Can Online Posts Affect College Admissions?

Nov 13, 2013 7:49 PM

We've been warned many times about the dangers of social media. Now high school students are being told that what they post online could affect their college admissions.

A new study shows that online posts by high school students can possibly affect the chances of getting into college. An annual survey by Kaplan Test Prep shows that 29% of college admission officers have Googled an applicant and 31% have looked at a Facebook page.

Officials at Chico State say that this isn't something they do. "Actually, this is news to me. I've never actually heard of the procedure. Here at Chico State, I can assure anybody that we don't do that," said Allan Bee, Director for the Office of Admissions at Chico State University. The admissions office uses other ways to measure a student’s eligibility. "We admit students based on objective criteria. We look at transcripts, we look at GPA, we look at test scores, and that's how we make our decision," said Bee.

High school students we spoke with say they had no idea some colleges were looking at their online posts, but they know that inappropriate posts can be damaging to their future. "It just makes you think about doing something right or wrong to not get you into the college that you want to be in or go to," said Brandon Cotanay, Sophmore at Pleasant Valley High School. Pleasant Valley Senior Ian Wright agreed saying “I think students should be more aware that what they put on Facebook directly could impact how it's going to further them in their lives."

As far as Chico State, they say they're not going to be looking at social media for admissions purposes any time soon. “As a public university, I don't see that ever happening here and we certainly don't have enough resources to consider these kinds of things," said Bee.

This is just another reason that you should always think twice before posting anything online. You never know who's looking at it.


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