- THELMAs Award Winners Round-Up
- IDP Joins Exporting Education UK
- East meets West: Visit to the UK by IDP Regional Director
- What in the World?!
- Keep in the Loop with our Stakeholder Engagement work
- How was it for you? Top tips on getting better ROI from your agent conferences
- Update from the network: New IDP offices in the Philippines, India and Vietnam
- AIEC Now Open for Registration!
- IDP opens first IELTS test centres in Japan
- Reminder: IDP has opened an office in Iran
- Promotional opportunity for China
We were delighted to see so many of you at the recent Times Higher Education Leadership and Management Awards (THELMAs) which took place on 23rd June at Grosvenor House in London.
Once again IDP sponsored the Outstanding International Strategy category, highlighting institutions that have shown a real dedication to internationalisation through innovative recruitment strategies, focusing on student satisfaction and an understanding of the importance of international higher education.
The winner of this category was De Montfort University, with the judges being particularly impressed with their #DMUglobal initiative, which is aimed at increasing student mobility and recruitment through helping students to identify as ‘global graduates’.
The judging team said that De Montfort University showed “a really strong commitment from the university to provide students from a broad range of backgrounds access to a range of meaningful and life-changing experiences as part of its outward mobility strategy”.
Congratulations should also be given to all those nominated for awards this year, and to the following winners in their respective categories:
- Swansea University – Outstanding Leadership and Management Team
- University of Nottingham – Outstanding Development / Alumni Relations Team
- University of Bradford – Outstanding Student Services Team
- University of Strathclyde – Outstanding Administrative Services Team
- University of Kent – Outstanding Departmental Administration Team
- University of Glasgow – Outstanding Strategic Planning Team
To see the full list of winners, including judges’ comments and information about the winning projects, you can visit the THELMAs website here.
Next year’s THELMAs are due to be held on 22nd June 2017 at the Grosvenor House Hotel, Park Lane, London. We hope to see you there.
IDP Education (UK) Ltd is proud to be a member of ExEdUK as part of our ongoing commitment to supporting international education in the UK and representing the interests of our university partners to key stakeholders.
A new report from Exporting Education UK (ExEdUK) and Parthenon-EY estimates that the decline in international students arriving here since 2011/12 has already cost the UK £1.1 billion, with a further £8 billion in opportunity cost forecast by 2016/17.
The report, which provides the first comprehensive account of the impact of the UK’s student visa policies on the international education sector, offers seven recommendations to government to reverse the decline and secure the significant economic contribution which international students bring to the UK – including supporting over 200,000 local jobs.
ExEdUK also provides secretarial support to the newly launched All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for International Students. The overarching purpose of the APPG is to promote the value of international students to UK education, economy and ‘soft power’.
In May we were delighted to welcome Allen Jiang, IDP Regional Director North Asia and Member of the Global Leadership Team, on an inward mission to meet with the UK IDP team and to visit clients and stakeholders.
In addition to IDP operational developments within China, Taiwan and Hong Kong, Allen shared a number of observations, opportunities and updates in relation to the overall economic and demographic conditions for these markets.
Some of the key takeaways:
- IDP is investing in more dedicated UK staff resources for Hong Kong and Taiwan that will allow us to further support our clients in these markets.
- In China we are exploring a new online, virtual counselling and application platform. This will be in addition to our traditional physical events and face-to-face counselling and is designed to complement existing activity as students increasingly go online for information when researching university choices and so digital is a key touch point. We will share further details on this with clients in the near future.
- The Chinese economy remains robust as the Government takes proactive steps to counteract the effects of economic slowdown.
- Despite demographic challenges, demand for overseas education in Hong Kong is strong among many families as the political relationship with Mainland China becomes even more fraught. Currency exchange fluctuations can also play a part in making overseas study more affordable and attractive.
- After a dramatic fall in enrolments to the UK from Taiwan between 2006-2009, the market has remained largely stable in recent years and interest in undergraduate study, although relatively small, has also been steady.
