Polytechnic University of Valencia Congress, Fourth International Conference on Higher Education Advances

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Factors Driving University Choice: A Principal Component Analysis on Italian Institutions
Giovanni Azzone, Mara Soncin

Last modified: 08-05-2018


When investigating students’ motivations to enroll in university, a wide range of elements related to the overall student experience concerning both the institution and the surrounding context should be taken into account. The current study moves from this point to analyse students’ choice factors from a survey completed by 27,705 students across 23 Italian institutions by means of a logistic Principal Component Analysis. Results confirm the presence of multiple factors jointly influencing students’ choice, with geographical proximity, job opportunities in the region, university reputation and ease of access opposing one another. Aggregating results at institutional level, students’ distribution prove to be highly heterogeneous across universities. From this, a managerial tool is provided to position student population and derive strategic implications.  Finally, policy considerations are reported.

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