RPA in education: what it is and its benefits

RPA? You might not be too familiar with this acronym. But if we mention “Robotic Process Automation,” you might be...
12 April 2023

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RPA in education: what it is and its benefits

RPA? You might not be too familiar with this acronym. But if we mention “Robotic Process Automation,” you might be able to get an idea of what those three letters at the beginning of this post mean.

Today, robotic automation of processes is already a valuable tool in many sectors, including education. Properly used, these modernization processes can significantly improve sustainability and accessibility in education. 

But what does their use really imply? 

In this post, we will briefly explain what RPA is and the benefits it can bring to companies and organizations in the education sector.

Meaning of Robotic Process Automation (RPA)

RPA stands for Robotic Process Automation and refers to the automation of tasks using specialized software that mimics human action, something we could define as ‘robots.’

These ‘robots’ are computer programs that can manipulate software applications, capture data, perform calculations, and communicate with other systems to automate repetitive, rule-based tasks, freeing human workers to concentrate on higher value-added tasks.

Processes that can be automated with RPA include, but are not limited to, data entry, extracting and processing information from documents, performing calculations, updating records, generating reports, and communicating with other systems. 

RPA is used in various industries, including financial services, healthcare, manufacturing, utilities, and government, although we will focus on the education sector in this post.

RPA means robotic process automation

RPA benefits for education

As we have already mentioned in the previous paragraph, RPA automation has great relevance in the education sector, as it can significantly improve the efficiency, accuracy, and quality of educational and administrative processes.

These are the main benefits it can offer the industry:

  1. Automating administrative tasks: RPA can automate administrative tasks such as student records management, payment processing, and class schedules, allowing educational administrators to focus on more strategic tasks.
  1. Improved efficiency: By automating repetitive, rules-based tasks, RPA can increase efficiency and accuracy in educational processes, saving educators and students time and effort.
  1. Increased data accuracy and quality: By automating data entry, RPA can reduce human error and improve data quality, leading to better decision-making and educational planning.
  1. Personalized learning: RPA can be used to collect and analyze student performance data, enabling educators to personalize learning and improve each student’s educational experience.
  1. Cost savings: Automating administrative tasks can reduce operational costs, allowing educational institutions to invest more resources in educational programs and services.

But how can you automate your processes and benefit from these five points?

Well, through the use of RPA software tools.

Benefits of RPA

RPA software in education, what are the main ones?

Within the educational universe, several RPA software applications are used to automate administrative tasks, improve the efficiency and quality of educational processes, or manage student records and class schedules.

Examples include Blue Prism, UiPath, Automation Anywhere, PowerSchool, or even LMSs such as Blackboard Learn. 

But beyond all of these management tasks that can be carried out through robotic automation of processes, we can also highlight the following.

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Automation of research processes

RPA can be used to automate research processes in education, such as collecting data and extracting information from multiple sources for analysis and reporting.

By automating much of the research process, the investigation team could save time and resources, reduce human error, and obtain more accurate and reliable results

In addition, this would allow investigators to focus on more strategic tasks and more advanced analysis.

Automation of admissions processes

Another use for Robotic Process Automation is automating educational institution admissions processes, from collecting applicant information to screening and accepting candidates.

In this light, the use of advanced data analytics techniques could help the university to identify students with the greatest academic potential and ensure that they are on the right path to academic success.

Automation of student support processes

This technique can also be used to automate student support processes, such as financial aid application management, tutoring schedules, and student support.

Consider that a university has thousands of students enrolled, and the student support staff receives hundreds of requests for help daily. The university could use RPA to automate many of these processes.

Automation of assessment processes

RPA technology can also be used to automate assessment processes, such as test marking, assignment evaluation, and grade report generation.

This way, the educational institution could reduce human errors and obtain more accurate and reliable results. 

In addition, personalized feedback could help students identify areas in which they need to improve and provide them with tools to do so. 

Ultimately, this could lead to more effective education and better student results.

As you will have seen in this last point, by combining automated assessment processes with SMOWL proctoring tools, you will be able to ensure fully comprehensive and secure assessments, helping to build equity and trust in online education.  

Ask us for a free demo and see how digital proctoring of tests and assessments can also become a great ally of your automated processes.

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