We are very grateful to the clients that hosted Allen for their time and hospitality. It was his first visit to the UK and he left with an incredibly positive impression. Thank you all.
During his time in Cardiff Allen delivered a market update briefing to several of our Welsh clients. This was coordinated in partnership with British Council Wales and Universities Wales under the Welsh Government’s “Global Wales” initiative.
IDP is keen to do more to support other UK regional initiatives such as this. If you have any suggestions then please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
A lot has happened in the world of international HE policy since our Spring Client Update. We thought it would be helpful to recap on the latest developments both in the UK and other English-Language speaking study destinations:
Australia announced a long-term growth strategy with an alumni focus
In April the Australian Government released the National Strategy for International Education 2025
It sets out a 10-year plan for developing Australia’s role as a global leader in education, training and research.
The Australian Government will provide $12 million over four years from 2016–17 to support implementation. The National Strategy is part of a suite of Australian Government initiatives to support international education, including:
- Austrade’s long-term market development roadmap – Australian International Education 2025
- Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade’s Australia Global Alumni Strategy
- Department of Immigration and Border Protection’s simplified student visa framework
Canada continues to say (and do) all the right things
Whilst the UK Government fixates on Brexit and indulges in sporadic largely negative public discourse around whether or not international students should be included in net migration figures, Canada has continued to operate firmly at the other end of the spectrum. Recently the Canadian Immigration Minister went on record as saying that “We must do more to attract students to this country as permanent residents . . . International students have been shortchanged by the express entry system. They are the cream of the crop, in terms of potential future Canadians.”
This came as part of a wider announcement that the Government is looking to reform the existing Express Entry system to make it easier for international graduates to remain in Canada.
The EU moves on PSW
For some time, organisations such as DAAD, Nuffic and Campus France have worked to promote their respective countries in overseas markets. The German Government has in recent years pledged to increase international student enrolments by 25% and the French introduced a Talent Passport scheme to attract and retain the best and the brightest international graduates. Student flows to Continental Europe from overseas markets has grown apace as more and more academic provision is now delivered in English. This has now been taken a stage further with the recent announcement that the European Parliament has approved amendments to the EU’s Visa Directive in order to make study and research more attractive for non-EU students. This essentially will give students more time after they have finished their studies to look for employment or set up a business.
Warning: For those that are already suffering from chronic EU referendum debate fatigue you may wish to scroll down to the next article. Attention has now been turned onto the potential impact of Brexit on international student flows to the UK. A Hobsons survey of prospective students found that a significant proportion of EU respondents and just over a third of non-EU would consider the UK to be a far less attractive study destination should the UK vote to leave the EU. This echoes research from the Institute for Social and Economic Research (ISER) into the impact on the UK workforce as many EU graduates perform strongly in terms of academic attainments and provide a talent pipeline that could be jeopardised in the event of Brexit.
A positive step from the UK
It is not however necessarily all doom and gloom. In May it was announced that a new All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for International Student has been launched in order to lobby the Government for reform of immigration policy, as it is felt to be eroding the UK’s market share. The APPG is co-chaired by cross-bench peer Lord Bilimoria and Sheffield Labour MP Paul Blomfield. Further details on membership and scope of the Group can be found on the Exporting Education UK website.
HE White Paper: what does this mean for English Universities and the rest of the UK?
In what was becoming an already extremely busy month, the Department for Business, Innovation & Skills (BIS) launched a new White Paper “Higher education: success as a knowledge economy”, setting out the Government's plans to reform the system for HE provision and research in England.
- Linking UK/EU fee levels to teaching quality and meeting student expectations; this is part of the wider (and controversial) Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF) which is to be phased in gradually. The TEF will see the government monitoring and assessing the quality of teaching in England’s universities, in a similar way to which it has periodically assessed research quality. Under the White Paper, the Government is looking to build a link between a university’s performance in the TEF and the tuition fees they are able to charge. The White Paper proposes that there will be a formal assessment of university performance on measures such as student satisfaction and graduate employment, leading to a series of differentiated fee caps, this is not likely to come into effect until 2019. This means that high performing institutions may be able to increase their fees but also those that did not perform against criteria may have to lower their fees.
