Review of the Educause Top 10 IT Issues for 2022

December 13, 2021 |  News
2 min

This year, Educause breaks the mold with urgent, active and even contentious words in the Top 10 IT Issues of 2022.

Every year, Educause releases the Top 10 IT Issues in higher education. This year is a bit different as schools are recovering from all the shortcomings the pandemic brought to light, and innovating in new ways.

As higher education is being redefined, so is ITs role in it. Rather than just providing services or bending to budgets, IT teams have been deeply involved in rebuilding campuses and reimagining course offerings.

These changes are reflected in the language Educause uses to describe the top 10 IT issues facing higher ed leaders for 2022.

A new way to talk about IT issues

The language of the year’s top 10 IT issues has changed in urgency and perspective.

Previous years used big picture words that encouraged universities to slowly invest more in IT or start thinking about a change in direction.

However this year, Educause breaks the mold with urgent, active and even contentious words. The pandemic and recovery efforts have created a huge shift.

2020 / 2021 Language 2022 Language
Evolve / Extinct
Shrink / Expand
Word choice comparison by year

What was once a call to “align” and “ensure” is now a plea to avoid an impending “crisis” and “extinction.” 

As opposed to previous years, there’s also a major shift in how the top 10 IT issues reference students: 

“For the first time, the list looks at students as more than learners and as more than customers who need services.”


The pandemic years have shown us what forward-thinking leaders have offered for some time: that students aren’t just customers of higher ed, they are people with ambitious dreams and complex needs. It’s the institution’s job to create opportunities with all of these considerations in place to ensure each student’s success.

As many institutions have learned, making these changes requires a significant  investment of both time and financial resources. 

2022 IT Themes

The top 10 IT issues this year are divided into 3 themes:

  • Shared Vision, Shared Strategy
  • Student Success as Institutional Success
  • The Sustainable Business Model
Educause themes

Here’s the recap of each issue:

Educause 2022 Top 10 IT Issues

  1. Cyber Everywhere! Are We Prepared? Developing processes and controls, institutional infrastructure, and institutional workforce skills to protect and secure data and supply-chain integrity
  2. Evolve or Become Extinct: Accelerating digital transformation to improve operational efficiency, agility, and institutional workforce development
  3. Digital Faculty for a Digital Future: Ensuring faculty have the digital fluency to provide creative, equitable, and innovative engagement for students
  4. Learning from COVID-19 to Build a Better Future: Using digitization and digital transformation to produce technology systems that are more student-centric and equity-minded
  5. The Digital versus Brick-and-Mortar Balancing Game: Creating a blended campus to provide digital and physical work and learning spaces
  6. From Digital Scarcity to Digital Abundance: Achieving full, equitable digital access for students by investing in connectivity, tools, and skills
  7. The Shrinking World of Higher Education or an Expanded Opportunity? Developing a technology-enhanced post-pandemic institutional vision and value proposition
  8. Weathering the Shift to the Cloud: Creating a cloud and SaaS strategy that reduces costs and maintains control
  9. Can We Learn from a Crisis? Creating an actionable disaster-preparation plan to capitalize on pandemic-related cultural change and investments
  10. Radical Creativity: Helping students prepare for the future by giving them tools and learning spaces that foster creative practices and collaborations

To dive into each issue, visit the Educause Top 10 IT Issues page. 

As we can see from these issues and themes, transformation is no longer an option or an ambition, it’s a survival strategy. And the strategy will require significant action and investment moving forward.

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