Students Envisioning the Future
Lind, T; Cajander, Å; Sandblad, B; Daniels, M; Lárusdóttir, M; McDermott, R; Clear, T
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How can students be included as critical stakeholders in the systems and services provided by a university? To address the whole student experience, we engaged students and employees at a large Swedish university in a vision seminar process to elicit how these groups envisioned an ideal future university, and the necessary changes to technology and organisational structures required to achieve this ideal version. The process entailed six four-hour workshops with four groups consisting of six participants each. A survey instrument was used to follow up on the participants' experiences of participating in the vision seminar process and their thoughts on the future of the university. The results show that the participating students were more positive compared to the university employees. The students envisioned harmonized interdepartmental systems, seamlessly integrating a variety of services into one university-provided solution. The employees envisioned their future work as flexible, enabled by technology providing excellent support without hindering pedagogical and organisational development. Using technological frames, these visions of the future are identified, analysed and discussed in relation to the quality of university education and a holistic view on students' university experience. Finally we discuss the broader implications of the visions on the future of university education.