A new report released by Ellucian, the leading higher education technology solutions provider, reveals that despite the recognized benefits of Artificial Intelligence (AI), its use in higher education is less widespread than perceived.
The comprehensive survey conducted with 1,140 US higher education administrators from 768 institutions uncovers a significant opportunity, highlighting gaps between the perceived prevalence of AI and the actual reported usage by individuals.
Speaking on the report, Jeff Dinski, Chief Strategy and Corporate Development Officer, Ellucian, said:
The findings of our survey highlight the untapped potential of AI in higher education. While there is a clear gap between the perceived and actual use of AI, our data shows that over 70% of respondents view AI favourably. This indicates a promising future for AI in enhancing efficiency, staying up-to-date with technological advances, and better supporting students and outcomes. At Ellucian, we have a role in facilitating this transition, helping institutions navigate the process of adopting and leveraging AI technologies for increased effectiveness.
- 60% of administrators claim their institution uses AI functionality, but less than one-third of higher education professionals have experience using AI at work.
- About half of respondents expect that the positive effects of AI will span the student experience, from better supporting the student journey to improving student outcomes at their institution.
- Almost 48% of respondents say they have yet to utilize AI personally or professionally.
- 30% of staff report “advanced” or “extensive” use of data analytics and data-driven decision-making.
- The main barriers to AI adoption include data security concerns, the need for AI training programs, and ethical implications.
- Institutional Research and Analytics, Admissions and Advising were identified as the three business functions across higher education that could benefit the most from AI integration.
- Less than a third of institutions have initiated conversations about the ethical implications of AI in higher education.
Ellucian surveyed from June 22 – August 9, 2023, among a national sample of 1,140 higher education administrators from 768 institutions, ensuring a broad representation across various institution types, sizes, and job functions. 36% of respondents represented Private 4-year institutions, 33% represented Public 4-year institutions, 29% were from Public 2-year institutions, and 2% fell under “other” institutions.
Ellucian fosters higher education innovation, partners with over 2,900 customers in 50 countries, and serves 22 million students. Fueled by decades of experience with a singular focus on the unique needs of learning institutions, the Ellucian platform features best-in-class SaaS capabilities. It delivers insights needed now and into the future. These solutions and services span the entire student lifecycle, including data-rich tools for student recruitment, enrollment, and retention to workforce analytics, fundraising, and alumni engagement. Ellucian’s innovative solutions, a vast ecosystem of partners and a user community of more than 45,000 provide best practices leading to more tremendous institutional success and better student outcomes.