A new study suggests that colleges and universities are increasingly choosing the giants of the IT industry to manage finances, student records, and human resources--continuing a gradual drift away from small- to medium-size companies.

Nearly 300 U.S. universities selected a student information system from a "top tier" higher-education software company between 2003 and 2007, according to a report released by independent market research firm Syngery3, which tracks higher education's software trends.

A spokesman for Synergy3 said numbers from before 2003 were unavailable, but the survey shows a clear shift to companies such as Oracle PeopleSoft and SunGard--companies that are also known for


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