Publication Date


Advisor(s) - Committee Chair

Dr. Jennifer Mize Smith, Director, Dr. Holly Payne, Dr. Blair Thompson

Degree Program

Department of Communication

Degree Type

Master of Arts


This research explored how memorable messages and formal (official) university messages work together to inform and influence students’ college choices. Recognizing the ways in which university-constructed and other memorable messages influence students’ choice of college could potentially help colleges improve their recruitment messages and distinguish themselves from other institutions. Semi-structured interviews were conducted to obtain data from the participants, and the data were analyzed through a thematic, constant comparative method. Within the context of higher education, findings revealed students’ perceptions of memorable college-related messages, the sources of memorable college-related messages, the characteristics that increase the likelihood that students will recall a college-related message, and the extent to which college-related messages influenced students’ choice of college. This study extends the exploration of the memorable message construct and provides practical implications for university admission offices and their student recruitment efforts.


Communication | Organizational Communication