Should Polytechnics Rely Solely on International Agents to Recruit International Students? A Case Study in New Zealand

  •  Shaohua Yang    
  •  M. Akhtaruzzaman    


The aim of this paper is to investigate whether polytechnics should rely solely on international agents to recruit international students or not. To analyse the use of agents to recruit international students by tertiary institutions in New Zealand, this study attempts to find effectiveness and shortcomings of using international agents as a marketing strategy in recruiting international students. Though marketing strategies of marketing higher education is not new to the Anglo-Saxon countries (UK, US, and Australia), however, such marketing strategies of tertiary institutions in New Zealand have not been examined empirically. Deductive method of research was adopted and a total of 150 international students who studied at undergraduate and postgraduate level in a polytechnic in the Bay of Plenty in New Zealand participated in the research. The empirical findings of the research suggest that most international students relied on international agents for visa application and for enrolment process. A significant concern that a large proportion of the international students pointed to is the information mismatch between the promises by the agents and the reality that the international students faced here in New Zealand. It is suggested that relying solely on international agents to recruit international students might not be a sustainable marketing strategy for the tertiary institutions and other marketing strategies needs to be explored as well. Several policy implications in marketing strategy of higher education are also suggested in this study. 

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
  • ISSN(Print): 1918-719X
  • ISSN(Online): 1918-7203
  • Started: 2009
  • Frequency: quarterly

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