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As another application cycle begins, we’ve updated our must-read list of international recruitment resources.
2022 has been a year of rebirth for those of us who work in international student recruitment.
It’s the first year that higher education leaders and professionals have been able to comfortably meet in person. Borders and international campuses worldwide have fully reopened. At every conference or event we’ve attended, the mood has been one of cautious optimism.
At the same time, 2022 has thrown up new challenges. The ongoing war in Ukraine, coupled with the threat of rising inflation and pressures on the cost of living have brought new uncertainty for institutions and students alike.
But there are a few certainties we can bet on as another application cycle begins.
The hybrid model is here to stay. Not only will international recruiters and admissions reps continue to use a mix of digital and in-person recruitment methods, but international students will themselves evaluate the suitability of a potential higher education institution based, at least in part, on the quality of their digital engagement.
So how can your institution prepare itself for recruitment and enrolment success in 2022/23? To help you get started, we’re sharing our 20 definitive international recruitment resources for 2022/23.
For ease of navigation, we’ve divided the resources into three groups –
- Strategic resources for planning your international recruitment strategy.
- Hints and tips for optimising your outreach to prospective students and schools
- Insights from our international school community to ensure you’re addressing any questions or concerns students may have throughout the application process.
Scroll down to access your 20 essential resources…
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Step 1: Planning Your International Recruitment Strategy
1. The Essential International School Strategy Guide 2022
Why is an international school strategy so important? And how should it feed into your institution’s wider international enrolment strategy?
Our Essential International School Strategy guide is designed to give admissions teams the tools they need to understand, and recruit from an international schools market that is growing all the time.
We examined how this market has changed since the beginning of the 21st century and we explained why a more in-depth understanding of the unique context, curriculum and culture of international schools is crucial to a successful international recruitment strategy.
Click here to download your free copy of the book.
2. Curriculum, Culture & Context: The 3 ‘C’s of a Successful International School Strategy
In this blog post, we explored why the curriculum, culture and context of an international school (or international school market) can and should guide your recruitment, marketing and enrolment efforts.
We explored how the international schools market is evolving, and the different contextual factors that mean your recruitment strategy may need to change from region to region.
You can read the entirety of our blog post here.
3. Why An International School Strategy Is Essential For Universities’ Enrolment
You might have heard us use the phrase ‘international school strategy’? But what, exactly, does that mean? What are the three pillars of a successful international school strategy? And how should it sit alongside your other enrolment management initiatives?
Revisit our post from earlier this year, where we answered all of these questions (and more!).
4. The State of US International Applications 2023
While this report focuses mostly on the applications of international students in the 2022/23 academic cycle, there’s still some essential market intelligence here for admissions reps working in US institutions.
Not only can you identify the emerging US international enrolment markets in 2023 and beyond, but the report also contains must-read insights and analysis on the factors influencing students’ US application preferences in various countries around the world.
This report remains essential reading for US international admissions teams as they prepare for the fall 2023 application cycle.
5. How UK Universities Can Compete Internationally in 2023 & Beyond
Like our US report, this is essential reading for any UK international admissions team who want to learn more about what’s governing international students’ UK university preferences in the next application cycle.
This report also contains interviews with international school counsellors from across 138 countries.
6. Why Understanding International School Counsellors Can Drive Smarter Recruitment
When you’re looking to identify the prospective students who will be a great fit for your university, it can be tempting to focus solely on the students themselves.
But in many international schools, the guidance counsellor is a key player in the students’ decision making, and will often need to be your first point of contact when you’re reaching out to prospective international applicants.
So in this article, we examined the role of the guidance counsellor in more detail. We explored how and why a counsellor’s role can look different from school to school. And we shared some top tips to ensure that your initial outreach to an international school is tailored to the specific needs and objectives of the counsellor.
7. The International School Recruitment Planner
They’re impressive-sounding words that we use a lot. But sometimes, with all of the day-to-day challenges that our jobs throw at us, they can be just that. Words.
