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Improving student retention through smart card technology
Start Quote The smart ID card has huge marketing potential, itís an opportunity to show off your brand End Quote
Paul Canal, Marketing Manager, IDXtra

 A group of experts led a seminar on smart card technology at the Student Recruitment and Retention in FE Colleges – Tackling the Falling Numbers of Students conference.

Paul Canal, Marketing Manager of IDXtra, pointed out that such technology is being used across the country and around the world for a wide range of purposes, such as cashless payments; PC logins and voting in student elections.

He also explained the psychology behind the receipt of smart cards that also double as ID cards.

“Issuing a learner with an ID card tells them that they truly belong to the institution,” he said.

“They are a member and they have members’ privileges. There’s an immediate elevation of status, and possibly a little bit of pride creeps in... because joining may not be an option for some of their peers. The ID card reinforces that achievement; they are on the road to success.”

He added: “The smart ID card has huge marketing potential, it’s an opportunity to show off your brand.”

He also talked about a system which allows staff and students to swipe cards when attending lectures, giving institutions information on attendance and time-keeping.

Mr Canal said this ‘substantial saving of staff time’ gives a significant and rapid return on investment, as less teaching time is wasted. It will also improve retention as bursary payments flow more quickly to students, he said.

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