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Shaping the Future of Higher Education

Helping you arrive at intelligent decisions supported by evidence

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Advancing Higher Education

Higher Education Consulting and Technical Assistance

The National Center for Higher Education Management Systems (NCHEMS) is a nonprofit, nonpartisan postsecondary education consulting organization specializing in research, development, and technical assistance that helps states, systems, and institutions adopt forward-looking/future-oriented policies and practices. Since 1969, we’ve been engaging higher education leaders and state and system-level policy makers, providing the insights and intelligence they need to forge a pathway to more successful higher education.

We’ve been advancing higher education thought leadership for over 50 years. Our team understands the complex issues associated with navigating the higher education landscape, and we can help you create innovative solutions that address the policy initiatives affecting you. Together, we can shape the future of postsecondary education, ensuring that it meets the needs of our community for years to come.

The higher education industry is wrestling with a wide range of challenges that have placed significant pressure on states and their institutions to respond with future-oriented policies and practices. Some of the most pressing issues being grappled with include:

  • A growing divide in perceptions about the value of a postsecondary education
  • Concerns over affordability and limited state funding
  • Demographic changes that are already transforming the students that colleges and universities must serve

Moreover, there is a critical need for our states to ensure that their institutions are positioned to produce more talent to meet the rapidly changing economic needs of the future, as well as to close persistent equity gaps among students from different race/ethnic, income, age, and geographic backgrounds.

These are significant issues that require careful analysis. At NCHEMS, we can help you arrive at creative solutions to these challenges. With our insights and recommendations, you can more confidently make the right policy decisions for the individuals you serve.

Comprehensive Higher Education Consulting Services

At NCHEMS, we offer a wide range of services to help you address the important issues impacting the postsecondary education industry today. Our areas of expertise include:

Our team spends the time necessary to truly understand the context and history behind the projects we take on. We use this background information to help us identify the right data necessary to inform creative solutions to the problems you’re grappling with. Collaboration, innovation, and creativity are crucial to our process – we always engage you as we identify potential solutions, and we base our recommendations on the insights revealed in our robust data analysis.

Creating Positive Outcomes for Higher Education

NCHEMS is a national and international resource for organizations and policymakers in the higher education industry. Our capacity for designing innovative solutions backed by evidence and in partnership with stakeholders has helped shape the actions of policymakers at all levels. The insights we provide have helped our clients achieve a wide range of objectives, including:

  • Solve issues impacting state-level higher education policy
  • Create a more effective plan for long-term higher education policy on the state or organizational level
  • Assess the feasibility of solutions to determine whether they are worth pursuing
  • Develop innovative models for postsecondary student success
  • Identify emerging trends to better prepare for the short- and long-term future of higher education
  • Address institutional funding needs to promote affordability for students by developing strategic finance plans.
  • Increase data analytic capacity of higher education organizations
  • Assist institutions with campus culture for equity gap elimination
  • Increase student success through state and institutional policy and practices
  • Modeling alternatives to illuminate tradeoffs in policy decisions
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Our Knowledge First Framework™

We have a proven Knowledge First Framework™ to ensure you have the critical information and insights to make the most intelligent decisions and implement effective postsecondary education policy.

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Project Highlights

Connecticut Office of Higher Education Regulations Review

The Connecticut Office of Higher Education contracted with NCHEMS to review and revise its regulations governing state authorization and program approval of private postsecondary institutions and private occupational schools. Their current regulations have not been updated in over 20 years. In addition, NCHEMS has been asked to make recommendations for statutory changes related to OHE’s oversight of postsecondary education in the state.

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State Council of Higher Education for Virginia Cost Study and Funding Need Project

NCHEMS has begun a major project to redesign the funding policies in use for providing appropriations to Virginia’s public institutions. NCHEMS will be gathering information about other states’ base funding approaches, analyzing data on institutional revenues, expenditures, and student outcomes, investigating opportunities to drive improvements in efficiency and effectiveness, engaging with stakeholders, and developing a model for examining how design features under consideration will impact results.

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21st Century Distance Education Guidelines

NCHEMS interviewed practitioners, scholars, accreditors and state regulators to discover the best approaches to and concerns about the future of distance learning. Several accrediting commissions (regional and specialized) will use them to develop new standards for quality assurance for distance learning programs. This work was done in partnership with NC-SARA. The final guidelines are posted on the Council for Regional Accrediting Commissions’ (C-RAC) website.

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