4 Ways to Promote National Student Surveys Using Your Campus App

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How do you feel about answering a survey?

  1. Sure, always happy to take part in a survey
  2. If I have time, I’ll answer survey questions
  3. Depends on who is asking the questions
  4. Wild horses couldn’t drag me to answer survey questions

If you answered A – that’s commendable. But if you answered B, C, or D – you’re not alone. In recent years, people have become increasingly wary of participating in surveys, for a number of reasons: a lack of transparency about who’s conducting these surveys and how the answers are being manipulated, time constraints and survey fatigue can cause individuals to avoid surveys altogether.

These days, many countries around the world are conducting their annual student survey, including the NSSE survey in the US and the NSS in the UK. The surveys provide an opportunity for students to give feedback about what it has been like to study at their university or college. For students, it gives a powerful collective voice that will help shape the future of teaching and learning for current and prospective students.

Furthermore, after a tumultuous year that introduced widespread virtual learning programs and saw a decline in enrollment rates, the data from student surveys can be a lifeline for universities as they determine new key success factors and roadmaps for the next normal.

The potential benefits of these surveys for students are many, and universities can often demonstrate how they used previous surveys to offer better campus or scholastic experiences. Nevertheless, overcoming implicit survey bias and persuading already overwhelmed students to take part in national surveys remains a challenge for many universities.

Leverage your mobile app to Increase Survey participation

Mobile campus apps were helping universities connect with their students long before social distancing became a factor. As campuses begin to promote student surveys, here are four ways that a student engagement platform can drive survey awareness and increase respondent rates.

Create and update a dedicated tile on the app homepage for the survey

Students turn to campus apps to access a variety of campus services through a single-entry point. By creating a standalone tile on the app homepage that links out to the survey, universities make it easy for students to submit their answers from within the app. App administrators can configure the tile to stand out with colors, typography and other modifications to draw attention to the tile and to the survey. The information can also be updated to showcase increase in response rates, time left for responses and more.

Send frequent push notifications

Sending push notification reminders can prompt students to fill out the survey. Referencing the time left to respond to the survey can generate a sense of urgency, while personalizing push notifications according to student roles can increase open rates and participation.

A time-based push notification example:

  • Only 3 days left to fill out the NSSE survey and claim your free pizza!

A role-based push notification example (students in the Dungeons and Dragons club, all years):

  • You roll a 6. You fill out the NSS survey to unlock a portal of student benefits. Join the quest to create better campus experiences here.

Create an in-app poll to create buzz around the survey

Students may not be motivated to take a survey that could potentially benefit their future selves, but they may be more likely to fill out a survey if there’s instant gratification involved.

Many universities use incentives such as gift cards or food vouchers to encourage students to take part in national surveys and other university initiatives. Polling students about how to reward survey respondents can spark positive attitudes towards the survey itself and inspire less-active students to fill out the survey for a chance to win a prize.

Feature the survey in your banner tile

Banner tiles use a carousel of revolving content to advertise upcoming events and new services. The advantage of a banner tile is that, unlike static or even live tiles, banner tiles draw attention by the constant movement of the sliding content and unique promotional graphics of each piece of content in the banner.

Like a dedicated tile, the banner slide can link directly to the survey – once a student’s interest is piqued, it’s easy for her to access and complete the survey from within the app.

campusM is a powerful campus app that helps universities improve student engagement on a daily basis. For more information about how campusM is making it simple for universities to provide outstanding mobile student experiences and services, click here.

Hadas Tayeb
Product Marketing Manager at campusM
Hadas Tayeb is the product marketing manager for Ex Libris' student engagement platform, campusM. Hadas is fascinated by how SaaS products are transforming real-world educational experiences for the better (and by how to tell that story). In her spare time, Hadas likes to write about herself in the third person.
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