Information technology alignment and university success

Adam L Hedden, Purdue University


This research investigated the importance of the alignment between the information technology department and the business function of a Big Ten university. Two business-IT alignment (BIA) models were identified as the most widely used, which were the Strategic Alignment Model (SAM) that was developed by Henderson and Venkatraman (1993), and the Strategic Alignment Maturity Model (SAMM) that was developed by Luftman (2000). These models were developed for businesses and one cannot assume that a BIA model developed for business would be applicable to a Big Ten university. The thesis identified the Luftman SAMM model as the focus because it was built on the SAM model and more importantly it laid out a framework for businesses to advance through the different levels of alignment. This thesis tried to answer the question, “Which parts of the Luftman Strategic Alignment Maturity Model have the greatest impact in aligning the business-IT strategic goals of a Big Ten university”? Through a quantitative approach, 717 questions from the annual 2014 EDUCAUSE survey were used to analyze and rank each university within the SAMM model. Each of the six SAMM criteria was then assessed a level of how greatly they impacted the overall alignment of the Big Ten universities. This research concluded with an analysis that showed there are multiple factors that contribute to the overall success of a university, as well as suggestions for future research on the study and development of a business-IT alignment model specifically for a higher education institution.




McCartney, Purdue University.

Subject Area

Business administration|Information Technology

Off-Campus Purdue Users:
To access this dissertation, please log in to our
proxy server