Senior Higher Ed Leaders Highlight Top Admissions Trends

Acuity Insights recently released its 2024 Trends Report, highlighting key trends that will emerge due to the previous year’s transformative events. 

In the report, we discussed feedback from our recently conducted admissions trends survey (and much more!). We received insights from senior leaders in higher education, including:

  • Chief Admissions Officers
  • Chief Enrollment Officers
  • Vice/Associate Provosts
  • Senior/Executive/Associate Vice Presidents
  • Deans and Associate/Assistant/Director of Admissions

Most respondents were from the United States, representing central university admissions and faculties/schools.

We’ve grouped together the admissions leaders’ paraphrased responses on expected trends– read on to discover compelling insights from experts in higher ed. 

AI and Technology Integration

Respondents pointed out that integrating AI and other technological tools would significantly enhance and streamline the admissions process. Notably, respondents identified that AI would be used within the admissions process to help automate processes, as well as in the amplification of recruitment strategies. 

  • AI will help to guide targeted recruitment practices for greater effectiveness.
  • We’ll see the implementation of AI tools to automate everyday processes in the admissions and financial aid offices.
  • AI will be utilized to evaluate quantifiable portions of student applications.
  • Technology, like AI, will assist recruiting efforts, including implementing software tools and social media marketing.

Diversifying Recruitment Strategies

Respondents said that there would be a focus on broadening student outreach, encompassing non-traditional and international student demographics, and amplifying local and regional engagement initiatives.

  • Emphasis on reaching and recruiting non-traditional students.
  • Increased marketing to local high schools and community colleges.
  • Focus on regional recruitment – the area within 4-6 hours of the school.
  • Seeking out and recruiting transfer students.
  • Implementing creative international partnerships.

Marketing and Communication Enhancements

Senior leader feedback underscores the necessity for enhanced marketing approaches, advocating for optimized utilization of social media channels and direct admission initiatives to bolster visibility and entice potential applicants.

  • Better use of technology in the recruitment (and retention) of students.
  • Through marketing materials, articulate the institution and program values to prospective students.

Updating institutional policies and processes

Experts suggested that they anticipate changes in institutional policies and processes in order to facilitate fairness and accessibility.

  • No longer withholding transcripts from students for financial reasons
  • Interviews will follow a standardized style in order to support equity and fairness to all applicants.
  • Programs will remove application fees.

To further understand the upcoming admissions trends and gain insight into actionable strategies, read our 2024 Admissions Trends Report.