Pre-arrival surveys make it possible to meet students where they are

The impact of pre-arrival surveys in higher education

As a survey and insights solution provider to more than 60 universities across the UK and Ireland, evasys surveys are used for a diverse range of survey types, from module evaluation through staff surveys to institution-level surveys.

evasys is being used with increasing frequency to carry out pre-arrival surveys with students about to embark upon their university journey. What has instigated this upward trend? A growing awareness within the HE sector that understanding more about the new student cohort in advance of their arrival provides the opportunity to implement any changes necessary to give them the best chance of success during their university experience – and provides the ability to engage with UF applicants as individuals and respond to their specific expectations and concerns, thus increasing their likelihood of arriving, staying and succeeding.

Bruce Johnson, Managing Director at evasys, confirmed: “The use of pre-arrival surveys by some of our customers has reaped significant benefits. Beyond the university-level insights that are produced, the ability to summarise the collective view and close the feedback loop appears to substantially aid students’ transition into university. Responding at an individual level to specific issues raised is hugely powerful, not least in ensuring that the student arrives, stays and succeeds. Logically, it should then result in increased propensity to respond to further student surveys.”

Bruce Johnson, evasys

In a recent blog from Wonkhe, ‘Pre-arrival surveys make it possible to meet students where they are’, Associate Editor Sunday Blake spoke to several evasys clients – and evasys MD Bruce Johnson – about the benefits and outcomes of implementing pre-arrival surveys for new students.

The article, featuring use cases and best practices from a range of senior practitioners within HE, is essential reading for any institution looking for insights and ideas that will help improve student retention and success.

Contributors and key quotes

The recent piece on pre-arrival surveys published by Wonkhe details different approaches by a range of experts, who all offered personal insights in addition to wider details of the initiatives undertaken and the results achieved.

“I realised that to impact the metrics at the end and to support retention, progression and success we had to go back to the start of the journey to understand the factors that could impact on a poor experience upon entry.”

university of east london logoDr Michelle Morgan, University of East London

“We start to develop a relationship with them in those summer months after they have finished their exams. They want to know more about Portsmouth and have some desire to become part of our community. They’re keen to do things that help them prepare for university. So we get them involved with some online resources and two online courses.”

University BuckinghamProfessor Harriet Dunbar-Morris, University of Buckingham

“We are building a model to ensure we intervene early. We use data insights to anticipate when and where challenges will come.”

University of the West of ScotlandEmily McIntosh , University of the West of Scotland

“The pre-arrival questionnaire seeks information beyond what students might assume their institutions already have from their UCAS application. We think that many students will be willing to share additional details if the institution communicates a genuine commitment to supporting their transition to university, rather than merely fulfilling a marketing requirement.”

EvaSys linkedIn ICON light greenBruce Johnson, evasys

“The pre-arrival questionnaire has completely changed how Teesside operates.”

Teesside University testimonialDr Nicola Watchman Smith , Teeside University

For all the details from these higher ed experts on the benefits of pre-arrival surveys:

And if you’d like to chat about using evasys for pre-arrival surveys, or would like to book a demo, please just get in touch.

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