Social influence and student choice of higher education institution


  • Joanna Krezel Victoria University, College of Business
  • Z. Adam Krezel Faculty of Science, Engineering and Built Environment, Deakin University, 1 Gheringhap Street, Geelong


social influence, higher education, student-as-customer, choice models,


This conceptual paper discusses changes in higher education sector, growing competition as a result of new private education providers and the adoption of student-as-customer perspective in recruitment and marketing of higher education institutions. The paper reviews numerous models of student choice and identifies inconsistencies in the role of social factors in the student choice. These inconsistencies are of special importance in current higher education landscape and growing prominence of peer-to-peer communication via social media. Consequently, a thorough understanding of influences that effect student choice of higher education institution is imperative. This conceptual paper puts forward a conceptual framework that integrates Kelman’s processes of social influence and Cialdini-Goldstein’s  goals that underpin the acceptance of that influence to examine the effects social context has on student choice of higher education institution.


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Author Biographies

  • Joanna Krezel, Victoria University, College of Business

    Joanna has 20 years-experience working in a range of marketing roles in the arts industry in Melbourne, Australia, including the role of Marketing and Audience Development Manager at the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra

    She holds Master of Business Administration (MBA) and Master of Business (Marketing) degrees. Currently, Joanna is a doctoral candidate at Victoria University due for completion in February 2018 and at the same time completing the Graduate Certificate in Tertiary Education.  In addition to her own research into social influence and its impact on student choice of universities, she is part of a research team working on blended learning practices.



  • Z. Adam Krezel, Faculty of Science, Engineering and Built Environment, Deakin University, 1 Gheringhap Street, Geelong


    scientific interests: structural and environmental engineering


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How to Cite

Krezel, J., & Krezel, Z. A. (2017). Social influence and student choice of higher education institution. Journal of Education Culture and Society, 8(2), 116-130.