When we spoke to some of our university partners, they told us that one of the key challenges they faced was finding time to truly reflect on, and reevaluate the strengths and weaknesses in their existing territory plans and recruitment strategies.
We listened – and decided to create a simple, 4-step template to help international admissions teams more clearly define their recruitment objectives – and identify emerging opportunities in crucial markets.
If you haven’t downloaded it yet, you can do so here.
Step 2: Implementing Your International Recruitment Strategy
As well as resources to help you lay the foundations for a successful international student recruitment strategy in 2022, we’ve also provided more tactical resources to help international admissions and recruitment teams.
Whether it’s perfecting your email outreach or just tips and tricks to optimise the virtual events you run for prospective students in a selected region, we’ve got a range of ebooks, templates and blog posts to help you.
Let’s dive in…
8. The 5 Mistakes That Universities Make When Building Relationships With International Schools (& How to Avoid Them)
If you read our other resources for this year, you’ll know we’re keen advocates of building high-quality relationships with international school counsellors
But we noticed that, often, many university reps design outreach that is too generalised. They fail to tailor their outreach to the unique context of a counsellor’s job.
The result? Emails aren’t opened. Rep visit requests go unnoticed. The chance to build long-lasting relationships with counsellors and students is lost.
That’s why we created a new eBook that explains the 5 mistakes to avoid when speaking to international schools. It’s an essential resource if you want to create a tailored, personalised outreach strategy that aligns with the needs of counsellors and students alike.
9. 10 Simple Email Templates to Help You Create More Successful International School Outreach
Adapted from real-life examples used by our partner universities to successfully reach out to BridgeU schools, these 10 free templates will help you create high quality, personalised outreach that international school counsellors value.
We’ve written ten bespoke templates, designed to help you effectively reach out to international schools, tailor your content and messaging to relevant students, and ensure you’re building a long-term, fruitful collaboration with international school students after the visit is over.
10. The 7 Secrets of Writing Successful Outreach Emails to International Schools [With Examples]
A useful companion piece to our ‘10 Templates’ resource, we share exclusive insights from the BridgeU team that will help your admissions reps to build and maintain rich, long-lasting partnerships with international school counsellors and, by extension, their students.
Read the blog post here.
11. How To Better Align Your Enrolment Strategy With International Students’ Decision-Making 2022/23
Wherever you are in the world and whatever higher education institution you happen to be working in, we’re willing to bet that your immediate enrolment targets are foremost on your mind – or, at least, very much on the mind of your colleagues and team-mates!
But as you seek to convert potential international undergraduate applicants into actual applicants, it’s important to remember some of the unique challenges that international school students face as they shortlist and apply to their favoured institutions.
In this article, we share some tips on how to ensure your recruitment goals align with (or more importantly don’t clash with) international students’ application journey.
12. How to Design Compelling University Presentations That Engage & Convert International Students
It can often be easy to forget that international students will often have their own very unique questions and needs throughout their higher education discovery and application process.
It’s also important to stress that international students’ needs are also very different from those of domestic applicants.
So that’s why it’s essential to ensure that international students have access to specific information and resources at every step of the journey – from the moment they first come into contact with your institution’s brand, to the moment they choose to enrol.
This library of free templates is designed to ensure that you can easily design webinars and events that align with your international applicants’ needs, and easily answer their most frequently asked questions.
Download your free templates here.
13. The 3 Questions You Need to Ask Before Planning An Event For International Students
Now more than ever, running a successful event for your international student applicants can be an invaluable tool in persuading them to enrol at your institution.
We know that personalising your events to an audience as diverse and complex as international students can be easier said than done!
To help you quickly and easily adapt your content for your chosen events, we’ve identified three key questions every admissions team or recruitment rep needs to ask themselves.
