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The role of social media in recruiting international students

The role of social media in recruiting international students

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Over the past 18 years, the number of students attending universities in other countries has skyrocketed, from 2 million in 2000 to 5.6 million in 2018.

"(UNESCO, 2023)"This data demonstrates the worldwide interest in obtaining a university education. Taking into account demographic trends, the OECD predicts that the rate of internationalization will reach 8 million by 2025 (Banjong & Olson, 2016).

As the number of universities around the world continues to expand rapidly, each one must find its own way to stand out from the crowd and convey this distinction to its constituents (Wit & Merkx, 2012).In recent years, colleges and universities have increasingly relied on social media to engage with and retain students. In order to effectively implement the institution's brand, social media might be a useful tool (Nevzat, Yilmaz, Tanova, & Hasan, 2016).

Due to the proliferation of the internet, people are increasingly turning to social media for information about schools, degree programs, and even the experiences of recent graduates from schools that pique their interest (Gray, Shyan Fam, & Llanes, 2003; Shields & Peruta, 2019).

Prospective and current students alike use social media to network with one another, keep up with school news, and find resources (Shields & Peruta, 2019). Chugh (2012) defines social media as a "online community of users who share a common interest in forming and using a network to further their own goals"Colleges and universities can promote events, suggest seminars and training, streamline conferences, and share useful information by utilizing these networked platforms.

Connecting with customers, promoting products online, and addressing customer complaints are just few of the many uses for social media in various sectors. The educational sector has embraced online communities all across the world. In higher education, social media can be utilized for group projects including content creation, sharing, and communication. Given the growing popularity and prevalence of social media among today's college and university students, it's important for educational institutions to understand the new channels of influence they're opening up through social media. According to the some research, there has been a growing interest in the study of how students use online networks and how prospective students use online platforms to get admission to higher education.

Prospective students can benefit from participating in online networks (e.g., Facebook, Instagram, etc.) by searching for freely available evidence about educational institutions, comparing and analyzing comments from other potential applicants and former students, and assessing endorsements from professionals. The way in which people disseminate their own expertise and knowledge has shifted because of the communicative character of social media.


Banjong, D. N., & Olson, M. R. (2016). Issues and Trends of International Students in the United States. International Journal of education, 4(1), 1-14

 Brendan J. & Gray, K. S. (2003). Branding universities in Asian markets. Journal of Product & Brand Management, 12 (2), 1061-1081.

Chugh, R.(2012). Social Media for Tertiary Education. Encyclopedia of Education and Information Technologies.

Nevzat, R., Amca, Y., Tanova, C., Hasan,Y. (2019). Role of Social Media Community in Strengthening Trust. Computers in Human Behavior, 65, 550-559.

Shields, A. B., & Peruta, &. A. (2019). Social media and the university decision. Do prospective students really care? Journal of Marketing for Higher Education. 29(1), 67-83

UNESCO (2023). Accessed online (March 2023) through

Wit, H. D., & Merkx, G. (2012). The history of internalization of higher education. The SAGE handbook of international higher education.