On Monday, Facebook announced plans to explore opening its services to children under 13 years old. This announcement raised many questions about the safety, privacy, harassment policies, and educational value of Facebook for kids. With 78 percent of parents helping to create their child's Facebook account, it is crucial for families to h ave all the answers.
Though children using Facebook can be a scary and dangerous situation, there are several steps that parents can take to prevent themselves and their children from scams and invasions of privacy.
Learn more about Facebook safety, privacy, and how to make Facebook the best possible experience for your family. Read more...
Today marks the third update to StudentAdvisor's Top 100 Social Media Colleges list. Harvard University (#1) has risen back to the top of the rankings displacing Johns Hopkins University (#2). Both schools have extraordinary social media communities and continue to innovate and execute their social media strategies exceptionally well. The biggest movers and shakers this time around? Full Sail University climbed 31 spots to secure the #19 position while M.I.T. bolted ahead 24 spots to claim #25.
Since the last update to our Top 100 Social Media Colleges list, so much has changed in the social media world! The use of image sharing social networks has exploded in popularity with Pinterest and Instagram. Google+ pages give colleges like Duke University the ability to answer questions live via video Hangouts.
Rising Stars in Higher Ed Social Media
Other notable movements include the University of Washington- Seattle landing a spot in the Top 10 and 13 colleges earning their first Top 100 placements. RISD, Caltech, Morehouse College, and St. John's University New York are just a few of the new additions to this list of colleges making big things happen with social media.
How Do We Do It?
StudentAdvisor's Top Social Media Colleges ranking compares more than 6,000 federally recognized colleges and universities and post-secondary schools in the United States in terms of their mastery of public social media methods, tools and websites. The top 100 of those schools are shown in the ranking list, which is regularly updated.
The StudentAdvisor research team continuously collects information on how active and effective each school is at engaging their audiences on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and other social media tools, such as iTunes and podcasts. The ranking methodology also takes into account the size of each school's population, as well as other metrics, to gauge overall reach and effectiveness. The team then produces a strictly quantitative score for each school based on this information, and updates the findings regularly.
By Sam Coren
Thought you were comfortable adjusting privacy settings on your Facebook profile after the last round of changes? Get ready: privacy settings are about to change yet again for the social networking juggernaut. While some users have had Facebook's new Timeline-style profile through the developer application, it has finally started to roll out officially to all users this week.
But there's more to this slick new photo-centric Facebook profile than meets the eye. WCBV Boston's Newscenter spoke with StudentAdvisor's Dean Tsouvalas and Ashley Jones in addition to Emerson College student Anum Hussain about Facebook Timeline's privacy issues:
What you should do once you get Facebook Timline:
When your profile transitions to Timline you have 7 days to delete posts and pictures before they get published to your new profile.
- Go through post by post starting with the year you joined Facebook and click the pencil next to each post to adjust the settings.
- Use the "View as" feature (accesible via the on the bottom right of your cover photo) to preview what certain friends are able to see.
- Log out of Facebook to see what's viewable on your public profile to a user who isn't signed in.
- Be mindful of the privacy settings on each new post you publish - if you posted a public update the next time you go to post something, it may still be stuck on the "Public" setting.
By Sam Coren & Taylor Cotter
Every week StudentAdvisor compiles the top stories in college news. Here are some of the biggest stories that made the headlines this week:
Common App to be overhauled for 2013.
The Common Application, the all-purpose college application accepted by 456 colleges and universities, is planning a major redesign for 2013. The Common App, which handles three million applications, will be revamped to process more student information. Students will be able to only view one essay question at a time, minimizing the risk of losing all answers. Common App is also considering offering a team of college counselors to answer questions students may have about their applications. Additionally, the new website will have less stifling word limits and likely be accessible from iPads and tablets.
Syracuse student returns to school after 5-month expulsion over Facebook post.
Matthew Werenczak, an education student at Syracuse University who was expelled in September 2011, returned to school this week. Werenczak was expelled for making a Facebook post about a comment he overheard while student teaching from member of the city's Concerned Citizens Action Program, who allegedly said he wished the school would hire more teachers from historically black colleges. Werenczak wrote on Facebook that he found the comment racist. Werenczak was expelled and pulled from his student teaching program for offensive and unprofessional comments. After raising first-amendment issues with the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, Werenczak had been readmitted to the education program and can resume student teaching this spring.
Apple offers iPad textbooks for high school students.
