All educators should look for better, more innovative ways to improve their courses. Whether you’re a contract trainer with corporate clients, a facilitator for a continuing education course, or a member of a university administration team, part of your job is to improve the experience of your students. What’s the best way to do that? Use the data you have.

Thanks to software such as XenDirect, today’s education professionals have access to a plethora of data that can help them understand what is working for courses and what needs improvement. But once you gather this information, how do you decide on an action plan?

Below are three important questions you should ask yourself when analyzing data. We also discuss how to apply your data in a proactive way.

1. Does the data show recurring trends? Identifying trends is one of the most crucial aspects of applying data. Take the concept of student feedback. No matter what the size of your student body, feedback is unbelievably useful. You will be able to assess student feedback to identify common threads. For example, a common critique could be that your course does not focus on a certain area of the subject that the students thought vital. If you receive this feedback repeatedly, you can surmise that a majority of students want more of this type of material, and you can adjust your course accordingly.

2. Does the data reveal a change in demographics? As you began to develop your course, you may have thought that it would appeal to one specific type of student. However, your statistics and data might hold a surprise! Some courses could end up having more non-traditional students than originally expected, while other courses might to appeal to students from a different major. The data can reveal any discrepancies–and help you adapt to them all. Regardless of the shift you find thanks to the data, you can change your marketing to accommodate. Another area that can be impacted by demographics is curriculum development. You can measure the feedback from to your students to find why they took the course and what they’d like to see in the future. For example, you might find that students are interested in the overall subject but looking for material that better suits their professional aspirations.

3. Does the data reveal a drop in profits? Your goal as an educator is to ensure that your course is of the highest quality. However, the income your course generates is very important for your organization as well. Study the enrollment numbers, the income brought in by material such as text books, and other various fees. If you notice that there is a drop in profit, you may want to consider a revamped marketing strategy. With software like XenDirect, you will be able to successfully market your course better than ever before and thus maximize enrollment. In fact, our clients have reported a proven ROI because of XenDirect’s economical pricing and its ability to cut costs in other areas of your organization. Since XenDirect streamlines the student enrollment process, any extra overhead can be cut down to a fraction. The convenience of our program will also attract additional students thanks to its innovative and easy-to-manage interface.

The diversity of data available to educators these days is astounding. You can create a dynamic and rewarding program for your learners, no matter the subject matter or industry. But if you keep in mind some of the above ideas, you’ll be able to better serve your learners and create a course that fills up fast!


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Author Rick J. Stern

Entrepreneur Rick Stern built Xenegrade Corp with a focus on service to educational organizations. With an MBA from Simon School of Business at the University of Rochester and over 20 years continuing education management, his experience provides valuable insight into the needs, demands, and trends of the continuing education market.

More posts by Rick J. Stern

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