Right now, graduate enrollments are the only part of the market growing consistently. And with undergraduate and transfer enrollment increasingly uncertain, more institutions hope to capture this graduate growth. But what are the best opportunities in your state or region?
Master’s degrees represent the strongest opportunity for revenue growth for many institutions. EAB’s most recent research finds that the master’s degree market is worth approximately $43.8B (or nearly half of all revenue from adult learners), so it’s easy to see why many enrollment leaders are eager to grow their share of master’s degree revenue. Success, however, is far from guaranteed: understanding the competition is critical to a new or growing program’s future success.
When deciding to launch a new program or assessing an existing portfolio, many institutions look to the biggest programs in the country or in their state to determine their best opportunities. Master’s degree programs in fields offering high-paying jobs and plentiful work opportunities also often look like a sure bet.
But recent trends suggest that simply considering the most popular fields may be misleading. For example, master’s degree programs like the MBA or a MS in Computer Science may enroll many students, but enrollments in both programs have been declining in recent years in many states and regions. There are fewer and fewer students to go around and the competition is only becoming fiercer.
To help colleges and universities quickly assess whether large fields represent a true growth opportunity, EAB has launched a new research effort. The Master’s Market Competitive Intelligence Reports bring together insight about market size and competition to show where the growth potential is in each state and region. More than data alone, these reports offer discussion questions and recommendations for how to use this market intelligence.
Here are three ways to use these reports in your decisions about how to grow master’s degree revenue:
1. Launch programs that are positioned to succeed in your state
These reports include vital statistics about the most popular program fields in your state or region to right-size expectations for an existing program or new launch, including:
- Recent growth trends by program field to determine if a launch is a good idea or not
- Data detailing how concentrated a program field is in terms of its existing competition
- Top competitors in that state or region by degrees conferred
Sample EAB's Master’s Market Competitive Intelligence Report
2. Reposition and revitalize existing programs
With budgets tightening, it may not be feasible to focus on new program launches. But your team can also use the Master’s Market Competitive Intelligence Reports to identify which programs in your portfolio are underperforming relative to other competitors in your state or region. We’ve also included best practice recommendations for program launch, revitalization, and sunsetting from our Professional and Adult Education Forum’s research library.
3. Capitalize on your current successes
You can also use these reports to understand what makes a successful and popular master’s degree program by further understanding the market in which you’re competing. Find out which of your programs are excelling compared to the competition and replicate those tactics elsewhere in your portfolio. And keep an eye out for our upcoming institution-level reports (available to EAB partners), which will directly compare an individual school’s data against statewide or regional data.
Download the Master’s Market Competitive Intelligence Report for your state or region
Understand the largest fields, biggest competitors, and best opportunities in each state and region.