At Thursday’s keynote speech, Apple unveiled iBooks 2, an iPad app that will offer iPad specific textbooks from McGraw-Hill, Pearson and Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. The textbooks will offer dynamic features like diagrams, photos, video clips and 3-D objects. Students will have the ability to virtually highlight text and use search functions to look up terms. Additionally, Apple offered an app called iBooks Author, which allows teachers to create their own interactive textbooks particular to their courses. iBooks textbooks are currently only available for high school students. We can only hope iBooks 2 will make its way to the college quad soon.
Florida Public College Presidents Want Higher Tuition Rate for STEM Students
Presidents at the University of Florida and Florida State University are encouraging law makers to allow colleges to charge higher, market based tuition rates for students enrolled in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) programs. In a time of tight education spending and budget cuts, lawmakers and college presidents are considering the benefits of market-based tuition for degree programs that have higher funding costs.
Have a college news story that you think should be featured on This Week in College News? Send suggestions to content[at]studentadvisor.com.
Photo: UBC Library
By Stephanie Miceli
Once upon a time, when students received the big envelope from their dream college, they called their friends. Now, students rely on social networks to break the news. All of a sudden, your feeds are flooding with acceptance posts. Not only does social media make it faster to share good news, it makes it easier to act in ways you wouldn’t in “real-life.”
While it’s natural to want to join in on exciting college acceptance conversations, it’s important to put yourself in the shoes of a student who is still waiting for decision letters, or perhaps turned down from his top school. Here are some tips in how you can celebrate- with others’ feelings in mind:
The Do's of Posting Your College Acceptance on Facebook
Do join Facebook groups for admitted students.
This is an appropriate place to share your excitement without the risk of causing jealousy- and a great way to connect with current students and learn if the school really is for you.
Do consider holding off on posting which college you’re going to until you have officially confirmed you are going.
Several things could happen between getting your acceptance packet and May 1- your financial situation could change, or if the college could rescind its offer if your grades drop. Such scenarios are embarrassing to explain- much like going from “In a Relationship” to “Single.”
Do show your support for fellow classmates if they choose to announce their acceptances.
The positivity will come back to you when you have your turn in the spotlight!
Do feel free to share your acceptance news in a more general sense.
For example, it's totally cool to post, “I got my first acceptance letter!”), rather than, “I got accepted to (x) college!” until you’ve settled all final details.
Do consider starting a mini- social media detox if the acceptance posts are just making you more stressed.
Besides, you’ve put so much time into your applications, and should reward yourself with some “you” time!
The Don'ts of Posting Your College Acceptance on Facebook
Don’t let the application process strain your friendships (on Facebook and in real life).
Some schools offer a great amount of transparency into the college application process-allowing students to view each other’s grades and class rankings, and listing where its students are attending college. This sometimes brings touchy situations- what if a friend gets accepted to a school that you are rejected to (or vice versa)? What if a friend refers to your “safety school” as her reach school? The best way to handle this is to have one-on-one conversations with your friends before taking to social media; and emphasize your genuine interest in the colleges in those conversations.
Don’t put down the school that accepted you.
Saying something like, “Got accepted to (x college), no surprise because getting in is a joke” is boastful and is also risky. Colleges usually have communications staff monitor social networks for what people are saying, and if someone catches that post, the joke’s now on you.
Don’t blindly friend people who go to that college.
You don’t want to gain a reputation as the over-eager freshman before you even set foot on campus. However, if a current student posts in an accepted student group and clearly welcomes friend requests, that’s fine-just be sure to send them an introductory message, too.
Don’t leave negative comments.
It’s natural to be jealous of others who got the acceptance you wanted-but that’s journal material, not Facebook status material. Recently, after not making the Who’s Who list, a fellow senior posted on Facebook, “sorry I was doing real work and not singing show tunes every day.” This displayed poor sportsmanship, and caused others to wonder why she had nominated herself for the award in the first place.
Don’t let the excitement fuel your disappointment.
It’s not worthwhile to compare yourself to other applicants. Instead, focus on yourself and what you can do to stand out to colleges.
By Megan Kenslea
Every week StudentAdvisor compiles the top stories in college news. Here are the some of the biggest stories that made the headlines this week:
Occupy Wall Street Movement Hits Colleges
The Occupy Wall Street movement that is sweeping the nation this week has now made its way to college campuses. From schools including Brown, Harvard, Northeastern and SUNY at Purchase, and many others, students frustrated with the national debt, job market, and general state of the economy have taken to the streets to join the movement. "I don’t know anybody who feels secure about their economic future," said Victoria Porell, a Northeastern third year who helped organize her campus walk-out. “Students don’t have lobbyists. We work hard. We pay our taxes. We are the future. Who’s going to look out for our interests other than us? We don’t have anyone else on our side and that’s pretty much been proven.”
