Despite the rising costs, more and more Americans are choosing to pursue an education. The last decade, especially, has ushered in new ways of learning that enable people of all ages the chance to finance and receive certificates and degrees (high school, bachelor’s and associate) that might previously have been unattainable due to accessibility and funding issues. The multitude of online learning programs and massive open online courses (MOOCs), as well as the increasing numbers of for-profit institutions, that exist today, mean more people have access to opportunities as never before. To survive in this competitive environment, schools and colleges must do their due diligence before any new program launch. Both K-12 and higher education institutions must ensure that they meet the demands of the students waiting (and needing) to be served in fiscally responsible ways. They can’t just guess what the needs and issues are and will be in the future, they have to identify and verify them. The only way they can do this is through quality education market research.
What is Education Market Research?
Education market research is the process of collecting and analyzing information about the education industry. The data gleaned is used to uncover key insights about program and/or course content and development; student, staff, customer and client satisfaction; recruitment efforts; branding; market trends; pricing and much, much more.
Why is Education Market Research Important?
As mentioned, the education market is highly competitive. An abundance of programs and courses that are more widely available (i.e., remotely offered) means more students have more options. Schools, and by extension those companies supplying them, must distinguish themselves if they want to attract and sustain the attention they need for success. Education market research helps reveal the current market landscape, including an overview of existing and potential competitors, industry trends and the most effective positioning strategies.
How are Education Market Research Methods Different From Other Market Research Methods?
Quality education market research utilizes the same techniques as all other types of market research projects. Researchers begin with a question. They pick a methodology that suits the problem and addresses any time and budget restraints. They then collect data. Finally, they review the information gathered, make relevant inferences and predictions and report their findings to any and all concerned stakeholders interested in using the information to make informed future decisions. The one caveat: researchers with prior knowledge of an industry – in this case, the education market – are better able to help search for, identify, predict and address the issues in it.
Need More Information?
A good education market research project begins with a solid understanding of the education industry. Such knowledge guides schools, foundations, state/municipal governments and educational supply providers as they support their students, staff members and/or suppliers. Contact our team at Communications for Research (CFR) if you need assistance with any part of your next education research project. We have experience with a variety of industries and can provide you with actionable results that increase your customers’ or clients’ level of satisfaction, as well as your ROI. It’s a “win-win” situation for everyone!