With the explosion of Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat and all the others, there have been plenty of stories about how a student's social media could hurt their chances of getting into the school of their choice -- enough accounts to worry teenagers that what they post could come back to haunt them at college time.
But what teens -- and their parents -- might not be aware of is how often college admissions officers say social media positively impacts a prospective student's application, as opposed to reducing their chances of admission.
Thirty-five percent of the 365 college admissions officers who participated in a telephone survey by the educational services company Kaplan Test Prep said they check social media during the admissions process. That number is down from 40% last year but dramatically up from 10% in 2008, when Kaplan started asking the question about social media as part of its annual survey. A 30-second video illustrating the survey’s findings can be seen here.
Of those who said they look at a student's social media networks, a larger number said the review benefited the applicant: Forty-seven percent said what they found had a positive impact on prospective students versus 42% who said what they discovered had a negative impact.