International Students House

The brief

International Students House (ISH) is a charity dedicated to British and International Students in London. They provide a vibrant student centre and accommodation for over 600 people across 4 London sites. It is used by students attending London universities that are part of their International Partnership Scheme.

Fundamentally, ISH provides talented young people with a “home away from home” at one of the most crucial stages in their lives and personal development. Underpinned by the desire to promote better international relations and culture, it not only provides more affordable living, but also social engagement, extracurricular activities, support services to international students, and scholarships to enable overseas students to study in London and return home to assist in their country’s development.

ISH were eager to gain feedback from their residents, alumni and service users in order to determine their level of satisfaction with ISH accommodation and services; to ensure that they are meeting their mission; and to examine where they could improve in future to raise resident and user satisfaction even further.

Our approach and methodology

Shift Learning designed and delivered a multi-modal approach to the work ensuring that it was carried out within a three month period.

Phase 1 – Desk research
  • Environmental analysis – looking at changes to the make-up of international students in London and potential future trends
  • Competitor analysis – understanding the changing competitive landscape in London student housing
  • Analysis of internal data – gaining a full picture of trends in applications to stay at ISH
Phase 2 – Internal interviews
  • Face to face interviews with internal stakeholders to gain a full picture of key decisions to be taken by the ISH team
Phase 3 – Depth interviews with residents and non-residents
  • 30 depth interviews with current ISH residents with a large percentage taking place on site to gain additional depth and context
  • 20 depth telephone interviews with ISH service users (non-residents)
Phase 4 – eSurveys
  • An eSurvey sent to ISH alumni and exiting residents
  • An eSurvey to undergraduate and postgraduate students of London Universities not currently resident at ISH

All interview scripts, eSurveys and focus group guides were developed in close collaboration with ISH through regular progress calls, meetings and emails.

Delivering results and value to our client

The Shift Learning team brought insight to ISH to help inform their strategy through:

  • A final PowerPoint report complete with recommendations and an executive summary
  • Fully analysed data set including open comments
  • Transcripts and analysis grids
  • A presentation of results to key stakeholders