On June 1, 2022, Jenzabar, a leading provider of software and solutions for higher education, announced the release of Campus Marketplace, a non-credit course management platform. Campus Marketplace and the recently acquired Spark451 serve as centerpieces for its newly unveiled The Campus Movement initiative geared toward expanding learning opportunities for enrolled and unenrolled students.
Jenzabar’s introduction of Campus Marketplace breathes new competitive life into the non-credit course management platform market, which has recently experienced a significant contraction. Campus Marketplace includes the core functionality of the other non-credit course management platforms, including course and curriculum management, financing and payment, enrollment management, marketing campaigns (e.g., branding, email, tracking), and reporting. Tambellini sees the release of Campus Marketplace as timely as demand for upskilling and reskilling opportunities has increased substantially in recent years, and the job market continues to be strong.
However, two aspects of the Jenzabar Campus Marketplace are particularly noteworthy. First, the native and seamless integration of Campus Marketplace with Jenzabar One allows institutions to attract and track enrolled and unenrolled students to non-credit courses and programs. This functionality allows students enrolled in degree programs to document non-credit experiences, skills, and certifications. It also provides institutions the opportunity to give unenrolled students better access to courses and programs that are not typically offered by continuing education and professional development programs.
Second, Campus Marketplace enables institutions to “unbundle” courses from degree programs and offer them to unenrolled students. In a conversation with Jenzabar representatives, they emphasized that unbundling courses is not intended to begin a wholesale deconstruction of the curriculum as we know it. Instead, it is meant to offer existing or new skills-based courses in formats that best serve institutions’ needs. To paraphrase one example, unbundling a tig welding course for a non-degree student does not fundamentally undermine the curriculum that leads to a welding certificate for degree-seeking students. It may well lead that student to pursue such a degree.
That said, it remains to be seen if institutions that select Jenzabar One and embrace The Campus Movement will offer sections or slots of more broadly traditional courses to unenrolled students and, if so, which types of courses or programs might venture into such a space. For example, STEM institutions might find this an appealing way to attract and nurture new potential students, or they might reject the idea of non-degree students enrolling in traditional courses. It may, however, offer degree programs with smaller budgets an opportunity to increase enrollments and revenue by expanding the potential student base for a set of courses.
Tambellini will closely follow the growth and adoption of Jenzabar One and the impact of The Campus Movement on higher education institutions.
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