What Adult Learners Look For When Choosing A Career Education School

It’s a simple fact. Adult learners enroll in career colleges, vocational schools, trade schools, tech academies and bootcamps for one reason: they want to either further their current careers or begin new ones. For decades now, career schools have provided adult learners with this exact pathway.

However, times are changing, and so are the students. With so much competition in the adult education industry, students now have more choices than ever when it comes to deciding on which schools best fit their needs; and outside of their education and career goals, are looking for a few specific things when it comes to choosing a school.

Conversion Media Group speaks with thousands of adults looking to enroll in career colleges and skills schools EVERYDAY. The feedback they give us could help your institution better understand their needs… allowing you to better cater to them, and boost enrollment.

We’ll discuss enrollment in a moment.

First, here’s what adult learners tell us they want from their career education schools:

With the advent of at-your-fingertips technology, adult learners fully expect their choice school to offer at least some online or hybrid learning opportunities. Even enrollees in trade schools, where most learning is hands-on, want at least a portion of their education to be available online.

A recent report from Bay View Analytic shows, 73% of learners say they want to take at least some of their courses online, with 68% saying they’d like to see an increased use of digital materials and resources.[1]

This rings especially true for adults who already work full time as well as single parents that are looking for continued or skills education opportunities that fit into their current work/life schedule.

Simply put, adult learners want convenience and flexibility, and schools that offer this will undoubtedly have a leg-up on the competition.

Adult learners also expect a higher-quality education at an affordable price. But more than this, they want to know how and why it makes long-term sense for them.

As highlighted in a recent Forbes article, more than 80% of working adults say they may return to education. But half are not sure how a furthered, or a new career education will really help them.[2]

For career educators, it’s important to not only highlight the immediate benefits students may see once graduating, but to highlight the future, long-term benefits they may enjoy as well.

Now, it’s important to know that many adult learners we speak with are looking for skills-based learning, rather than traditional four-year-degree-based learning. The new economy has shown us that traditional college degrees are no longer the end-all-be-all path to earning a great salary.

This new economy is one big reason why the proportion of high school students who considered a four-year degree has plummeted from 71% to 48% since 2020.[3]

But it’s not just high schoolers who understand the new, specialized economy. Adult learners are flocking to career education as well. They too are looking to gain the skills they need to either further their current careers or start new ones.

But they tell us they want career educators who understand their needs and difficult schedules, while providing them the flexibility to learn the tools they need for long-term success.

As noted earlier, Conversion Media Group is in constant contact with thousands of adults daily who want to enroll in a career school, trade school, vocational school or bootcamp. Many of whom are looking for short “certification” courses as well.

Because of these conversations, we know exactly what they want in a career education and which schools are the best fit for them.

Chances are, you’re one of these schools, but adult learners haven’t heard enough about what you have to offer them yet.

By having a quick chat to go over your career courses, certification offerings and enrollment needs, we can match you with hundreds or thousands, depending on the program offerings, of prospective students every month who may find your school to be that perfect fit…

Whether you need 50, 100, 1,000 new students or more, Conversion Media Group can help you reach your enrollment goals. It’s our expertise.

If you’re interested in learning more about how Conversion Media Group can drive qualified education leads, applications, and enrollments to your institution – call one of our education specialists today at: (+1) 800 419 3201.

Or you can contact us HERE, and an adult education enrollment expert will get back with you as soon as possible.

[1] Microsoft Word – Pulse4.docx (bayviewanalytics.com)

[2] Careers And Education Need To Go Hand In Hand —Or We Can Expect A Dropout Crisis For Working Adults (forbes.com)

[3] Higher demand and better pay fueling popularity of trade schools – The Washington Post

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