Community colleges have seen tremendous growth and change over the last 114 years. Today, community colleges encompass 1,123 schools, with some community colleges as small as 1,000 students and others serve more than 100,000 students. Nearly 12.4 million students are enrolled in America’s community colleges, with nearly two-thirds of the students attending part-time and the average age of students is 28 (American Association of Community Colleges, 2015).
Community colleges are significant contributors in the teaching and training of students who are of nontraditional age for the typical college student, low income, and academically underprepared. In spite of greater access to admission, community colleges are having difficulty graduating students. Many of the tried approaches to increase completion rates at the community colleges center on concepts of engagement. In other words, how do community colleges go about improving the engagement of student, faculty as well as boost interactions outside of the organization (Kuh, Kinzie, Schuh, & Whitt, 2010)? The Community College Survey of Student Engagement in 2009 discovered with increased “use of social networking tools to communicate with other students, instructors, and college staff regarding coursework and other academic purposes, the higher student’s level of engagement” (Center for Community College Student Engagement [CCSSE], 2009). Social media is a possible key to improving student engagement due to the capability to associate with many students in a fairly brief period of time.
In spite of the extensive use of social media, research has not studied the benefits of its use in the four year college and university environments and less is known its use in communi...
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...t with faculty and staff as well as with with peers for both academic and nonacademic purposes. The results of this behavior found higher levels of measured student engagement (CCCSE, 2009). In a survey conducted by Rios-Aguilar et al. (2012) community colleges nationwide were asked about their use of social media and the value it would have for their colleges. The survey showed the use of social media as a one-way communication tool with the vast majority using Facebook and Twitter to send messages to students. The social media tools were utilized for academic and non-academic purposes such as upcoming events, deadlines, alerts and emergencies.
Another important use of social media in community colleges found in the Aguilar et al. (2012) study was the use of social media for public relations activities, recruitment, marketing, or managing the college’s brand image
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