HEQCO report on college applicant behaviour finds learning format matters, younger applicants less keen on online education


The Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario (HEQCO) has published a report on Ontario college applicants’ decision-making processes. The study drew on data from OCAS to understand applicants’ evolving attitudes toward online learning. The researchers found that learning format was a key driver of decision making for all applicants. As a whole, applicants were more open to online learning than prior to the pandemic, but there was a notable difference between age groups: 16-to-24-year-old students are reportedly less enthusiastic about this method than their 25-to-34-year-old counterparts. The authors encourage colleges to monitor applicant and student preferences in order to optimize their program and course offerings.