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Uni might not be the best Year 13 option

In this podcast chief executive of Year 13 Will Stubley joins Melbourne Business School chief learning innovation officer Dr Nora Koslowski and Martin Betts in the HEDx studio to discuss alternative options to the traditional Year 12 to university pipeline. With the skills the Australian economy needs changing, how can universities keep up to deliver education that is relevant to those changes?

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How unwelcoming are our universities?

Many staff and students in universities around the world talk fondly of how university transformed their lives. Many do so from a position of having had it relatively good in the first place. There is a groundswell of global concern with making higher education more easily accessible to all in society in all countries. This requires coordinated action in funding systems, financial aid, institutional leadership, and in the underlying culture and how welcoming it is to all students.

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Kiki: is this a time of danger or opportunity?

This is a time when we least need our Vice Chancellors and Presidents to be formulaic and replaceable by AI. We do need to see boldness and distinction. I reflected on all of these matters together on the episode of the HEDx podcast you can access here with Andrea Burrows, Managing Director of OES UK and Professor Nick Jennings, Vice Chancellor and President of Loughborough University.

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A university is more than its rank

We would call for the sector to reimagine new forms of university assessment that are independent, robust, and reliable. The power to redefine the future of higher education lies with those who recognise that rankings should not drive decisions; rather, they should be just a reflection of a university’s character and impact.

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Seeking zero wasted potential in a war for talent

With all higher education providers under pressure, and 75% of them in Australia in deficit, capitalising on opportunities from this displacement in skills needs is a competitive opportunity. It is meeting society, people and economic needs and the opportunity costs of not acting are acute. With domestic demand possibly in terminal decline, not making this change would be missing the moment and there is a great leadership opportunity to embrace it. Can any university afford to waste the potential of new income streams and new ways of doing business?

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Leaders providing access at scale to quality learning experiences

In today’s changing world, the synergy between education and technology has become a guiding principle and a central goal for contemporary university leaders. This convergence reflects the evolving expectations of students and has taken a prominent role in university strategies and broader global policy ambitions. While it offers immense potential, it also presents a profound challenge for a new generation of leaders who must navigate this terrain in an increasingly ambiguous and turbulent environment.

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What is an omni-channel university?

Higher education is far from the omni-channel model at present. Many universities have established sophisticated online offerings often in partnership with EdTech providers. Some of the universities that have got closest to an omni-channel model have established sophisticated learning innovation units and strong partnerships with EdTech eco-systems. But the challenge of integrating that offering with their on campus and face to face models of delivery, and the systems that sit across the two, are significant.

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Lifelong learning requires meeting learners where they are at

One could argue that higher education has gone from being a rite of passage for the privileged few, to now being more directly connected to the need to close skills gaps. The over-riding sense is that education increasingly needs to meet people, both learners and employers, where they are at. This means both in the multiple and continuous life stages of their turning to learning, and the skills they need for its primary purpose for them of being productive in a changing world of work. Meeting learners where they are at increasingly means through technology and at work and at times that suit them and through the facilitation of others. It has long left being an absolute requirement for it to be on campus, face to face only, and at times that suit us and our systems.

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