An empirical study to understand student choice of higher education and marketing strategies of Sri Lankan institutes

Weerawardane, Dinusha (2018) An empirical study to understand student choice of higher education and marketing strategies of Sri Lankan institutes. Doctoral thesis, Cyprus Institute of Marketing.

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Abstract

This study focuses on understanding the relationship between student choice and marketing strategies of private higher education institutions in Sri Lanka. With the higher education industry becoming increasingly competitive, the need for marketing has also augmented over the past few decades, but no relevant research has hitherto been conducted in Sri Lanka, which has been the catalyst for this study.

The literature review discusses various perspectives on higher education marketing and the theoretical framework conceptualises models and theories pertaining to student choice and marketing. The researcher has also put forward a new model to analyse the student choice process in a Sri Lankan context and the marketing mix has been used to critically analyse institutional marketing strategy.

This study is centred around three research questions which investigate (1) the student consumer’s higher education decision process; (2) the marketing strategies of higher education institutions in Sri Lanka; and (3) the relationship between student choice and marketing strategies. The research was carried out in three distinct phases. The first stage involved a series of exploratory interviews to gain preliminary insights, improve the overall research design and serve as a base for the second phase, which consisted of a survey across 800 students from four institutions; a case study analysis of these four institutions was conducted in the final phase through general observation. Information was also obtained through interviews with institutional marketing personnel.

Research findings revealed that Sri Lankan students go through a five-phase higher education decision process and are influenced by their respective socio-cultural and economic backgrounds, the institutes attach varying degrees of importance to the different elements of the marketing mix corresponding to the different stages of the student-consumer decision process, and that there was, in fact, a ‘push-pull’ relationship existing between student choice and marketing strategy.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Subjects: Education > Higher education
Business and finance
Depositing User: Dinusha Weerawardane
Date Deposited: 24 Jan 2019 11:53
Last Modified: 24 Jan 2019 13:22
URI: http://repository.uwl.ac.uk/id/eprint/5761

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