamics.com

UPCEA is the online and professional education association. Our members continuously reinvent higher education, positively impacting millions of lives. We proudly lead and support them through cutting edge research, professional development, networking and mentorship, conferences and seminars, and stakeholder advocacy. Our collaborative, entrepreneurial community brings together decision makers and influencers in education, industry, research, and policy interested in improving educational access and outcomes. Learn more about us at UPCEA.edu.