Since the introduction of COVID-19 in 2020 and the travel restrictions imposed, there has been an increasing demand for University's to offer more remote ways of learning, teaching and support services. In order to attract future and retain current students, the ANU must be able to integrate the physical and digital campus experience so those working remotely feel part of the campus community.
Why is the project needed?
In 2020, ANU built a proof-of-concept virtual desktop solution, however, there are limitations in the way it is currently configured. Without a robust, sustainable technology platform for students to remotely access desktop environments, ANU is at risk of losing students to attend Universities closer to home, or that offer more advanced remote ways of working.
What is a Virtual Desktop Solution?
A virtual desktop solution enables students and staff to access the specialised software and applications they need from anywhere at any time. Staff and students can access necessary applications from their own device and allows them to work remotely, complete assessments and undertake software-specific study.
What will the project deliver?
In collaboration with an identified delivery partner, the Desktop Virtualisation Project will:
- implement a cost effective, sustainable virtual desktop solution that is scalable and flexible to meet changing University needs
- provide seamless access to the digital campus, no matter the physical location of staff and students
- review and update ITS policies to align with the virtual desktop solution being implemented, including Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) practices
- update support processes including Information Commons and examination rooms, including BYOD
What are the benefits?
- The ability for students to access the same virtual applications at home, on campus or any other location of their choice
- An increased number of courses that require access to specialist software will to be able offer remote teaching and learning using a virtual desktop capability
- A supported virtual desktop infrastructure platform that is operating at agreed service levels
The Desktop Virtualisation Project is part of the Digital Tomorrow Program which is driving technology key initiatives that will establish a future-ready IT Services Division. The Project is already underway and aims to be completed by the beginning of Semester 2, 2022.