New Zealand Higher Education in the Age of the Global Virtual University
Educational Technology Research and Development
Universities around the world are frequently criticized for being tradition bound and slow to respond to changing conditions in the markets they serve. A review of the New Zealand higher education sector over the past 10 years suggests this criticism is not well founded and, while there are notable differences across national contexts, this finding may generalize to other developed countries as well. The period in question has seen rapid technological advancement impacting on most areas of professional life. In New Zealand, this development has been accompanied by significant political change, a shrinking in the real funding base for universities, and changing patterns of demand for higher education courses. In response to these pressures and supported by the growing ubiquity and power of new media and communication technologies (especially the Internet), institutions are increasingly required to offer flexible access to students who may be dispersed in both time and place, and in full- or part-time employment. This trend is widespread and increases competition in an already market driven sector.
Gunn, C. & Recker, M. (2001). New Zealand Higher Education in the Age of the Global Virtual University. Educational Technology Research and Development, 49(2), 105-114
Originally published by Springer Verlag. Publisher's PDF available through remote link. Earlier version of this paper was presented at "The Role of the University in the Future Information Society Conference," Northern Arizona University, October 1999.