How Can EMIS be Designed and Implemented in Ways That Make Them Useful?

Part of the learning brief series

A guide for

  • Decision-makers
  • EdTech researchers
  • Developmental organisations
  • Non-governmental organisations
  • Government bodies
  • Bureaus of statistics

Why this matters

Education management information systems (EMIS) integrate fragmented processes and functions into linked data that is meaningful in planning and policymaking. The systems can be useful in generating foundational data upon which strategic insights for decision-making in education are based. However, while EMIS as a tool for data collection and management have been widely understood, there is still a way to go in integrating EMIS into processes within the education system. Read on to explore insights on integrating EMIS in ways that are useful and usable across a range of stakeholders.

Key insights to improve practice

  • Optimising for the utility to ensure that key functions and processes account for the structural needs of everyone – from students and teachers to governmental decision-makers
  • Optimising for usability by streamlining users’ interactions with the system so that perceived existing needs are addressed and barriers to ongoing use are minimised

Areas for further exploration

To ensure the design and implementation of EMIS is useful and usable, you should consider:

  • How can EMIS funding be made more sustainable once donor support is depleted?
  • How can dashboards be designed for effective understanding of what actions are needed to respond to available data?
  • How can information systems be integrated across sectors to unlock the next frontier of data for decision-making?

Useful tools and resources

A curated list of resources from EdTech experts to help continue your exploration of this topic.

Re-imagining the future: Education Management Information Systems – International seminar

Improving EMIS data on Inclusive Education to Effectively Monitor SDG4

Quick insights on one page

Dive into our one-page summary for quick, practical guidance. Click the image to view, print, or download. 


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Adam, T., & Mitchell, J. (2024). How Can EMIS be Designed and Implemented in Ways That Make Them Used and Useful? [Learning Brief]. EdTech Hub.

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