A little help from my friends..?

Okay.. so I am thinking about writing the next issue (August) of the little newsletter that I do for my office – which in the past has focused on things like how the US News rankings are computed, how “competitive” our admissions really are, and what a graduation rate is (and isn’t) – on Facebook. Specifically on why our faculty and administrators need to get over their fear of it and start using it to connect to our students. This is, admittedly, a bit of a stretch for a newsletter from an institutional research office, but I’m thinking that if I start by talking about how many of our students use Facebook already and talk about the tools Facebook offers for reaching said students (flyers and surveys immediately come to mind, but there are also the events and groups), it might be close enough. Might being the key word there.

This is where you come in, especially those of you in academia yourselves – is this something you’d expect not be all “WTF?!” about if your institutional research office did? (Holy bad grammar, Batman! *sigh* Yeah.. I’m a numbers person; the words.. sometimes they abandon me in protest.)

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2 thoughts on “A little help from my friends..?

  1. mamacate says:

    Well, I’d either be sure to couch it in research (I believe there is some–I can ask a colleague from UMass who has done some research on it, but you could look for Williams and Kolek in student life pubs–they might have only done conference papers, though). Either that, or get buy-in from a senior admin person. Just years of higher ed political experience talking.

    Did you see I joined “too old to be on facebook?” I was going to start it if it didn’t already exist.

    My IR office has been quite active in exploring facebook, with my student worker as our indigenous interlocutor.

  2. judithgay says:

    I feel about Facebook the same way I feel about text messaging: Grudging acceptance. I will likely never do either, but I have accepted that both are essential parts of the communication network now being used by (mostly) people younger than me. I think that using Facebook is an inspired idea for you- as long as everyone on Facebook doesn’t suddenly abandon ship and go to the Next Big Thing, like they did when Myspace gave way to Facebook.

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