Information sought by prospective students from social media electronic word-of-mouth during the university choice process

Le, D, Dobele, A and Robinson, L 2019, 'Information sought by prospective students from social media electronic word-of-mouth during the university choice process', Journal of Higher Education Policy and Management, vol. 41, no. 1, pp. 18-34.


Document type: Journal Article
Collection: Journal Articles

Title Information sought by prospective students from social media electronic word-of-mouth during the university choice process
Author(s) Le, D
Dobele, A
Robinson, L
Year 2019
Journal name Journal of Higher Education Policy and Management
Volume number 41
Issue number 1
Start page 18
End page 34
Total pages 17
Publisher Routledge
Abstract Universities are increasingly utilising social media for student recruitment, the most highly used channel for prospective students. However, research on information gathering and electronic word-of-mouth (eWOM)-seeking behaviours on social media is generally absent. This paper explores the information sought by prospective students on social media, by analysing data from actual conversations on Quora, a social media question-and-answer site. Content analysis of 865 questions was conducted to examine the information regarding the factors students seek when selecting a university. The findings report information requirements on five major dimensions, namely reputation, career prospect, learning and leaching, administration and student life. This paper contributes to higher education literature by revealing the university information search factors students most commonly seek on social media, utilising a unique data source derived from actual online questions. Through understanding the eWOM-seeking behaviours of prospective students, universities can more accurately target their social media content.
Subject Marketing not elsewhere classified
Keyword(s) choice factors
electronic word-of-mouth
information requirements
social media
University choice
DOI - identifier 10.1080/1360080X.2018.1538595
Copyright notice © 2018 Association for Tertiary Education Management and the LH Martin Institute for Tertiary Education Leadership and Management
ISSN 1360-080X
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