14. Why The Majority of International Schools Prefer Hybrid Recruitment & How Universities Should Respond
Across the sector of international higher education, much of the debate has centred on the question of whether universities will return to predominantly in-person recruitment, or whether digital recruitment will remain a cornerstone of international admissions.
When we surveyed a sample of our international school counsellors across 138 countries, 67% told us that they wanted universities to maintain a hybrid approach to international student recruitment.
This blog post is essential reading for international admissions reps looking to successfully adapt and build their hybrid recruitment strategy.
Read our international schools’ insights here.
15. How US Universities Can Optimise Their International Student Enrolment For 2022 [In 9 Easy Steps]
In 2021, our data told us that the USA will continue to be a popular destination for international school students, despite a year on year decrease in applications compared to 2020.
So how can higher ed institutions across the USA best optimise their international enrolment efforts as 2022 dawns?
Drawing on insights from one of our partner institutions in the USA, Pace University, we lay out a nine-point plan to ensure success in the coming 12 months.
Read our nine-point plan for US institutions in 2022 here.
16. Why You Need to Engage With International Students Much Earlier In Their University Exploration Journey [& How To Get Started]
It’s understandable that, as the New Year begins, your primary focus will be on converting those best-fit international applicants who applied in 2022/23.
But, now more than ever, successful international enrolment means taking the long view and engaging with international students much earlier in their time at secondary school.
So in this blog post, we explored the common milestones in an international school student’s university and careers guidance curriculum, and we explained why understanding an international school student’s university discovery journey can help you to engage with best-fit students much earlier.
Learn more about the typical international school guidance curriculum (and your place in it) here.
Step 3: Optimising Your Admissions Process for International Students
In any application cycle, international students will face a number of obstacles and barriers during the course of the application process.
So it’s never been more crucial to listen to the key concerns and questions that international school students, teachers and counsellors will often raise during the course of the application process.
This final set of resources is designed to help you anticipate some of the most frequently asked questions and common obstacles that international students face when they’re both evaluating, and applying to your institution.
17. The 13 Most Common Questions That International Student Applicants Ask UK Universities [& How To Answer Them]
For many BridgeU international students, the UK remains a popular study destination. During the course of the numerous events we’ve run for our students in collaboration with UK partners, we’ve noticed a number of the same questions come up again and again.
We’ve compiled the thirteen most common questions, and you can read them here.
18. 3 Factors Governing International Students’ UK University Decision-Making in 2022
The UK is still a popular enough destination with international students that it frequently makes the top of their list when submitting their applications.
But, increasingly, the UK is now facing greater competition from other destination countries that are also investing heavily in their international recruitment strategies.
So what are the three key factors that will ultimately govern whether an international student chooses a UK university or not?
Find out in this blog post.
19. What Are International School Counsellors’ Views on the US Application Process?
With so much commentary written about the current US international student application trends (including our own recent report), we thought we’d ask some experts – international school counsellors.
We’ve interviewed BridgeU international school counsellors from across our community of schools spanning 138 countries. They shared with us why their students are applying to the USA but also, in some cases, why they’re not.
They explained why the US higher education system is still such a draw for their students, and shared some of the most common obstacles their students might face during the US application process.
This blog post is essential reading for any US international admissions team looking to understand what’s driving international students’ decision-making in 2022/23.
20. How Can US Universities Better Position Themselves to International Students?
You’ve heard counsellors’ views on the US application process. But what about international students themselves?
As part of a dedicated podcast series to accompany our US applications report, we sat down with BridgeU writer Abigail Larner and asked her for her perceptions of the US admissions process as a former international student.
Abi’s insights are essential listening for any US international admissions team who are looking to better position their institution to prospective applicants in 2022/23.
Abi discusses some of the more social and emotional considerations that can underpin international school students’ decision-making, (and which are often as important as academic factors), but can sometimes be overlooked by higher ed institutions).
Listen to the podcast here.
Get in touch
Learn how BridgeU can help you align your enrolment strategy with your international student audience.