Social Media and Student Success

The average person checks Facebook 14 times a day, according to researcher IDT. We live in a connected world. Success lives within these networks through supportive relationships. The ties between parents and college age children are stronger than ever, thanks to social media, chatting and texting.

There is a correlation between student success and parental involvement, but many colleges and universities have yet to solve the parent problem. Organizations that adapt to a mobile and social environment stand to gain influence over constituents, whether they are employees at a company or students at a university.

First generation students, in particular, were found to have more success in higher ed when they are fluent in social networks, according to research funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and carried out by researchers at the University of Michigan and Michigan State University.

Solving problems like access to information, handling emotional support and managing expectations are easier due to the online presence of family and friends.

In the group of 500 Michigan students surveyed, 12 percent of those who used social media to get answers about the college application process were better able to apply to colleges. The social media savvy students were 2.3 times more confident in their ability to succeed in school than students without online social support.

These stats suggest that higher ed needs more ways to help students connect with their friend and family networks. Apps that make the connection easier are worth exploring.