Institutional Standardization of Data Management for Higher Education
Aside from adopting educational courses and practices for students and faculty, data management is an ongoing issue for higher education institutions. Navigating the fluctuations of data can be challenging as lack of administrative initiative, trained staff, and data quality are consistently problematic. Areas like Human Resources, Finance, and Student Administration Systems are shown to be the subject of most concern for data quality in larger institutions. Modern systems must be able to handle real-time data situations such as bill payment and student enrollment in correct courses, as well as aggregate information gathered by data programs for further management and planning. In 2005, the National Science Foundation observed that “digital data collections are at the heart of fundamentally new approaches to research and education.” It is no surprise that research oriented universities tends to offer more advanced means of dealing with data, including complex IT infrastructures for data storage, data management, and data analytics.
Colleges, universities, and graduate programs are widening their approach to extend datastudies in broader areas of learning that extend beyond purely scientific focuses. Entertainment industry, creative departments such as Literature and Art have foundations in research as well, and utilize forms of data management or analysis in a variety of areas. Literature, the most language based of all studies, works from data accumulated from texts, journals, and libraries (both digital and tactile). Those that major in Literature must be comfortable working from large quantities of hard copy and electronic information, converting to more workable formats when needed, and forming original opinions based upon the analysis of all data. As many Literature majors go into publishing or media careers, obtaining data management skills early on during college or graduate level years can be of the utmost aid. Similarly, art based majors such as Painting Restoration, Art History, or Museum Curation are disciplines of study that are rooted within the concept of data. Practical, working skill set of art related data is beneficial for those looking to move on to careers in the art world. Without exception, data management is a common theme across all departments in major universities, community colleges, graduate universities, and trade schools.
For successful data management, educational institutions require maximum academic and business value from institutional data utilization, particularly given the growth of volumes of data usage in universities in subsequent years. Yet a vital aspect of data management extends to data security, especially given the sheer amount of personal information contained within data stores in educational institutions. Special treatment towards student and faculty records is of paramount importance as social security numbers, bank accounts, credit cards, addresses, birth dates, and more are held within administrative files on electronic data storage systems. An enterprising approach towards security is necessary, which is why many universities now employ full time data librarians, and restrictive access protocols for large scale dataadministration. Advocating expertise in regards to data management throughout a campus can make a significant difference for maintaining the safety of students, information, and institutional related business endeavors.
Data Management as a Fundamental Tool for Advanced Education
Both administratively and academically, data management has become a fundamental course of action for the continued application of information organization, analysis, and expertise. During these progressive years of technological based data methodology, educational institutions, including their faculty members, staff, and student bodies, must have active working comprehension of all data related themes. Instilling the importance and value of a data based skill set is the responsibility of all educational institutes in order to continue to produce knowledgeable graduates.