-Relaxation of rules to allow “start-up” universities; new higher education providers should be allowed to award their own degrees and charge £9,000 tuition fees from the day that they open, the higher education White Paper proposes. Alternative providers currently have to offer degrees validated by a partner institution for five years before they can apply for their own degree-awarding powers, with the application process taking up to two years, but the government proposes to radically speed up this process in a bid to increase competition and widen participation. The White Paper says that new providers should be able to apply for degree-awarding powers from day one of their operation, under a three-year probationary arrangement that would see them subjected to ongoing monitoring and annual reviews.
Trump poised to become Republican nominee
What once seemed like a far-fetched fantasy is now even closer to becoming a reality, as Donald Trump appears poised to be named the Republican Party’s nominee for the US Presidential Election in November 2016. In the event that he does enter the Oval Office, his rhetoric on immigrants and Muslims, already off-putting to many both within and outside of the US, could in future directly impact on international student decision making. Given his tough immigration stance he may even look to reverse some of the gains the US has made under the current administration by tampering with existing OPT rules (US equivalent of Post-Study-Work).
The IDP UK team have continued to work to support key stakeholders across the HE sector on a number of collaborative projects in order to strengthen the UK’s international position and add further value for our clients.
This includes attending events and sharing market insights as part of wider policy dialogues and lobbying initiatives. In addition to our membership of the on-going National Brand and Digital Platform Task and Finish Group, we are also in the process of exploring how we might contribute to the Education is GREAT Campaign and the recently launched All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for International Students.
We were delighted to see a number of our clients at the recent networking evening that was hosted in London by the PIE News and WonkHe, bringing together over 100 HE sector influencers and policy makers.
IDP staff have been at NAFSA 2016 in Denver, and delivered two sessions on the future of international student recruitment and managing effective relationships with agents. The slides will be accessible via the Hub shortly. Keep checking the Conference Presentations section regularly for this and other updates. We have also posted photos and news from NAFSA on our Twitter feed.
In June we will be sponsoring and attending the International Unit conference in London, “Enhancing the International Student Experience”. We look forward to seeing you there.
And in July, we are delighted to sponsor and present at the BUILA Annual Conference in Liverpool. We will be delivering a session on the Middle East and India using our student buying behavior research and discussing the latest trends in social media and online usage. No doubt we will see many of you there.
We will continue to keep you updated on our work in this area. If you have any questions then please contact email@example.com
An excellent way of communicating the USPs of your institution to your agent network and building knowledge and awareness is through training conferences. But what should you do to get the most out of your conference? We know that they take up a significant amount of time, effort and investment. Here are some thoughts based on our experiences at IDP:
- It is important to give as much notice as possible in advance of the conference. That way we can work to ensure that the most appropriate person is available to attend the conference and make the experience more beneficial for you. Notice for an agents conference should be reasonable. 6 months is preferable. Less than 3 months can be challenging.
- Sometimes it is better to combine an agents conference with another institution if possible. This is attractive to agents as it means that they can attend more than one university’s conference in one trip, reducing costs and maximising time spent away from the office and their core work of supporting students. Are there other institutions in your city / nearby region that you can build rapport with and work collaboratively to coordinate your conference or at the very least avoid a direct clash.
- Encourage interaction and creative workshop activities – this way you will be able to measure the success of your conference by looking back on how well something discussed has been implemented in the market. This also makes it more likely that the attendees will be more comfortable and encouraged to share their market insights. Shorter, snappier more informal “speed dating” type sessions or a mock Open Day where different academic schools and professional services have a stand and agents can move freely between them to ask questions can be a good alternative to just traditional presentations.
- Quality over Quantity; do not try and cover everything rather pick out key areas of focus and stick to them; it can be hard to try and please everyone as all academic schools may want to be involved but we would recommend trying to rationalize. If is very difficult for an individual to remember everything about every faculty presented to him or her in a 3-day period, particularly if it’s their first time in the UK. English may not be their first language and of course the jetlag effect. Allowing some downtime for attendees to digest what they have learned, walk around the campus / city, meet with some of their students informally and chat to each other can be effective. Don’t feel you need to fill up every minute of time for attendees with planned activities.
