Graduate registration has long been a significant component of numerous organizations’ total enrollment photo. However, lately, we seen institutions offering even greater focus on their graduate recruitment and enrollment techniques, particularly in the numerous areas of the nation where senior high school graduate share is shrinking and undergraduate enrollment is challenged.
This increased curiosity about graduate enrollment is raising brand-new questions about the best practices for attracting and recruiting graduate pupils. To assist address this requirement for information, Noel-Levitz additionally the National Association of scholar Admissions Professionals (NAGAP) partnered this spring to survey the nation’s graduate recruitment and admissions experts to find out what they believe will be the most effective recruitment methods to recruit master’s degree students.
The survey asked graduate recruitment experts to assess the effectiveness of nearly 80 techniques across all phases associated with the graduate recruitment channel. And because numerous graduate admissions professionals frequently ask Noel-Levitz specialists to assist them to benchmark their funnel rates—especially admit prices and produce rates—the survey additionally asked for channel rates, and for practices regarding title acquisition methods, as recommended questions. (Doctoral student recruitment is actually different from master’s hiring so that the survey centered on recruiting master’s pupils as a starting point for creating the knowledge base.)
The report, 2012 advertising and scholar Recruitment Practices for Master’s-Level scholar Programs, provides an evaluation of responses for each of four various Carnegie establishment types: exclusive doctorate-granting; general public doctorate-granting; exclusive master’s/baccalaureate/specialized institutions; and general public master’s/baccalaureate/specialized organizations. (remember the survey focused on master’s recruitment at each of those kinds of institutions.)
Many of the findings were not unforeseen, but other people were a shock, signaling a profession this is certainly really evolving. In addition surprising was the sheer number of institutions not utilizing techniques ranked as highly effective by their colleagues.
A few major themes surfaced, typical to any or all four types of institutions:
1) Not surprisingly, financial strategies—including offers of assistantships—appeared one of the “top 10” best recruitment practices across all institution types. For both public and exclusive doctorate-granting organizations, assistantships (either with or without a-work responsibility) and offering educational funding during admission had been ranked because the top two techniques. For master’s/baccalaureate/specialized institutions, financial methods appeared on the list of the utmost effective 10 but were more upon record than other advertising and marketing and relationship-building techniques.
2) Beyond capital, the Web had been obviously identified as an important and growing device for graduate recruitment and advertising and marketing. Across all institution types, the practice of keeping graduate program Web pages to entice the interest of queries was within the top 10 techniques. (The Noel-Levitz research carried out in 2007, “E-Expectations” of Graduate Students (PDF), provides useful information about what prospective pupils wanted to get a hold of on line in the past, a demand which has truly grown since.)
3) Maybe slightly surprising had been the strong recommendation of campus visits for graduate recruitment. Most participants from all types of organizations ranked campus visits for admitted students one of the top four techniques. Also, “open houses and visit days to generate inquiries” showed up in the listing for community and private doctorate-granting organizations as well as for public master’s/bachelors/specialized establishments. Although the university check out has long been an accepted device for undergraduate recruitment, these findings suggest that graduate recruiters should include check out opportunities within their recruitment as well.
4) At the application stage, the practice of following up by e-mail with students whose applications are incomplete was highly rated by all institution types. In fact, it is a nearly universal practice, being used by 98 -100 percent of master’s/baccalaureate/specialized colleges, by 88 percent of public doctorate-granting institutions, and by 98 percent of private doctorate-granting institutions.
5) To recruit intercontinental master’s students, keeping Web pages to attract pupil interest and building connections with influencers in embassies, governing bodies, and international companies emerged as key methods for all institution types.
6) To hire adult pupils, partnerships with businesses had been rated as the most efficient training across establishment types.
Also significant within the study was that an important percentage of the participants weren't using techniques that showed up on the top 10 list for their peer team. As an example, “phone telephone calls to admitted pupils from present pupils and graduate assistants” showed up on the list of top practices for public and personal, doctorate-granting institutions, and for private master’s/baccalaureate/specialized establishments. But approximately half of respondents from all of these establishment types weren't using this method at all.