Students Give Thumbs Up to Social Media

Lori Johnston | April 26, 2011

If you’re headed back to the classroom and haven’t had the time for Facebook and Twitter or only use it to check up on your child or connect occasionally with old high school friends, now’s the time to learn how social networking can help you in school.

Social media can help college students make vital education and career connections, a recent Associated Press-Viacom poll found.

Seven out of 10 students reported that the social media sites are good for creating study groups, working with peers on assignments, and getting information about school activities or assignments.

We see it all the time. On Facebook, students discuss upcoming tests, what they missed if absent, and schedule times to meet up to quick study sessions or all-nighters. That way, you don’t have to try to call classmates to arrange a study group while your kids are wanting a snack or needing you to help them with their homework. Virtual connections are essential during a fast-paced semester!

Students also are using Twitter to keep connected with each other and their professors, some of whom use Twitter to fuel class discussions, too.

If you are unfamiliar with how to use those social media sites, you’ll want to brush up on using social media wisely. If you’re on Facebook, you may want to create a secure group that only your classmates can see to discuss a project or test. If you want to keep your schedule private, message a classmate to plan a study group instead of posting it on their wall. Also, realize that what you’re writing about a certain class could be seen by others (including possible employers), so watch what you’re sharing with all of your Facebook friends.

At the same time, 74 percent of students who responded to the poll say social media is a “good way to distract themselves,” the AP reported.

Keep watch of how much time you spend time on those sites. Jumping onto Facebook or Twitter could be a brief reward you earn after writing a paper or studying a couple of hours. But if you can’t resist checking out the sites every few minutes, you’ll need to come up with a plan for keeping in touch with classmates via social media without harming your GPA.

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