The Journey

Use cases

How KdG measured student services and satisfaction by mapping their student journey

FOCUS AREA

The student journey, international programmes

TYPE OF INSTITUTION

University

TARGETED STUDENTS

+250

official website

5

Journey steps covered

+4,700

Student inputs provided

+50%

Student participation

The Motivation

To understand the differences between student expectations and student experience, to identify gaps and opportunities, and to understand differences in needs of international vs. local students.

The Solution

Scheduled micro surveys (pulses), to map the student journey throughout the entire semester.

...we wanted to zoom out to consider and understand the entire student journey...

Context

KdG University of Applied Sciences and Arts has been running a large 3 year project to improve student services and satisfaction for all international programmes at the institution.

In the final year of the project, StudentPulse has been used to track whether efforts have yielded the desired results, and to identify gaps and opportunities to tackle in the future.

The Challenge

The main challenge for KdG was to track whether the 3 year project had yielded the desired results as well as identifying gaps and opportunities to tackle in the future. Specifically the following challenges were identified:

  1. Understand the differences between student expectations and student experience.
  2. Track student engagement and confidence during the whole semester.
  3. Understand the differences in needs between local and international students.

The Solution

To understand students' experience with KdG and the international programmes, the educational timeline and most important focus areas were identified together with KdG's departments of International Marketing & Recruitment and International Student Services.

“We chose StudentPulse because we wanted to zoom out to consider and understand the entire student journey - not just the quality of teaching and similar programme focused aspects.

Their solution and microsurveys made this whole process much faster, agile and uniform than each programme doing it separately.”

Kris Achten

Project Manager for International Degree Programmes, KdG

An integrated approach to increase student survey engagement

Based on an educational timeline the most important points of contact with students were highlighted together with the communication tool used in each touch point. By using these existing points of contacts, students were reached out to in a natural way and at the right time, increasing students' likelihood to engage in surveys.

  • Before starting the semester, all students attending a pre-boarding webinar provided immediate feedback, supplemented by distribution to all student emails.
  • During the semester, KdG’s Student Services distributed the pulses by email, which were supplemented by in-teaching notifications (pulse 3 and 4 below).

Five micro surveys used to map KdG’s student journey

To cover the whole student journey five micro surveys were scheduled from August to January:

1. Pre-boarding experience

Two weeks before the students started, they were asked about their pre-boarding experience and expectations of the institution and programme.

2. First month expectations and confidence

After the first three days, students were asked about their experience with the intro days, their expectations for the first month and their confidence.

3. Socialising, student services and meeting expectations

After 8 weeks of studying, students were asked about their experience with socialising, student services, teaching and whether their expectations had been met.

4. Engagement and confidence

After 14 weeks, changes over time were uncovered. Highlighting expectations (not) matched and general engagement and confidence.

5. Suggestions and Improvements

After the semester, students were asked to look back at their experience, suggesting their improvements and giving their inputs in the context of future student recruitment.

The results

Student Differences

KdG got an in-depth understanding of the differences between local and international students' experience by having it all mapped out and explained in detail in each step.

Engagement & Confidence

Throughout the semester, KdG got ongoing data and understanding of student engagement and their confidence, making it possible to act up on potential issues along the way.

Expectations vs. Reality

Student feedback uncovered differences between student expectations in one step and actual student experience in the next step.

Best Practices

KdG identified best practices of student preboarding, onboarding and engagement across different programmes.

Feedback overview

Preboarding experience The score includes preboarding communication and expectations matching.

8.9 /10

Benchmark: 8.1

Onboarding experience The score is based on the students experience with the first three days at the university.

8.5 /10

Benchmark: 8.2

Avg. student confidence The score is based on the students confidence thinking about their upcoming month.

8.1 /10

Benchmark: 7.4

Programmes covered

11

Total questions included

40