The January Deadline

The January Deadline

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Just like Storm Eunice passed through the UK, so did the Application Deadline for students along with the data that followed, but what does it all mean?

For a number of years now, universities across the country have been challenged by the decline in the number of 18 year-olds in the market, which has had a direct impact on application rates during this time. However, for the second year in a row, we have seen over 600,000 applicants looking to enter HE in 2022.

While there may have been a 1% drop in applicant numbers compared to 2021, we saw a record high of 373,340 applicants looking to enter HE, a 4% growth on 2021, and 14% growth compared to 2020. Demand is changing for the positive and we are about to enter a ‘golden age’ where exponential growth is expected to be achieved amongst this primary audience segment.

Some of the more popular subjects amongst 18 years olds this year include computing, humanities, communications, and media – which all saw 10+% YoY growth.

The challenge universities face now, is not how to reach as many potential students in a declining market, but instead who provides the greatest opportunity to convert and how can we best engage with them.

Source: UCAS

But with opportunities, there come developing threats in the market as well. For the first time in a decade, we saw a drop in applicants amongst all prospective students aged 19 and above, with the largest decline seen amongst those aged 25-29.

Brexit and COVID-19 (two words we were hoping never to say again!) are just two factors that have had a much larger impact on the decision to enter HE amongst those aged 19 and above. Without a better understanding of what motivates these prospective students, it will be harder than ever to recruit – especially for those that rely heavily on mature students.

In possibly the least surprising news, we have seen a decrease of 25% in applicants from the EU, but international demand excluding the EU has seen a 5% rise, with China, India, and Hong Kong leading the way – China saw a record-high number of applicants in 2022.

While we have passed a key milestone for 2022 enrolment, there is still a long way to go for universities and a lot can be done to either increase your market share or meet your recruitment targets.

How knowledgeable are you on the student journey and how best to engage with your audience?

Do you know where market opportunity truly lies?

Is your data being effectively implemented into your student recruitment strategy?

Education Cubed are here to help.

Vivek - Education Cubed

VIVEK EVJENO

ACCOUNT DIRECTOR

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