10 ways to reach underrepresented students

Survey highlights the ways that underrepresented students go about their college search, as well as their communication and technology preferences.

EAB has released a survey breaking down the college search, timing and communications preferences of minority, first-generation and low-income students, while also offering tips to institutions on how to best recruit these underrepresented students.

The report, “Communication Preferences: How to reach the next generation of college-bound students,” surveyed 8,515 college-bound high school juniors and seniors from across the nation in the summer of 2015. The online survey was conducted by the Royall & Company division of EAB, and gauged a variety of topics relevant to the college search process including sources used to gather information about colleges, search timing, preferred communication channels and campus visits.

The report emphasizes that with affirmative action under fire, it is particularly important for colleges and universities to think more strategically and recognize the differences on how to best attract under-represented groups compared to their more traditional counterparts.

“We’re really looking for the best possible insights into how to help schools make the best efforts to increasingly recruit and enroll more diverse classes,” said Pam Royall, head of research at Royall & Company. “Everybody wants to create a campus that is a shape of the real world. First-generation students and ethnic groups bring critical life experience to college campuses that prospective students and their families look for.”

(Next page: An in-depth look at student preferences with demographic breakdowns)