Why students should have a Twitter account

Due to the popularity of Twitter, one would assume that EVERY student has a Twitter account right? Wrong! I come across students everyday who make comments like “Twitter is just another Facebook. Why do I need an account?” Or one of my favorites, “I’m just suppose to follow and read tweets. This is pointless.” This lead me to thinking, “Why should students have a Twitter account?”

Photo credit: 10ch

Photo credit: 10ch

Below is a list of reasons I’ve compiled to answer that question, along with reasons submitted via Twitter.

  1. Connections. This is the most obvious as Twitter is a social networking site. The idea is that you will connect with others that have the same interest as you.
  2. To Learn. Learn about the business you wish to enter. Listen to what others are saying about an organization or career path.
  3. Self-promotion. If you are good at something (i.e. strong writer, producing YouTube videos, etc.) and want to share it with others, Twitter can help with that.  Twitter is also an ideal platform to let others know if you are looking for an internship or job. However, this could be a double-edge sword, so be cautious of how you promote yourself.
  4. Research. What does the competition for the job market look like? Are there skill sets you need to acquire prior to graduation to remain current in your desired field?
  5. Brevity. You must get your meaning across in 140 characters. Twitter will force you to be concise. That’s not a bad habit.
  6. Stay current. What are the trends in your area of interest? What’s the talk around the water cooler?
  7. Access. Your new found connections come with access to a plethora of information. People are willing to help, even if that means just pointing you in the right direction.

What are some additional reasons you believe students should have a Twitter account? Why do you (or don’t you) have a Twitter account?

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6 Comments

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6 responses to “Why students should have a Twitter account

  1. Jennifer

    I totally agree! I’m an undergrad looking at student affairs in higher education and I have made numerous professional connections across the country through twitter, and more specifically, #sachat, a group of Student affairs professionals that get together on twitter on Thursdays to discuss various topics within the profession. Professionals on twitter not only connect me with #sachat, but my current institution, so when they meet someone who works at my college, they ask if they know me, building my connections within my own campus community.

  2. Thanks for this post; this semester, I required students in one of my classes to create a Twitter account and then encouraged them to use it in conjunction with our class account. Not to toot my own horn too loudly but, if people are interested, here’s a blog post about the initial set-up and the ideas behind doing this: http://kohenari.tumblr.com/post/208097878/teaching-with-twitter

    • uandrews

      Thank you for sharing the link to your blog post concerning your class. I just begin integrating social media into my classes this semester, so I understand your reserve. As for our students, they’ll eventually come around. I just hope they don’t wait too long.

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  4. I like the comment about Brevity… that 140 characters will teach you to be concise. I’ve never thought of it that way before.

    • uandrews

      Thanks for commenting Kacie.
      Brevity was one of the first challenges I experienced with Twitter. I think it’s an issue that’s more common than people think. The issue now is to not turn Twitter into several text messages 🙂