Apparently, exploring social media sites has become an important part of the college admissions process.  According to a report in the Chicago Tribune on a survey by Kaplan Test Prep, admissions folks are now checking Facebook, Instagram, and other popular online hangouts in record numbers to see what applicants are up to.

Forty percent of the nearly 400 college admissions officers surveyed by Kaplan reportedly said they use social media sites to flesh out the profiles of candidates, though they add that they are not searching for negatives.  Rather, they seek to verify or discover the varied facets of the students, as presented in their applications.

It would not be difficult to imagine that the portrait that emerges on social media could end up being the tip factor that determines if the student's file ends up in the "accept" or "reject" pile.

The caveat for applicants, of course, is using common sense when using social media.  Candidates might want to consider the effect that an unbecoming, inappropriate, or negative image - via pictures or comments, for example - might have on the chances to be admitted.

For more information, see the story from The Chicago Tribune - here