internet of things

Growing Trend: Internet of Things expands into college and university curricula

Higher education leaders and policymakers are urging institutions to take steps to prepare for the IoT's expansion.

The Internet of Things (IoT) is coming (well, actually, it’s here), and with it, a demand for skilled graduates who know the ins and outs of connected devices. As colleges and universities work to address the challenges the IoT presents from an IT perspective, they also are addressing the needs of their students who will pursue IoT-related careers.

Developing a comprehensive IoT strategy still remains the biggest challenge for industry adoption, according to 46.3 percent of 200 IT professionals surveyed at the Sensors Expo in San Jose by Northeastern University-Silicon Valley. Another top barrier for wide scale adoption involves security concerns (38.8 percent).

Worldwide spending on IoT security will reach $348 million in 2016, a 23.7 percent increase from 2015 spending of $281.5 million, according to Gartner, Inc. Spending on IoT security is expected to reach $547 million in 2018.

Increased efficiency is the main reason that businesses are investing in IoT development, according to 38.3 percent of survey respondents, followed by the pursuit of a competitive advantage (28.4 percent). The biggest area of current expertise in the IoT field involves hardware engineering, according to 30.4 percent of respondents, but the area of greatest interest for further skills training involves sensors development (57.7 percent), followed by systems design and integration (32.3 percent).

(Next page: How IoT growth will impact higher education’s curricula)

Laura Ascione