5 new ways students are choosing their colleges and universities

Survey reveals social choosing habits of graduating high school students; gives advice to colleges and universities

students-choose-collegeGone are the days when students chose their postsecondary education institution based off of news reports or annual publications. In this mobile-enabled culture, today’s students are redefining how colleges and universities should market their offerings by using diverse online resources and social media word-of-mouth.

The 2014 Social Admissions Report, a survey of college-bound high school students, is designed to identify trends in digital, social, and mobile tools represented in a student’s college search and enrollment process.

“Year after year new tools are created to help us organize, share and collaborate online,” according to Uversity—a platform for social networking and higher education. “Inevitably when these tools hit the mainstream the debate begins as to the impact of these networks on the college search and recruitment process. Through thousands of student surveys and national focus groups, the Zinch, Chegg and Uversity teams have collaborated to complete the third installment of The Social Admissions Report.”

The report discusses trends in student use of social media and other digital tools throughout their college search and admissions process; how students perceive their online identity relative to online expression engines; and how the latest digital trends, such as mobile, impact a student’s impression of an institution.

Survey invitations were eMailed to Zinch and College Prowler high school students, includes data from 2012-13, and the 1,800 surveys completed include students that graduated in 2012-13 (40 percent) and students that will graduate in 2014-15 (60 percent).

Notable findings in the report include five ways students are redefining their college and university selection process, as well as key actions postsecondary institutions should take to help their student recruitment process:

(Next page: 5 ways students are choosing colleges and universities)

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The hottest education topics on Pinterest

The social media site Pinterest can and should be used as a classroom resource

pinterest logoThe social media site Pinterest is perhaps best known as a hub for swapping recipes, wedding planning tips, and “do-it-yourself” ideas. But as technological innovations and education intersect more and more, could Pinterest also be used as a classroom resource?

As it turns out, the the answer is yes.

There is a thriving community of educators and education companies pinning to their hearts’ desires. Pinterest being what it is, there is certainly a hodgepodge of organizational and decorating tips (like this cute DIY planter) for the classroom. But if you look beyond this jumble of arts and crafts, there are legitimate educational resources being pinned – sometimes, entire boards.

Much of this content seems destined for teachers to use, because it is usually created by teachers rather than administrators, and is often pinned to their personal accounts. But Pinterest does offer a wider range of ed-tech tools, from individual pins linked to mobile technology articles to entire Pinterest accounts run by school districts.

(Next page: Educational apps, STEM and Common Core)

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Up to $3K for math projects

This is a new educational program that asks teachers to turn the idea of $1 billion into a math assignment for a chance to win a $3,000 grant. H&R Block is awarding a $50 gift card to the first 50 qualified entries.

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12 Questions to Ask When Choosing a Tablet or Laptop Cart

blackbox200Digital learning devices support game- and project-based learning, create a collaborative environment, and can improve the quality of teaching and learning. But to realize these benefits, the devices must be kept safe, secure, and ready to go at a moment’s notice. Committing to the right cart solution for your school’s tablets, laptops, netbooks, or eReaders is an important decision; here are a dozen key questions to help you.

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$2K awards for school arts and culture

Target funds in-school arts programs that enhance students’ classroom curricula by bringing the arts and cultural experiences to schools, such as in-school performances, artist-in-residency programs and workshops in schools.

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$5K for innovative STEM teachers

Wanted: Classroom Innovators! Toshiba America Foundation accepts applications from teachers who are passionate about making science and mathematics more engaging for their students.

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How Top-Notch Support Has Helped Make This 1-to-1 Program a Success

LenovoAMDHershey Public Schools in central Nebraska launched a “one-to-one” learning initiative in 2007 to provide a laptop to every high school student. Learn why the district chose Lenovo notebooks with AMD processors, supplied by GovConnection—and why these choices have had a big impact on the program’s success.

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How One School District Saved $300K on High-End Computers

crucialFlorida’s Collier County School District needed 1,150 high-end PCs for its career and technology classes, but pre-built systems were too expensive. Learn how Collier’s technology department built their own PCs using solid-state drives from Crucial, a GovConnection partner—getting the fast performance they needed and saving $300,000 in the process.

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