As strategic enrollment management (SEM) has evolved, researchers and practitioners have emphasized the need for a data-rich environment that enables the study of how institutional policies and practices impact student enrollment. While some have suggested potential research topics that would help guide SEM, “a systematic study of the research needs of enrollment managers and their relative importance has not been undertaken,” writes John Braxon, Don Hossler, and Alexandra Wendt in a recent SEMQ article.
In “Delineating A Practitioner-Defined Research Agenda for Enrollment Management,” the authors describe their effort to develop a two-way practitioner-to-researcher loop of scholarship. They collaborated with AACRAO Research to survey association members about the day-to-day issues and concerns they encounter in their practice of enrollment management. Responses were analyzed and categorized into 46 research areas that define a practitioner-defined research agenda for enrollment management—from the efficacy of various retention strategies and SEM planning, to the cost of higher education and diversity.
“By identifying topics that enrollment management professionals would like researched, the practitioner-defined research agenda provides insights for researchers to conduct research that would garner the interests of the enrollment management professionals,” the authors wrote. “In addition, the practitioner-defined research agenda helps enrollment management professionals better understand their field of practice, as the topics of this agenda can reveal new trends in strategic enrollment management.”
They added: “Simply identifying new topics can help busy professionals stay abreast of current concerns in SEM. These trends can shed light on the topics where there is consensus regarding the most important areas for further research and understanding.”
Other articles featured in this issue of SEM Quarterly are:
The Coming of Age of Data Analytics in Higher Education
By Reid Kisling, Andrew Peterson, and Robert Nisbet
Exploring the Relationship between International and Racial Minority Enrollment in M.B.A. Programs at Public Universities in the United States
By Olga Komissarova
The Relationship between Institutional Budget Models and Graduate Strategic Enrollment Management Structures
By Joseph H. Paris, Matthew Brinbaum, and Nicholas Dix
AACRAO's 2021 SEM Conference is coming soon. Join other SEM professionals as they come together to learn, grow, and advance the profession of strategic enrollment management.
SEM Quarterly provides knowledge and insight into the ongoing evolution of strategic enrollment management (SEM) by bridging the gap between theory and practice. Articles by thought leaders and practitioners address the emerging dynamics of SEM, including: executive-level leadership, leading strategies, internationalization, research, academic orientation, and current trends.
For more information, or to submit a manuscript, please contact the Editor-in-Chief or the Managing Editor.