Create a List of Prospective Students to Recruit

Learning Objectives 

After completing this unit, you’ll be able to:

  • Organize data for prospective students in EDA.
  • Describe how different account record types work in EDA.
  • Create a list of prospective students, based on specific parameters.

What Qualifies as a Report in EDA?

A report can be as simple as a list of records that meet criteria you define, but a report can also be much more than that. You can take that list and filter and create data groups, add formulas, and customize the type of chart or graph you want to use to display the data. You can run a report on any object in Education Data Architecture (EDA), including custom objects. Any report, no matter what data it contains and what it looks like, is a powerful way to get the answers you need to your important questions.

In each unit of this module, we show you how to create a report for a different part of your institution: Recruitment and Admissions, Student Experience, K-12 schools, and Advancement.

Want to Get Hands-On with EDA Reports?

In this module, we show you the steps to create multiple reports in EDA. There aren’t any hands-on challenges in this module, but if you want to practice and try out the steps, you can register for a free EDA trial with sample data. (A Trailhead Playground doesn’t have EDA.)

Already have an active EDA trial installed from getting hands-on in previous EDA modules? Great! You can use that same trial org to practice building reports in this module.

Here’s how to get the free trial edition now.

  1. Click here to open the Education Data Architecture (EDA) Trial Page.
  2. Fill out the form completely. 
    1. For Email, enter an active email address that’s unknown to Salesforce. The email address you provide becomes the username in this new trial org. Usernames must be globally unique across all instances of Salesforce, so you must use an email account that is unknown to Salesforce or your installation won’t work.
  3. After you fill out the form, click Submit. A confirmation message appears.
  4. When you receive the activation email (this might take a few minutes), open it and click Verify Account.
  5. Complete your registration by setting your password and challenge question. Tip: Write down your username, password, and login URL for easy access later.


Don’t forget to complete the Power of Us application at some point during your 30-day trial period. Once your application has been approved, your trial version converts to a permanent Salesforce org. If you don’t complete your Power of Us application within 30 days, you lose access to your trial org.

Reporting for Recruitment and Admissions

It’s application season and high school students from all over the country are beginning to choose which colleges and universities to apply to. College admissions recruiters have one of the toughest jobs around—tracking the hundreds, and often thousands, of students who expressed interest in their higher ed institution.

In this unit, you step into the shoes of one of those admissions recruiters: Marquis Brown, recruiter for Cloudy College. We show you how Marquis uses Salesforce and EDA to turn his daunting job into a process that’s streamlined and efficient. Specifically, we follow Marquis as he tackles one of the most common reporting use cases for admissions recruiters: identifying students from a subset of high schools who expressed interest in academic programs at Cloudy College.

You may be familiar with Marquis and Cloudy College from other Education Cloud modules, but here’s a refresher just in case.

  • Marquis Bryant is a recruiter for Cloudy College. He’s responsible for representing Cloudy at college fairs, on-campus events, conferences, and recruitment events both locally and nationally. He supports prospective students with information about the admissions process, including application requirements and deadlines. Marquis assists with the scheduling, planning, and execution of all admission special events, including Student Visit Days, Open Houses, Accepted Student Days, and information sessions.

  • Cloudy College is a fictional private, coed liberal arts college in the Northwest. Founded in 1964, Cloudy College recently enrolled more than 3,800 students for their fall semester.

Because Salesforce and EDA are all about data, as a recruiter using Salesforce, Marquis needs to think about his recruiting task in those terms. Here’s what he’s looking for.

  • A list of current high school students
  • From all the high schools in the geographic region that he covers
  • Who expressed interest in an academic program at Cloudy College

If you plan to practice creating this report in your EDA trial org, get ready to use these three criteria to filter your data. But before you even think of filtering, you need to think about the data architecture itself, because with EDA, that’s where it all begins.



The explanations and data analyses we provide in this module assume that you’re already familiar with the various components of EDA. If you’re not, check out the EDA Basics module, which you can find linked in the Resources section at the end of this unit.

Prospective Students: Organizing the Data

Whether you’re tracking a small set of high school students, or a nationwide sampling of prospects, there are many ways you can organize your data in Salesforce. EDA provides an out-of-the-box organizational data structure you can use as a baseline, so that you don’t have to plan so much on your own. In this section, we offer some best practices advice on how to use EDA to build a streamlined system that gives you the results you need.

Conveniently, EDA comes with Salesforce fields and objects that let you easily set up the data you need to track in an integrated way. Let’s take a look at a prospective high school student Marquis is recruiting, Joseph Halloway.

Contact record for prospective student Joseph Halloway showing two affiliations: his current high school and his prospective major of study.

You can see from Joseph’s administrative account record that Marquis is using the EDA Affiliations object to track the main pieces of data he’s interested in. The Affiliations object is a junction object that connects Joseph Halloway to two other accounts—Ichabod County High School, a school in the geographic region Marquis covers, and BS Biology, a premier program at Cloudy College. Marquis set a specific role and status for each of these affiliations: Joseph is a current student at Ichabod County High School and he’s a current prospect for the BS Biology degree. These values are important, and we explain why a little later.

