To publish or no longer to submit: Internet pointers for university hopefuls


Google yourself. Curate your online images. As one non-public excessive college, the well-known rule of thumb advises its students: Don’t publish something you would not want your grandmother to peer.

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Guidance counselors have warned university applicants for years to thoughts their social media posts; however, they can now cite an excessive-profile example at Harvard University, which revoked admission to ten students for offensive Facebook posts.

Colleges hardly ever revoke admission for online offenses, but social media’s position in the college admission system is a growing reality. Here are a few professionals’ tips on what to publish — and no longer put up — if you’re looking to get into college.

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Research from Kaplan Test Prep indicates online scrutiny of university applicants is increasing. Of 365 admissions officials surveyed, 35 percent said they look at Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and other social media sites to research extra about candidates, in step with a ballot released in February. Kaplan Test Prep has performed annual surveys on the account that 2008, whilst 10 percent of admissions officers said they checked candidates’ social media pages.

The Harvard case highlights that “admissions does not always give up on the attractiveness letter,” says Yariv Alpher, government director of research for Kaplan, the test-practice business enterprise.

The case covered jokes about the Holocaust and sexual assault shared on a private Facebook institution for incoming Harvard inexperienced persons, in line with The Harvard Crimson, which broke the news earlier this month. Harvard has declined to comment but says it tells new college students that admission offers may be withdrawn if their behavior calls into query their adulthood or moral person.


San Francisco University High School seniors are given a caution every fall to ease up their online presence — and nix any posts they would not show Grandma, said Jon Reider, director of college counseling on the elite personal school.

Colgate University admissions officers do not mechanically cruise potential college students’ social media websites, says dean of admissions Gary L. Ross.

“However, there are occasions, very hardly ever, had been something is probably brought to our attention, and it’d be foolish for us if the matter is extreme enough, now not to test that out,” Ross said.

He referred to a case from a few years ago in which a pupil bragged on social media that she applied early to Colgate and every other institution, which violates an agreement students sign to use early to only one faculty.

“That turned into introduced to our interest. I changed into in touch with the alternative dean of admission, and we both agreed it violated each institution’s rules, and the student become denied at both.”

Make sure your email deal with is appropriate, says Nancy Beane, companion director of university counseling at The Westminster Schools in Atlanta and president of the National Association for College Admission Counseling.

Silly, vulgar, or otherwise unprofessional usernames would possibly look precise to teens; however, ship the incorrect message to adults.

The Princeton Review gives university candidates social media guidelines and “Google your self” to see what turns up.

“Maybe you’ve got made a comment on a weblog that you’d as a substitute now not have shown up, or a friend has tagged you in an unflattering photograph,” Princeton Review says in a tip sheet on its internet site.

It also advises students to test their privateness settings to understand what can be visible publicly and edit their online image galleries.