Maine Community College Enrollment at its highest ever
Enrollment in the Maine Community College System has increased so much in recent years that thousands of students have been placed on waiting lists this fall, officials say. Since 2003, enrollment has increased by over 83 percent, and this fall, 84 occupational programs at the seven schools in the system are over capacity, system president John Fitzsimmons said. About 1.5 percent of the state population is enrolled in the Community College system, half of the national 3 percent average. "The cloud over the good news is that we’re turning away thousands of good students who want to come in," Fitzsimmons said.
Pictures of Alcohol on Facebook May Signal Larger Problem
Facebook photos of drinking or status updates about alcohol could signify a student has a serious drinking problem, a study published this week found. The Archives of Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine published a study this week that found that college students who post photos on Facebook of themselves holding drinks, or post statuses about drinking are four times more likely to develop a drinking problem than those who do not.
The California Department of Education announced this week that 75 percent of all high school graduates in California go to college. Nationally, about 39 percent of high school graduates attend college. A new data tracking system allows the state to cross reference high school graduates with students enrolled in U.S. universities. 50 percent of high school grads move on to in-state public universities. The system does not track the college graduation rate.
Have a college news story that you think should be featured on This Week in College News? Send stories to content[at]studentadvisor.com.
Photo: Bob Jagendorf
By Megan Kenslea
As September approaches, most students have back to school on the mind. Some schools have already started, while others are still gearing up for the new year, but either way, it's been a busy week in college news. The top headlines this week? A controversial new question on college applications, a case of Facebook oversharing, and a surprise resignation in the Ivy League, make sure to do your homework and stay up-to-date on this week's biggest stories.
Columbia College Dean Resigns Two Weeks Before Classes Begin
After serving as the Dean of Columbia College for two years, Michelle M. Moody-Adams resigned abruptly this week, just two weeks before the start of classes. In an email to alumni and donors, Moody-Adams wrote that transformations at the university had compromised her authority over “crucial policy, fund-raising and budgetary matters.” Though Moody-Adams wrote that she intended to remain at the college for the upcoming school year, university president Lee C. Bollinger recommended it was in the best interest of the university that Moody-Adams step down immediately. Bollinger has yet to name an interim dean, although he said he will do so shortly.
Elmhurst College asks LGBT Applicants to Identify Themselves
Students applying to college have a lot of questions to answer and boxes to check on their applications, and for Elmhurst College applicants this fall, they will have one more box to check. This week, the school became the first in the nation to ask to indicate their sexual orientation on their application. While answering the question is optional, Elmhurst Dean of Admissions Gary Rold said the school's goal is to increase diversity. Sexual orientation, Rold said, "may not be race and religion but it’s an important part of who they are."
Bethany College Golf Team Strips, Gets Suspended
Your parents have probably told you to be careful about what you post on Facebook - something that the Bethany College golf team is learning the hard way this week. "A bit of fun with the lads" turned into a whole lot of trouble for senior Jac Hiscock and his teammates when they posted a photo of the team posed naked with strategically placed golf items covering their privates. Though they didn't violate athletic regulations, officials from the Lutheran school suspended the team from three upcoming tournaments and made the students take the photo down. The team appealed the decision and is awaiting officials' final decision.
Ferris Bueller's Kids Could Be College Freshmen (and other facts about the Class of 2015)
For incoming college freshmen, the Communist Party has never been the ruling party in Russia, Sears has never been a catalog, and life has always been like a box of chocolate. At least, so says Beloit College, which just released its annual "Mindset List" for the Class of 2015. Started in 1998, the list was created to "reflect the world view of entering first year students." The Class of 2015 was born in 1993 - which means Ferris Bueller could be their father, Amazon has always been more than just a river, and men have always been from Mars.
Selena Gomez Skipping College - For Now
Although some young celebrities have blazed the college trail, one teen star is saying no to college - at least, for now. With her music, television and film career skyrocketing, Disney star Selena Gomez announced this week that she will not be going to college. The teen sensation said that while she is "always open" to attending college, she has elected to hold off for now and continue working. "At the moment I'm definitely enjoying where I'm at right now and having a great time touring and focusing on that," she said.