By Jeremy Tiers, Senior Director of Admissions Services
In our third annual Fall Senior Survey, a joint project between Niche and Tudor Collegiate Strategies, we received 20,045 completed responses from high school seniors graduating in 2023. This survey was posted to Niche and emailed to registered seniors between August 12 and September 25, 2022.
The majority are actively researching colleges, with only 8.5% of respondents telling us they just started doing college research, or they haven’t started yet.
I hope this national overview is helpful and gives you a better idea of what you can do now to better connect with this current class of students and meet your enrollment goals.
- 67% of students were influenced to visit or apply to a college because of the personalized and relevant information they received. Only 9% reported that they were receiving very personalized and relevant outreach and the share of students reporting that all colleges look and sound alike nearly doubled from 15% to 27%.
- For the 51% of students who have not visited a campus yet resources (time, money, transportation, etc.) were the most common reason why not with 20% providing that. Another 19% said that they are waiting to decide where they are going to enroll prior to visiting. Not knowing how to schedule a visit (16%), waiting until acceptance (14%), and other reasons (14%) rounded out the top five reasons for not visiting.
- 52% of students surveyed said that a college’s brand or name recognition was somewhat important in influencing their interest. 35% said they don’t really think about it or it’s not important. Only 4% said a college’s brand or name recognition was not at all important in influencing their interest.
- As with the Class of 2022, diversity was the top thing that students want in a campus community. A diverse student body was appealing to 42% of respondents and an additional 37% said that it was a must-have in their college experience. Diversity among faculty and staff was appealing to 45% and an additional 31% identified it as a must-have community feature.
- 97% reported that they had fears about the college search process. The most common fears were not being able to afford the college that they want (37%), making the wrong decision (24%), and not being accepted to a college (16%). This marks the third year in a row that more than 92% of students reported having fears during their college search.
- While email remains the preferred method of communication for most students, receiving personalized mail (i.e. letters) from colleges and universities continues to positively influence the majority of high school seniors and juniors when it comes to considering a school that they hadn’t previously heard of.
You can also check out the webinar recording with me and Will Patch (Niche). We discuss five key results, and then answer a bunch of audience questions.