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Higher ed 2024 survey of college and university chief academic officers

May 15, 2024 Watermark Insights

Higher education leaders value the input of Chief Academic Officers (CAOs) because they bring expertise in areas such as academic strategy, accreditation compliance, and resource allocation — all of which are crucial for the overall success and reputation of their institution.

This 72-page report breaks down how provosts view their institution and higher education as a whole in areas such as artificial intelligence (AI), budget and finances, recruiting and retaining faculty, how the current political landscape is shaping free speech on campus, the effectiveness of assessment and accreditation, and much more.

The survey was conducted by Inside Higher Ed and Hanover Research and consists of data collected from 331 CAOs, representing 159 public, 165 private non-profit, and seven for-profit U.S. institutions. 

Some key highlights:

  • The majority of participants (83%) believe that faculty find their role in assessing student learning too labor intensive.
  • 39% of provosts feel that their job is more focused on financial management than academic issues.
  • Regarding the use of AI, 20% say their institution has policies in place, while 63% say there are policies currently under development.
  • More than half of provosts are highly concerned about how the 2024 election results will impact free inquiry at their institution, with younger provosts showing the least concern.

Download this report for free! Take a deep dive into how provosts view critical issues within the higher education landscape right now.

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