The VPM Blog

Social Media & Higher Ed: How Colleges are Using Vine

Posted by Katie FitzGerald on Nov 18, 2013 5:05:50 AM

What can an organization accomplish in mere seconds? It can change its trajectory with a show of hands at a board meeting, seal a deal for a new product line or attract new customers by tapping “send” on a social media message. And if it’s a university or college, it can engage prospective and current students as well as graduates through 6.5-second Vine videos. Vine, a Twitter-owned app, launched earlier this year. It gives users the ability to create short, clever looping video clips, and colleges and universities are using this social media tool to better market themselves in the educational arena.

Shining Examples

An online school has to stand out from brick-and-mortar institutions. Penn Foster College, an online provider of alternative education pathways, and its students produce memorable Vine videos (“Vines” for short) to share their impressions of the school's accredited programs. Vine is becoming vital in the effort to showcase unique learning opportunities, such as the track to become a veterinary technician, by providing prospective and current students with an inside look at the program.

Higher learning organizations are also increasing attendance at sports and non-sporting events by incorporating Vines in traditional invitation routes such as Facebook and Eventbrite. Adding a dash of video content is a great addition to more conventional invitation platforms, and Vines have more potential for engagement than just a list of RSVPs. SportTechie.com featured Chris Yandle, Director of Athletic Communications for the University of Miami Hurricanes, who uses Vine to document the progress of the football and basketball season and the excitement of college sports. Professional teams have also jumped on the band wagon, such as the New York Jets, San Francisco Giants and Oklahoma City Thunder.

Other universities that produce Vines include Bowling Green, University of Southern California, Stanford, Princeton, Cornell, Temple, Hofstra and University of New Hampshire, among many others, EdTech Magazine reports.

Other Ways Colleges are Using Vines

Vines are on their way to becoming a fixture for virtual campus tours. Some universities use the short videos to highlight different angles of the campus than those someone would normally see during an in-person visit.

Vines are also used for engaging and communicating with alumni. Many schools create Vine accounts meant to connect with alumni. Boston University already has 183 followers and 36 posts, according to EverTrue.com. Through Vine clips, schools can get nostalgia flowing with 6-second campus tours, or showcase any past or upcoming alumni event to promote attendance. These schools are even producing six-second interviews with faculty and students and promotions for special student events or giveaways.

What is next for college tech trends? Maybe Vine admission applications? Tell us your thoughts in the comments.

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Timothy Castan
Former college professor Timothy writes about the changes in education from digital learning practices.

Topics: higher ed

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