Research in the higher education industry provides a unique challenge due to its ever-changing landscape in conjunction with the high level of competition present in the industry.  It’s no secret that this industry is faced with diminishing prospects for revenue growth, which provides a compelling reason to make sure valuable resources are being utilized to the fullest – to generate value for those seeking a higher education.

Generating value that potential students are demanding requires more differentiation in the marketplace and better insights.  Being a large, well known university doesn’t build institutional immunity for the need to create increased value in the long run. In this competitive environment, the institutions that are able to develop effective growth strategies that allow them to capitalize on their strengths will flourish.

It is not only important to generate value for future students. It is equally important to measure the perceptions and behaviors of current students and faculty.  Having a third party research firm is essential when conducting internal research, because it provides for an unbiased approach and gives respondents an assurance that they will not be singled out for their responses.

relevant experience

The Olinger Group has experience conducting market research with students, faculty, and administration as well as testing educational materials/programs.  In one instance, a specially-designed program for students to learn how to make healthy lifestyle decisions was tracked over a period of time to uncover whether the program was making a difference.   Another example comes from a study that involved understanding how potential students pick/decide where to go to school and marketing materials that were attractive to them, among other things.  Other studies in this industry have included awareness and satisfaction with benefits being offered to the faculty and administration, satisfaction with courses/curriculum, and effectiveness of recruiting.

major clients/projects in this industry

Laureate Education (International Universities), Holt McDougal, Tulane University/Tulane Primate Center, Young Leadership Council (YLC), and Healthy Lifestyle Choices

types of studies typically conducted

Recruiting/Messaging Studies, Employee Satisfaction, Brand Awareness/Image/Usage, Human Resources/Benefits Preferences, Educational Content Optimization/Testing, Satisfaction with Educational Content, Behavioral Tracking (from educational content), Market Studies, On-site Interviews/Intercepts, Focus Groups, In-depth Interviews