Social influence and student choice of higher education institution
AbstractThis 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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