Cara Skikne

Strong correlation between Studyportals pageviews and US enrolments


Currently, online searches play a significant role in our decision-making process. For example, search engines determine what shows to watch, what books to read, and which restaurants to visit. Increasingly, high school graduates are informing their choice of study based on online searches. A Google and Compete study from 2012 found that nine in ten students have used the internet to research higher education institutions.

Studyportals websites saw over 52 million prospective students in 2021. At the same time, we know that, currently, there are only about 5 million enrolled international students globally. What is the correlation between students browsing digitally for study degrees and the actual enrolment rates? 

The United States does not have a centralized source for higher education enrolment data. However, each state has a HE-related department that reports enrollment figures. This research report calculates the correlation between page views and enrollments for five states. These include New York, Ohio, Texas, Pennsylvania, and Massachusetts. These states have some of the largest student populations. 

In short, the results demonstrate a strong correlation between US enrolment data and page views on the Studyportals site. More specifically, the correlation in Ohio can be interpreted as “very strong,” while the correlations in New York, Texas, Pennsylvania, and Massachusetts are “strong.” These results are relevant for HE administrators because they can leverage page view data to estimate the demand for every HE program worldwide. Moreover, since the correlation is high for these five key markets, Studyportals page view data is likely representative of other markets in the United States.  



We’ve established a strong correlation between Studyportals data and enrolments 12-24 months into the future, time and time again. This is not an arbitrary timeframe – it is the average length of the student journey across our platforms.

Many enrolment datasets provide a backward-looking perspective on higher education demand. They do not reveal future trends in higher education. Because student behavior on Studyportals is forward-looking, this can give us insights into what the future holds.

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