- Try and encourage colleagues to draw out genuine USPs and points of competitive differentiation; ask them the question - why should a student select their programme over another? You need those attending the conference to leave you with a clear idea as to why and how you are different to your competitors across target subject areas. This could be based on faculty, facilities, placement opportunities, industry links, accreditation, teaching methods, course content etc.
- Involve current international students – they can be your best advocates and often provide the most memorable and authentic content of conferences.
- Staff – invite your most dynamic and passionate colleagues – individuals who show the institution in the best light, allow time to train and brief them. We appreciate that this can be difficult but the best sessions are when academics are able to make their presentations fun, memorable, interactive and thought provoking. Also ensure that they tailor their content to the audience and market type; can the member of staff talk or be prepared to talk authoritatively about undergraduate and postgraduate provision for their school?
- Follow up collateral and content – videos are great, soft copies of presentation slides and brochures are preferable to lots of hard copy material.
- And in relation specifically to IDP, keep your client relationship manager informed about your conference. We can help to coordinate with our Network colleagues to bring staff from the countries/regions you wish.
In June 2016, IDP’s Manila office will be relocating. Our bigger and better space can now accommodate more in-house activities to fully prepare our students leaving for their chosen study destination, allow clients to conduct more counselling sessions, and provide an area for IELTS candidates.
We opened our new office in the city of Thane, on 4th May 2016. The Thane office is IDP’s third in the very large Greater Mumbai Metropolitan Region, in addition to the established offices in South & West Mumbai.
Also in India, we opened a new office in the city of Surat on 19th May 2016. This is IDP’s 21st student placement office in India and means we now have a presence in 20 cities.
The Surat office is IDP’s third in the State of Gujarat, the others being Ahemdabad and Vadodara.
We are also pleased to announce that IDP has opened its second office in Hanoi.
For more information on these and all our offices worldwide please visit this link.
The AIEC (Australian International Education Conference) will be celebrating its 30th anniversary this year. With around 1,200 delegates representing over 400 organisations from 38 countries, it is the largest international education conference in the Asia-Pacific region. The event is jointly presented by IDP Education and the International Education Association of Australia (IEAA) and is designed for international education practitioners and policy makers. We are delighted to announce that this year from the UK, Vivienne Stern, Director of the Universities UK HE International Unit, will be speaking at AIEC. All staff from IDP clients are eligible for an additional discount on the conference attendance fee, this is on top of the Early Bird rate. For more information and to book your place please visit www.aiec.idp.com
We are pleased to announce the opening of our first IELTS test centre in Tokyo that took place on the 25th May. This latest exciting development is in response to the increased demand being witnessed in Japan for IELTS for academic, professional and migration purposes. IELTS tests will initially be available on a fortnightly basis in Tokyo, with further new IDP test centres to be opened in Kobe and Yokohama respectively in September and Osaka in October.
IELTS is jointly owned by IDP, the British Council, and Cambridge English Language Assessment. Each year more than 2.7 million IELTS tests are taken globally and IDP now has over 400 test locations across the world.
We are pleased to inform you that IDP has opened a student counselling office in Tehran. This exciting development builds on the well established network of IELTS testing centres that we already have in the country.
Through our regional structure the Iran office falls under the Middle East and our experienced staff there will be supporting colleagues in Tehran as they begin to promote our UK clients.
Are you interested in promoting your institution to more Chinese students? If so, then you may want to advertise in the 2016/17 Insider Guides - International Student Guide to the UK. The guide, which is in Simplified Chinese, will introduce prospective Chinese students to the culture, places and people in the UK through engaging student-written content, infographics, illustrations and photography. Insider Guides has been making guides for the Australian market for 7 years, and many of the major Australian universities are clients. 2016 is the first year Insider Guides will be published for the UK. For more information contact James Martin, Managing Director firstname.lastname@example.org