2010 Admissions Funnel Report

Undergraduate enrollment trends for four-year public and private institutions

2010 Admissions Funnel Report, part of the Noel-Levitz Higher Education Benchmarks Series

To assist campuses with accurately forecasting enrollments, this report continues Noel-Levitz’s long-standing research into admissions funnel conversion and yield rates. The report is based on a Web-based survey of college and university admissions officials in September and October, 2010, in which respondents reported fall 2010 and fall 2009 data. For context, data from previous Noel-Levitz surveys are offered for comparison. Among the highlights:

  • Yield rates (from admit to enroll) for first-year and transfer students continued their downward trend for private colleges, while yield rates for public universities are either leveling off or following no noticeable trend lines.
  • The rising "secret shopper" applicant trend reported earlier by Noel-Levitz—and the corresponding rise in inquiry-to-applicant conversion rates for first-year and transfer students—continued to gain steam. For fall 2010, fully one-third of first-year applicants and approximately half of transfer applicants did not identify themselves to their chosen institution(s) until they submitted an application.
  • Admitted, first-year applicants who applied online continued to yield at lower rates than mail-in admitted applicants, while first-year, in-state admitted applicants continued to yield at higher rates than out-of-state and international admitted applicants.
  • Up to 22 percent of first-year students failed to complete their applications, led by online applicants at private colleges.

 This report is part of the Higher Education Benchmarks report series.

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