The CoursePricer app can be embedded into schools’ websites, using existing information to calculate an instant, itemised quotation for any course, taking into account students’ accommodation and extra-curricular preferences.
“A system that worked well and provided good information, fast, for anybody, seemed like a good idea; the technology exists, so we got on with it”
The service is being offered to English in Britain members as part of their existing subscription, and has so far been taken up by 115 schools.
The app uses drop-down menus to enable students to input preferences such as length of stay and type of course; accommodation type, including special requests such as an en-suite bathroom; and extra-curricular activities.
It then calculates the cost of the student’s stay, based on these preferences, and emails them a copy of the resulting quotation, along with an SMS summary. The school also receives a copy, enabling them to track enquiries.
The service currently displays prices only in GBP, but a function enabling students to view prices in any currency will be rolled out later this year.
Even for schools that present pricing information clearly on their website, CoursePricer enables students to access information in a way that is “friendly, flexible and fast”, commented David Blackie, director of International Education Connect.
“There are by now quite a lot of online booking systems, some of which are quite elegant and some of which provide quotations, at varying speeds,” he told The PIE News.
“But a system that worked well and provided good information, fast, for anybody, seemed like a good idea; the technology exists for much better quality information than is normally provided on portals and association websites etc., so we got on with it.”