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On the Road with Oracle Student Cloud

Susan Beidler
Sr. Director, Product Strategy

At Oracle, we recognize that our customers are innovators. We have listened to them as we design new features for Campus Solutions and now we want to extend the reach of their innovation to Oracle’s Student Cloud.

We took our Oracle Student Cloud team on the road, to absorb insight from our higher education customers and their applicants, students, and alumni on the designs for the student system of the future.  Working in tandem with the Higher Ed User Group (HEUG), our mission is to engage in user research with as many customers as we can, and the HEUG’s regional conferences provide the perfect venue for the interaction.  

Students want a personalized, integrated and coherent online experience. Institutions need flexible systems that support the spectrum of today’s educational models, and that empower data-driven decision-making. With a laser focus on student success, Oracle’s Student Cloud provides a comprehensive approach to the student lifecycle that enables institutions to anticipate students’ needs, illuminate their academic path, and empower them to succeed.  

One of our stops was the South Central Regional HEUG Conference, held in July at the University of Houston. We were able to talk with admissions officers and students about how technology can improve the student experience.

Admissions administrators were asking for features like these:

  • Automate everything possible - especially transfer credit, as the number of transfer students is expected to grow over the coming years. Many students begin their educational journey at community colleges and then move to four-year colleges.  
  • Bring more reporting and analytics to the functional user
  • Enhance applicant communications throughout the entire admissions lifecycle, from initial contact to enrollment. 

The Student Cloud Design team also met with students to hear how a student system could better support their academic planning and class enrollment efforts and to get their reaction to prototype designs. Students are concerned about enrolling in the right courses and showed us some of the creative techniques they used to get the best class schedule. They often struggle with getting the appropriate courses, in the correct sequence, and from their preferred professors, to meet degree requirements.

Today’s students have grown up in a culture where a digital consumer interaction is the norm, and they expect targeted communications and personalized interactions.  Many wished for a similar experience for class enrollment, where the system would programmatically understand the student’s needs and scheduling requirements. 

Our early versions of two new applications made a positive impression on our student user group. The Guided Pathways app is designed to recommend a best-fit sequence of courses to meet an academic goal, while the Scheduling app is designed to suggest an optimal set of class sections for an enrollment period. 

Our test group of students were enthusiastic about both apps, and we captured a lot of positive feedback including:  

  • “That would be awesome!”
  • “I wouldn’t have to use my Excel spreadsheet any more…”
  • “An app that tells me what courses I need to take would be amazing!”

I want to extend a big thank you to the University of Houston and the HEUG staff who facilitated our Student Cloud interviews.  We look forward to seeing more of our customers at upcoming HEUG Regional conferences – find the conference nearest you on the conferences site.  We’re picking up a hat or a mug from every institution we talk with, and hope to add your logo to our collection. 

A big THANK YOU/Tip of the Hat to the University of Houston and the HEUG organizers for facilitating the Student Cloud interviews!

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