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Top Ten Higher Education IT Issues for 2011

November 7, 2011

Each year, the EDUCAUSE Current Issues Survey reveals the top-ten IT-related strategic issues for institutions of higher education. This year's survey results demonstrate that The University of Texas at Austin is actively addressing key issues common to higher education through IT governance, campus-wide collaboration and strategic partnerships aimed at investing IT dollars in the most cost-effective way. Below is the EDUCAUSE list of top 10 issues, followed by UT Austin's responses and goals for the coming year:

  1. Funding IT—Approved ITS Fiscal Year 2011-2012 Capital Budget, and ITS Financials Reflect Capital Budgets for the Next Five Years
  2. Administrative/ERP/Information Systems—Complete Administrative Systems Master Plan (ASMP) and Move to Open Systems
  3. Teaching and Learning with Technology—Decide Learning Management System Direction, Define Data Management Best Practices
  4. Security—Continue Investments in IT Security, Upgrade the Building Access Control System
  5. Mobile Technologies—Create Mobility Strategy
  6. Agility/Adaptability/Responsiveness—Identify IT Needs for Researchers, continue Longhorn Innovation Fund for Technology (LIFT) Grants
  7. Governance, Portfolio/Project Management—IT Governance Established, Applications Team Implementing More Portfolio and Project Management Tools
  8. Infrastructure/Cyberinfrastructure—Solidify the Voice Over Internet Protocol (VoIP) Strategy, Begin Building Out the Data Center's East Hall, Upgrade Web Infrastructure
  9. Disaster Recovery / Business Continuity—Decide Implement More Disaster Recovery for Critical IT Services
  10. Security—Continue Investments in IT Security, Upgrade the Building Access Control System
  11. Strategic Planning—Determine Future Directions from IT Governing Groups(e.g., Mobility, VoIP, ASMP)

IT governance goals for 2011-2012, endorsed by the Strategic IT Accountability Board (SITAB), seek to address these challenges and reflect the increasing need to balance strategic, long-range planning with the ability to respond—rapidly and effectively—to new trends and emergent technologies.

As a prime example, the growth of mobile technologies on campus and the increasing demand for wireless services requires new ways of thinking about how IT supports high priority initiatives, such as the Course Transformation Program. Honest discussion focusing on the changing IT needs of campus and how to meet those needs with finite resources is essential to finding and implementing cost effective strategic solutions. Campus-wide engagement with these issues—via IT governance—is really encouraging!

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