One level deeper, on the account record for each affiliated account, we see what those two affiliated accounts are. The Ichabod County High School record is an account with a record type of Educational Institution. The BS Biology record is an account with a record type of Academic Program.

Account Record Types highlighted on affiliated accounts.

These record types are important. Remember that in EDA, a contact can have one primary affiliation for each default record type. (See the Constituent Management in EDA module, linked in the Resources section, for a refresher on primary affiliations if you need one.) For Joseph, Marquis set each of these accounts as a primary affiliation to get the reporting results he’s after. If he doesn't do that, the data isn’t available through Joseph’s contact record, which is where Marquis needs to see it if he later wants to include the information in his report.

Prospective student Joseph Halloway’s primary affiliation is the high school where he’s currently enrolled.

So there you have it—a simple, elegant way for Marquis to organize his data for prospective students in EDA, using accounts, account record types, affiliations, and primary affiliations. Now that his architecture is in place, and his data is entered, he’s ready to get some results.

In the next sections, we show you how to create useful reports with all the data we just talked about. If you want to follow along in your own EDA trial org, create some sample data to work with.

  1. Create contact records for 12 students, all affiliated with particular high schools. (In this example, Marquis is recruiting from four different high schools, with three students at each.) When you create the affiliations, be sure to set the Affiliation Role to Student, and the Affiliation Status to Current.

  2. Create additional affiliations to various academic programs for eight of those students. When you create these affiliations, be sure to set the Affiliation Role to Prospect, and the Affiliation Status to Current.

Creating this data set is optional but necessary if you want to practice creating the report for recruitment and admissions. Move on to the next section if you’d like to just follow along as Marquis creates the report.

Create a Contact & Accounts Report

So how does Marquis get the data he’s after? He’s going to use EDA in conjunction with one of Salesforce’s most powerful features: reports.

  1. Click the Reports tab. (If you don’t see the Reports tab, you can access Reports from the App Launcher ( App Launcher icon ) under All Items.)
  2. Click New Report.
  3. Expand the Accounts & Contacts folder and select the Contacts & Accounts report type.

    Select the Contacts & Accounts report type then click Continue.

  4. Click Continue.

Marquis is using the Contacts & Accounts report type in Salesforce because it lets him drill down into those all-important, EDA-specific affiliations.

Create a Cross Filter for Current High School Students

Next, he creates a cross filter, so that he can look at data across various, integrated objects.

  1. In the new, unsaved report, click the Filters dropdown menu, and select Add Cross Filter.

    Select Add Cross Filter from the filter dropdown.

  2. Set the filter to Contacts with Affiliated Accounts.

    Cross filter set to Contacts with Affiliated Accounts

  3. Click Add Affiliated Accounts Filter, and add the following filters.
    • Role equals Student
    • Status equals Current
    • Organization contains school (Tip: Don’t use “high school,” because not all the schools you track have “high” in their name!)

      Filtered results for twelve prospective students in the Preview pane

  4. Make sure that the other fields on the report don’t restrict your data. For example, Marquis verifies that the Show menu is set to All Accounts, and the Date Range is set to All Time. That way, his report includes as many results as possible, regardless of who created the records, or when.
  5. To run the report, click Save & Run.

Marquis sees a list of students from the four high schools in his geographic area. (In this example, there are 12 students.)

These are the students he’s tracked over time, for one reason or another. Not all of them have expressed interest in a particular program at Cloudy College. Let’s narrow the results by adding another cross filter to the report.

Create a Second Cross Filter for Current Prospects

  1. Click the Filters dropdown menu again, and select Add Cross Filter.
  2. Set the new filter to Contacts with Affiliated Accounts, just as you did before.
  3. Click Add Affiliated Accounts Filter, and add the following filters.
    1. Role equals Prospect
    2. Affiliation Type equals academic program
    3. Status equals Current
  4. To run the report, click Save & Run.

    The list of prospective students now includes only those students Marquis designated as “prospects”— that is, students who expressed interest in a particular academic program. (In this example, there are eight students.)

    The Primary Educational Institution and Primary Academic Program of the eight prospects that match the filtered Contacts with Affiliated Accounts parameters.

    “But wait!” Marquis says—that’s not quite good enough. He wants to know which programs these students are interested in and which high school each student is from. EDA and Salesforce reporting enable him to see that information—as long as he’s set those primary affiliations, which we talked about earlier.

  5. Scroll down in the Fields column to the Contact: Custom Info folder, and look for the cluster of Primary fields.

    The Contact: Custom Info folder with primary affiliations fields highlighted.

  6. Drag the Primary Educational Institution and the Primary Academic Program fields into the preview pane to add them to the report.
  7. Save the report with a name like “Interested High School Students” and a description.

    Report with the following fields: First Name, Last Name, Primary Academic Program, Primary Educational Institution, and Account Name

    That’s all Marquis needs to do to build an amazingly useful report with Salesforce and EDA. He can return to this report over and over again, and it updates automatically with data he adds or edits. But remember, your results are only as good as the data you provide, so follow the best practices modeled by Marquis when architecting and entering data into Salesforce.

    Ready to see reporting in action on a Student Experience team? Head to the next unit to explore reporting on student attendance using custom report types.


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