Skip Ribbon Commands
Skip to main content

 Email  Share  Print

New ACE Presidential Innovation Lab Paper Explores Students of the Future

August 06, 2014

Presidential Innovation Lab logo


American higher education institutions should develop strategies now to meet the changing needs of college students, which will shift over the next decade due to major changes in demographics, technology and learning styles.​

That is the conclusion of the latest report inspired by the work of the Presidential Innovation Lab, an effort to explore the potential of educational innovations to boost the number of Americans able to earn a college degree.

The report, The Students of the Future​, is the third installment in a series of four papers stemming from the Presidential Innovation Lab, which is supported by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

The paper notes that “experts in digital learning see a disconnect between today’s young people and how colleges and universities currently organize and teach. A disconnect also exists between the needs of the next generation of students—many of whom will be used to learning in hybrid, online formats and in informal ways—and the traditional ways that institutions teach, assess students’ learning, and award credentials.”

In addition, students of the future will have a wider range of backgrounds, skills and needs, which in turn will impact virtually every aspect of how colleges and universities operate, from student recruitment to academic programs to facilities, the paper notes.

The first two Presidential Innovation Lab papers examined challenges to the traditional higher education business model that are driven largely by financial concerns and the potential need to redesign faculty roles. To read those papers, click here.

The fourth paper, on major drivers and signals of change in higher education, will be released soon.

Fourteen chief executive officers from a diverse group of colleges and universities participated in the lab, which was launched last year with the goal of engaging in a robust and wide-ranging conversation about the various drivers of higher education change and potential reactions to those drivers. The specific charge of the lab was to examine how technological, pedagogical, organizational and structural innovations can close persistent higher education attainment gaps.​

Other ACE News

  • July 2, 2015

    Today's Headlines

    HEADLINES: Today's Top Higher Education News

    In today’s headlines, the Los Angeles Times editorializes in favor of the U.S. Supreme Court affirming the University of Texas at Austin’s admissions policy when the court rehears the Fisher case this fall. In other news, The Chronicle of Higher...

  • Institutional Capacity

    July 1, 2015

    Apply Now for ACE’s Institute for New Presidents

    New college and university leaders from all sectors of higher education can apply now for the 2015-16 ACE Institute for New Presidents, which is designed specifically for presidents in their first three years of service.

  • Supporting Student Veterans

    June 29, 2015

    Bob Woodruff Foundation Grant Extends Program to Train College Mental Health Counselors

    A grant from the Bob Woodruff Foundation will allow ACE to extend an initiative that trains college and university mental health counselors on how to better address issues such as post-traumatic stress and suicide prevention in their work treating...

  • June 26, 2015

    Education Department Scales Back Plan to Rate Colleges

    The Department of Education (ED) announced yesterday that it has scaled back the planned Postsecondary Institution Ratings System (PIRS) first announced by President Obama in August 2013.

  • Budget and Appropriations

    June 26, 2015

    Congress Moves Forward on Education Funding

    The House and Senate appropriations committees both passed their FY 2016 Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education bills this week, and the results were somewhat mixed for higher education.


 Related Content