Eduventures® Student Sentiment Research Report™ Reveals Changing Views of College-Bound High School Students

Eduventures® Student Sentiment Research Report™ Reveals Changing Views of College-Bound High School Students


Preferred Content Creators for College Search

“Digital outreach can no longer be just an option for institutions.”

Encoura, an industry-leading education technology organization, today announced the release of the 2022 Eduventures Student Sentiment Research Report. The annual report explores key areas of college search behavior and communication preferences to help higher education enrollment officers create more effective outreach strategies. The report is designed to accompany Eduventures Prospective Student Research™, the nation’s largest institutional identity and college market segmentation study, and Eduventures Admitted Student Research™, which examines how students make enrollment decisions and helps institutions to improve performance.

With a generation of high school students now spending an average of more than 8 hours a day online, and 45% saying they are constantly online, it’s clear that the college search has migrated significantly into the digital space. How can institutions find key segments of students they gravitate to for college information? And more importantly, what channels and content effectively engage these digital natives who decide whether digital content is worth their time in eight seconds?

The Eduventures 2022 Student Sentiment Research Report tracks the college search behaviors and communication preferences of these Gen Z students from initial discovery to enrollment decision. It highlights key insights about the college search activities of college-bound high school students and how the pandemic has shaped the current state of college research.

Key research findings include:

  • Sophomores are actively searching, but may not be ready to connect with colleges yet.
  • Video and image-centric social platforms dominate college search.
  • Students are primarily looking for institutional content on social media, but they are also curious about student content.
  • Video remains the most common online activity, but usage has declined since the start of the pandemic.
  • TikTok is the fastest growing college search platform with a significant 16% increase in student use for college searches over the past two years.
  • With the pandemic disrupting campus events, campus tours have not yet returned to their initial quest.

“Findings from this year’s Student Sentiment Research Report show that while traditional outreach methods still help students in the admissions process, digital outreach can no longer be just a option for institutions. Colleges and universities should digitally engage high school students by creating content that appeals to short attention spans through institutional marketing as well as current student voices,” said Johanna Trovato, senior analyst and lead author of this study.

The pandemic has made a lasting change in the college search for students. It is essential that institutions in a crowded and competitive market find and engage students early on in the digital channels they prefer with perspectives they value. This report provides outreach strategy best practices that will help institutions attract, engage, and convert their most appropriate students.

About Encoura, LLC

Encoura, LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of ACT, is an educational data science and research organization serving more than 2,000 member institutions consisting of public and private colleges and universities across the country. Since 1972, Encoura has been a leading provider of data science, technology and programs serving students, high school teachers, colleges and universities from its offices in Austin, TX and Boston, MA. These solutions represent the link between students making important life decisions and providing the resources and information they need to succeed in their postsecondary education and careers. For more information, visit https://encoura.org.

Members of the media who wish to speak with the author of this report or obtain a copy of the report may contact Todd Boullion at toddb@encoura.org.

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