Budget

Simplicity Meets Science: Introducing a Smart New Approach to Enrollment Prediction

It’s been a challenging few years for higher education. Enrollment numbers took a beating as the pandemic caused many students to pause their education plans, whether to support family, fill jobs opened up by the Great Resignation, or simply wait for a return to “normalcy” before continuing their education.

Now, recession anxiety is prevailing, raising the question of which way enrollment will trend next. Will it increase, as layoffs and fewer job prospects prompt people to upskill or reskill? Or will it fall due to higher ed funding cuts and rising tuition prices?

If accurately predicting enrollment numbers in normal conditions is challenging, under the current cloud of uncertainty it’s downright mind-boggling. Yet accuracy is more critical than ever, as the effects of off-the-mark predictions flow far downstream — from revenue forecasting to capacity planning to learning disruptions.

Now for some good news: Help is here.

Meet Questica InTuition

We’re excited to introduce Questica InTuition, a new tuition and revenue modeling tool that’s specifically designed to overcome the shortcomings of current solutions by taking a more scientific approach to projecting enrollment. It’s the only solution that’s built on the proprietary budgeting model developed by the University of Delaware. Here’s why that’s significant:

The University of Delaware set out to research the best enrollment projection methods and determined that research in this area was lacking. So, they built their own model. At a high level, it works like this:  

  • It looks at historical enrollment rates. 
  • It separates the students into their unique types and statuses. 
  • From there, it develops both ‘yield rates’ (how likely is a student to join the school if they are accepted) and retention percentages (how likely is a student to continue in the Spring semester from the Fall, or from the Spring to the following Fall semester).
  • Once these numbers are crunched, it uses a tuition model to project the revenues associated with these different students, based on the school’s fee structure. 

It’s a very straightforward model that’s gaining in popularity. The difficulty with implementing it on your own is that it involves large amounts of calculations, increasing for each dimension you include. If you rely on a tool like a spreadsheet to make the model actionable, you’ll introduce more opportunity for human error and lack visibility into the underlying assumptions.  

Questica InTuition bakes the University of Delaware modeling process right into a purpose-built, configurable software solution. The result? Finance teams can quickly and accurately create tuition modeling scenarios that address multiple situations, while taking actual budget numbers into account.

How Does InTuition Work?  

Based on historical enrollment patterns, InTuition can estimate statistics, like future enrollment per semester, and budgets, like the tuition revenue that those enrollments will generate.  

 INPUTS + CALCULATIONS = OUTPUTS

Sample Inputs

  • Historical enrollment numbers, including various dimensions  
    • Type: full time vs. part time 
    • Residency status: resident, non-resident, international 
    • Student level: undergraduate, graduate, doctoral, credentialed 

Tuition fees

Sample Calculations

    • Continuation percentages – based on historical data: 
      • What is the likelihood that a fall student will continue with studies in the spring? What about spring to fall? 
      • Note that calculations like Continuation Percentage can be overridden if you don’t agree with the number produced

Sample Outputs

  • The continuation rates as calculated from historical data
  • A statistical enrollment forecast describing the anticipated student numbers.
  • A tuition revenue forecast 

Here’s How to Harness the Power of InTuition

We know enrollment is the lifeblood of your institution, and accurately predicting those numbers is critical for superior planning. So, we’re committed to getting you up and running, fast.  

 

  • InTuition is delivered via the Update Questica page. When you purchase the product, we enable the package on your account, and you can install it on demand. No major upgrades are required to access the new functionality – it’s compatible with any Questica Budget installation of version 2020.2.0.0 or higher.
  • You’ll work with a Questica implementation expert to get trained on the model. They’ll also make sure it’s fully adjusted to your preferences. 
  • Since InTuition is delivered as a set of ACE Calculation Templates, you get a highly configurable system. Formulas and functions can be modified to suit your unique requirements. 
  • Once we’ve configured the model to your specifications, along with various statistical inputs (like importing historical enrollment numbers), your team will be ready to start forecasting using the Tuition model. 

The better your modeling, the more agile your institution can be when it comes to navigating inevitable shifts in the student enrollment landscape. Chat with your Questica account manager today to discover how to fuel your success using the power of InTuition. 

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DOWNLOAD OUR LATEST EBOOK.

Learn how to find the right solutions partner to enhance your ERP, save time and resources, and ultimately deliver a greater impact on the communities you serve.

Download eBook