Growing from underdog to overachiever with market research (Laurentian)

In six short years, Laurentian University went from under-performing the market by 4% to over-performing the market by 10% per year. It’s a remarkable transformation.

Like many institutions across the province, Laurentian University was faced with a declining student population of 20% in Northeastern Ontario. They needed to take action and wanted insights on where they fit in the market and how to recruit more domestic and international students.

Academica worked closely with Laurentian University to help them turn their situation around and reach record enrolment numbers. Implementing the University/College Applicant Study (UCAS) and Acceptance Declined Study (ADS), year over year, has allowed Laurentian University to better understand both their market and student decision-making drivers, and most importantly, improve their overall recruitment strategy to attain and exceed enrolment targets.

Academica research data provided the foundation for decision-making to support strategic change. To date, Laurentian University has modified two-thirds of their student recruitment activities based on the data and insights we were able to provide them. Each year they test those strategic changes via UCAS and ADS, and the results have been outstanding.

Our trusted partnership with Laurentian University has helped them shift not only their recruitment activities but their entire business approach. Laurentian’s momentum and growth will not stop there as they continue to refine their business practices and reach new markets each year.

“We went from a slide of 4% or 5% per year to now over-performing the market by 10% per year using the data Academica provided us. If you're not using UCAS to inform your strategic marketing and recruitment decisions, you’re crazy! It's been an exciting transition for us.”
Chris Mercer
Executive Director
Laurentian University

Our responsibilities:

  • trend analysis 
  • applicant research
  • applicant/decliner profile
  • environmental scan
  • student panel


  • Over-performing the market by 10%
  • Modified ⅔ of student recruitment outreach and activities

Start your project with Academica