Adult Nontraditional Students Rise in Higher Education

Edtech is Fueling the Growth of Nontraditional Students in Higher Ed with Flexibility and Accessibility.

Adult, nontraditional students are already a major part of the education landscape, and their growth is not slowing down. As the number of adult students rise, edtech plays an ever-increasing role in helping these nontraditional learners succeed. Adult learning requires convenient and easy to use tools that enhance their education experience.  Finding a work, life, and education balance isn’t easy. But, edtech can help by providing reliable, convenient tools that ensure student success.

The adult, nontraditional student typically has a different class schedule than that of the traditional student. And, schedule conflicts arise beyond the class schedule. Take, for example, proctored exams – an area in which we have significant experience. Our data tells us that most students take their exams outside of normal business hours; often later in the evenings. Some of our heaviest use time is at night, well after traditional testing centers are closed. And, bands of heavy use times can make it difficult for students to schedule time with a live proctor. But, exams are just one example of the scheduling challenges these nontraditional students face. Consider the challenges of coordinating group projects, attending office hours, or peer-to-peer learning and networking opportunities; all of which play a critical role in the growth and development of our students.

While we often assume that our digital-native traditional students are tech-savvy, our technology tools should make no such assumptions about any students, particularly our nontraditional student population. Well-designed technology tools cater to the potential learning curve of the user and focus on providing an easier student experience. The best tools serve every student, from the least to the most tech-savvy.

Although serving these nontraditional students can provide real challenges and costs to universities, there are significant benefits. Utilizing edtech options and online learning fuels a university’s growth. Schools can grow without having to build out the necessary infrastructure. Online courses can alleviate on-campus student crowding and overall costs for universities.

Technology tools can, and must, continue to work to enhance the student experience in a user-friendly manner. It is central to everything we do here at ProctorFree. We are committed to serving the needs of all higher ed students and ensuring that every student can access convenient, easy tools that enhance the learning experience.

Interested in learning more about how we help all higher ed students? Contact Us