New tool helps Canadian higher education institutions navigate the global talent competition

Canadian international education technology (EdTech) company ApplyBoard has developed a real-time, big data SaaS (software as a service) tool to help higher education (HE) Canadian institutions drive their student populations’ diversity forward. 

Dubbed ApplyBoard Insights Dashboard, the tool contextualizes government data from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) about international students and converts it into insights in the form of customized data visualizations of government and industry data, as well as information on an institution’s prospective students, that the school can review and act on, Craig Haney, director of business development at ApplyBoard, told IT World Canada

For this, Haney said ApplyBoard has a team of data scientists working with IRCC data, ApplyBoard data, and school data to present exclusive insights and research that an institution can get on the Insights Dashboard.

Feature to filter data as per student nationality

“ApplyBoard developed this product because we know how time-consuming and expensive analyzing the latest market data is, especially during the pandemic. Moreover, shifts in international student trends have been transformed and accelerated due to the COVID-19 pandemic, forcing HE institutions to make recruiting decisions with an incomplete view of the sector and student preferences. The tool aims to solve this problem, it helps HE institutions stay informed of emerging student markets while also keeping track of how they are performing in the industry through benchmarking,” explained Haney. 

The dashboard allows HE institutions in Canada to access study permit data, application data, see the programs that students are searching for, benchmark all of this against their peers, and more. 

“A lot of colleges or universities don’t have the right tools to gather or analyze student-related data. The insights provided by the dashboard really help a recruiter on the school side understand what’s the opportunity, what’s the timeline, what’s the chance that the students who are going to get their study permit approved are going to show up on campus,” he added. 

There is a fee associated with the use of the ApplyBoard Insights Dashboard which depends on the amount of information a HE institution wishes to access. ApplyBoard deals with each HE institution on an individual basis and then customizes insights or data visualization for them, said Haney. 

More than 10 Canadian colleges and universities have already started using the tool and are interested in diversifying their school campuses. AB Solutions is only available for Canadian institutions at this time, but there are expansion plans in the works. 

“The Insight Dashboard’s visualization of multiple data sets through charts and graphs has allowed us to quickly identify trends and make strategic decisions on international markets,” said Saurabh Malhotra, senior manager, international recruitment and market development, Fanshawe College, London, ON.


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Pragya Sehgal
Pragya Sehgal
Born and raised in the capital city of India - Delhi - bounded by the river Yamuna on the west, Pragya has climbed the Himalayas, and survived medical professional stream in high school without becoming a patient or a doctor. Pragya now makes her home in Canada with her husband - a digital/online marketing fanatic who also loves to prepare delicious meals for her. When she isn’t working or writing around tech, she’s probably watching art films on Netflix, or wondering whether she should cut her hair short or not. Can be contacted at [email protected] or 647.695.3494.

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