3 min read

Elevating the Higher Education Student Experience With No-Code


Today’s colleges and universities face a unique, but contradictory challenge: They’re large, established institutions steeped in history and tradition—but they must also primarily serve young, tech-oriented students with digital-first expectations. 

According to the National Center for Education Statistics, there were 4,034 degree-granting post-secondary institutions in the United States in the 2018–19 school year. Between so many institutions competing for a limited number of prospective students—and the COVID-19 pandemic making distance learning functionality increasingly vital—traditional universities are under increasing pressure to update their offerings for the digital age.

To make discussions about transformation even more complicated, federal funding for education is under increasing threat, which could place institutions under even greater financial pressure. While tighter budgets may cut into an institution’s appetite for large-scale IT investments, students’ expectations for modern digital experiences remain.

Building for Modern Prospective Students

Today’s prospective students are digital natives accustomed to dealing with consumer- and convenience-focused applications—and they expect the same level of engagement when it comes to education. As prospective students consider where to apply, a university’s public-facing digital infrastructure can influence the choice to attend—or not. The same can influence current students’ decisions to be advocates for the school—or not.


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How important is student-facing tech? Consider that the average teen spends a staggering 9 hours a day with digital technology. With all this time spent interacting with businesses and brands online, a university’s digital presence will inevitably shape a prospective student’s perception. 

For higher education institutions considering what kinds of experiences they can transform to best reach their audience, here are just a few use cases that would go a long way in elevating the student experience:

  • Interactive campus map applications to help prospective students and visitors easily navigate the campus

  • Online student portals to check grades, submit assignments, browse the course catalog, communicate with professors, and more

  • Alumni community forums for networking and keeping up with campus news

  • Career development boards that make it easy for to students to apply for job and internship opportunities

  • Counseling portals that help students securely and confidentially find mental and emotional health resources

Struggling to Adapt? Try No-Code.

The reality is that many universities already understand that students have rapidly changing expectations—and they likely even have ideas for which processes they’d update if given the chance. Unfortunately, elevating and digitizing the student experience is usually easier said than done. 

For starters, there’s a good chance that a university’s existing systems are built on outdated or off-the-shelf legacy technologies that require constant maintenance—many institutions wind up spending most of their IT resources just trying to keep systems up and running. This ends up further contributing to their technical debt and keeps them from expanding their offerings. 

To keep up with student demand for digital experiences while remaining on budget, higher education institutions should look to no-code. A no-code platform allows institutions to rapidly build applications while using only a fraction of the resources that would be needed in a traditional code-based approach. 

Higher education organizations need a way to build on a budget without falling into the trap of just maintaining legacy tech. 

Higher education organizations need a way to build on a budget without falling into the trap of just maintaining legacy tech. With traditional app development, you’re often dealing with wildly extended timelines and a lack of understanding between those who are building the application and those who know what students need. By bridging the gap between the business and IT teams, universities can trust that the needs of the institution and its prospective students will be thoroughly considered in the creation of their apps. And with powerful student-facing digital experiences, institutions can stand out from the competition and focus on providing a well-rounded education. 

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