First of a series: Using the principles of “choice architecture” and enrollment management software, admissions offices can structure student outreach to guide students toward good decisions that lead to student success.
College and university officials tend to bristle at the suggestion that they should “think like a business.” While it’s critical for institutions to be transparent in their operations and to use resources such as data analytics to drive change within and across the organization, higher education is not a traditional corporate enterprise. Institutions face unique challenges, many of which do not fit neatly on a balance sheet.
Take a walk on campus and ask the first five people you encounter for directions to the office of institutional research (IR). Here’s betting you get five puzzled looks.
Researchers have always operated in the background. Men and women sitting in rooms, poring over spreadsheets and databases, searching for answers to the problems that plague our institutions: logistics, enrollment, academics, completion. The list goes on.
Higher education is percolating with talk about the promise of big data. You can’t attend a higher-education conference or even have a conversation about student success without the topic cropping up.