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As global macro forces affect future of international education, IQ from IDP Connect is providing education institutions with data they need. Future growth will require institutions to rely on new strategies – a broader diversity of students, new services and offshore delivery options – and on raising their status as institutions of choice for international students.

COVID-19 has completely reshaped the international education sector and Australia’s sector in particular has been devastated by ongoing border closures. With international students likely to remain scarce, institutions need to look for new ways of working and new ways to attract students. This is where IQ is proving invaluable in in giving institutions the knowledge they need to make data-driven decisions and targeted actions.

Reaching an audience of 109 million site visits across its digital platforms each year, IDP has access to the world’s largest combined dataset covering student demand. IQ taps into this dataset, alongside in-country expertise and enrolment data from more than 50,000 students.

IQ has been also designed to help institutions make informed strategic decisions based on insights into their positioning, which is increasingly important in the competitive global higher education market. Using comprehensive, unbiased data, IQ provides products from student demand trackers to bespoke competitor and market gap analysis.

David Harrison, International Director, Macquarie University in Sydney, said the scale and scope of the IQ data has been revelatory, and that the current conditions mean institutions must be looking at ways to get ahead of the curve.

“IQ data is a key part in making sure we’re really smart about what we do. International student numbers won’t return to Australia for some time yet, so in this competitive environment, we want to ensure we’ve put ourselves in the best possible position to succeed,” Mr Harrison said.

“Doing ‘deep dives’ into specific country data has been so useful for us and showed that we can make quick decisions that are data-backed, without getting on planes to get in-field insights. And validated and aggregated data only works when you’ve got scale like IDP. Working with data is a different skillset to what we were using pre-COVID and we’ve all become like data detectives, piecing the puzzle together.

“You have to embrace the undeniable forces happening right now, and proactively using data insights like IQ, or your institution is going to be left behind.”

Joanna Storti, Commercial Director IDP Connect APAC, said IQ gives institutions the insights they need to develop their international education strategies, including detailed demand data and analysis that can inform focused marketing and competitive course offerings.

“Through our student placement, we have the know-how to provide students with the right advice, and institutions with the right people. IQ now provides the foundational data for this expertise to our client institutions,” Ms Storti said.

“Our experience tells us that students often have vastly different perceptions of a destination, depending on a range of factors. This includes where they live, what they are looking for from their studies and their individual priorities.

“With many institutions looking at diversifying their target markets for students, understanding the expectation of students in different countries has become increasingly important.

“Tracking changes in student demand at a macro level has become critical for institutions – and that’s information that we can provide. For example, we’ve seen a significant increase in interest in the United States as a destination since last year’s presidential election, while Australia has declined significantly in the past year largely due to its border closures.

“In this ever-changing landscape it’s important to step back and look at the entire market to see where each institution fits – and where it wants to be. Leveraging data in this way, and understanding students’ concerns will help rebuild the international education sector after a year of extreme disruption,” she said.

About IDP Connect

IDP Connect is the strategic partner of choice for institutions seeking access to engaged student communities. As part of IDP Education, the world leader in student recruitment, IDP Connect uses its global expertise, data-driven insights and trusted human connections to match universities, schools and colleges with the right students from around the world.

Powered by the world’s most expansive omnichannel platform, we bring institutions to life, from academic offerings to campus experiences and beyond. Through our unmatched physical office network, websites, apps, and virtual counselling solutions, students from all corners of the world form our connected community, along with our expert team of trusted education advisors, and our partner institutions.

IDP Connect’s IQ services offer a helicopter view of the global higher education landscape, using the world’s largest combined data set of student demand. From initial online search, through to application, offer and enrolments, we are able to track global student demand through the full funnel and in real-time, helping institutions to address the key challenges faced by higher education.

IDP Connect IQ

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Sophie Tudor07 July 2021