Recently, there has been an increasing interest in the issues related to screening college applicants. Nowadays, an applicant’s social media profile is used to generate some background information about a student’s social interactions and main interests. Attitudes towards this matter differ as some people entirely oppose such actions that are performed by college administrations. However, it is a simple truth that admission officers prefer to monitor the students’ profiles due to the reason that they believe they can find something that appears to be intolerable in college life in particular. Although some special cases suggest that students’ profiles should be monitored in order to avert problems, it is highly unwarrantable to address the underlying issues in such a way, thus interfering with students’ life and posing a challenge to the perception of democracy.
Interestingly, colleges in the United States of America are prone to deliberately take advantage of their applicants’ social media webpages such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram profiles. In her article “They Loved Your G.P.A. Then They Saw Your Tweets”, Singer presents this problem as crucial in recent applications. She assumes that admission officers aim at clarifying all the possible information about a student by means of contemplating his/her personal relationships, friendships, and attitudes to the outside world. Such individual approaches are inadmissible because they can induce unreasonable preconceptions and lead to flat refusals concerning students’ applications to colleges. The ambiguous nature of photographs can provoke numerous misunderstandings and foregone conclusions that prevent a student from receiving higher education. Thus, a Facebook page can pose a threat to the student’s entry.
Seemingly, the above-mentioned screening from the perspective of college administration and the leading conclusions infringe upon the main rule of democracy that allows people to express themselves. In today’s world, democracy is built upon the liberty of speech. As a giant of social media, it is evident that Facebook (or any other means of virtual interactions) impresses people from all walks of life due to the reason that it facilitates the process of communication as well as makes it more colorful. Nowadays, virtual reality is extremely popular. One click and a person is the master of communication; they can advance an opinion without being afraid of someone’s reaction, express their thanks, show displeasure, and, eventually, avoid disagreeable moments. However, one cannot be a hundred-percent-sure about the privacy and reliability. According to Singer,
As certain high school seniors work meticulously this month to finish their early applications to colleges, some may not realize that comments they casually make online could negatively affect their prospects.
Unfortunately, a giant cannot guarantee that your matters are hold in secret. Nowadays, social media is not the right option to express outrage or any other strong feelings, especially if there is a chance to apply for colleges or vacancies.
The monitoring of the school seniors’ web pages is unnecessary due to the reason that application forms provide all the fundamental and decisive information that is needed for the entry. The conclusions should be made only on the basis of application forms and letters that seem to be indispensable parts of college entries. Undoubtedly, an admission officer cannot make decisions if he/she is guided by the impressions that result from social media profiles. The justification for unsuitable comments or the outbursts of unpredictable reactions consists in different age periods that students have to overcome. Every parent knows that there are certain developmental milestones peculiar to the age periods. They can manifest themselves in the comments on discussions, reactions to particular events and incidents, being rather incongruent in nature. These facts presuppose that admission officers can interpret the social media pages as disruptive or form the wrong kinds of attitudes to the applicants. Singer draws the reader’s attention to the impulsiveness of typical teenagers that can shape misguided and false opinions about them. Therefore, as there are no formal policies that envisage screening or monitoring applicants’ profiles on the Internet, admission officers should pay no attention to the students’ interpretation of some problems and reaction to them on the photographs or videos. It is worth mentioning that nowadays social media exerts an impact even on the entries to colleges. However, they are not powerful sources of information when it comes to dealing with the applicants.
Bearing in mind the previous points, admission officers are prone to monitor applicants’ social media profiles, paying special attention to the school seniors’ attitudes to life. The current essay suggests that such an approach should not be followed in cases when students apply for college due to its inappropriateness in college settings. Apart from the general interpretation of inappropriateness, it is reasonable to state that monitoring may lead to preconceptions and foregone conclusions, thus affecting the applicant’s further education. Screening is intolerable from the perspective of democratic views on the society and poses a threat to the liberty of speech. Despite the fact that admission officers can recap some information from social media profiles, they can easily misinterpret it due to the teenage impulsiveness as a developmental milestone. Thus, monitoring of social media profiles should not be practiced in any college as there are other relevant ways to obtain information.