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Case study: widening participation and outreach with UQ

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Widening participation and outreach is a key challenge for most universities around the world. It’s no different for the University of Queensland (UQ) in Australia. The Brisbane-based institution partnered with us to see if they could use our platform to make an impact on audiences that are traditionally tough for them to reach.

 

At-a-glance results

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19% of prospective students who engaged with UQ via TAP went on to apply.

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Using TAP allowed UQ to reach the undergraduate non-school leaver market - traditionally a tough one for them to make an impact with. 56% of their undergraduate applicants from TAP came from this market.

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UQ also saw an unprecedented interest in postgraduate applications through their use of TAP, with 106 new applicants.

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The challenge

 

Making an impact on traditionally hard-to-reach markets is something universities are always battling - and it is no different for UQ.

To help address this and give them a better understanding about how to reach those tricky audiences - particularly non-school leavers - they put faith in the power of peer recruitment and partnered with us for a three-and-a-half month trial project.

During this trial, UQ included a widget on their Program and Study pages only - intentionally keeping it off their high traffic pages, such as Medicine. These widgets gave their prospects a direct link to the profiles of the university's Ambassadors and a chat to start a private conversation, and answer all of those burning questions about life at UQ.

 

Why TAP?

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Direct conversations: Our chat feature allowed for authentic conversations between prospective students and ambassadors. These conversations helped ensure prospects could find answers to their questions and make confident decisions about their future.

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Safeguarding by design: Our ‘safeguarding by design’ approach to building our platform – with in-built checks and alerts – offered a safe space for conversation and reflected UQ’s passion for safeguarding.

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A passion for WP and outreach: We share their passion for widening participation and outreach - one of our co-founders has first-hand experience of widening participation to access higher education. Work in this area reflects our company mission and it aligned with the goals of UQ.

Results

 

During the trial period of 1 July - 12 October, 1,582 prospects engaged with UQ.

Of these, 195 currently have QTAC first preferences at UQ, while 106 postgraduate applications were also made - that means 19% of prospects who engaged with UQ via TAP went on to apply to study there.

From the 195 QTAC first preferences, 109 - 56% - of them were for non-school leavers, a market that UQ has traditionally found difficult to reach.

“What I love about TAP is its versatility both in terms of applications and the audiences it helps and has helped UQ reach. From peer to peer chats to conversations between staff and prospects, from targeted campaigns to ‘always on’ solutions, from postgraduate recruitment to outreach engagement, TAP is as simple and authentic as it is effective across a multitude of market segments and cohorts. TAP has turbo-charged our recruitment capability while elevating the student experience by facilitating open, genuine and truly transparent conversations with our ambassadors, alumni and staff.”

 

Luca Cella, Head of Future Students Australia, UQ

Impact

 

This trial has shown that non-school leavers do want to study at UQ and really value being able to enquire, start a conversation with Ambassadors and, ultimately, apply.

TAP proved to be a key channel to those students who are too time poor or live too far away to attend traditional Open Days, career expos and fairs, or who UQ meet during our school visits.

The trial also highlighted the interest in studying for a postgraduate degree with UQ - it shows real potential for even more work in the future.

 

Find out more

 

If you’d like to see how we can help you maximise your widening participation and outreach efforts, why not book a demo of our platform to see how we can help?

 

We’re also currently offering a period of three months’ free usage of all our features to give you time to get to know us and our platform better, and see what difference it can make to your recruitment efforts.

 

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