Social Media Usage for Investigators
Feinberg's Office of Communications works closely with faculty, staff and students to bring ideas to the public via social media. Official Feinberg pages are maintained for a variety of social media channels, including Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn and Facebook. See a list of official medical school social media accounts.
Scientists and academics often develop and maintain individual public social media profiles outside official university profiles as a means to educate the public about science, build a network of like-minded scholars and stay connected. The medical school encourages faculty, staff and students to engage in social media, and has created a set of guiding principles to raise awareness of current best practices and help members of the Feinberg community participate within social media channels.
Additionally, Feinberg investigators may be interested in joining the following networks:
- LinkedIn Feinberg Research Office Group (closed group)
- Northwestern University Yammer (closed group)
Benefits of Social Media Use
- Conveniently receive breaking news on higher education and research funding. Numerous funding agencies such as NSF, NIHforfunding and HHMINews use Twitter to share news and funding opportunities and also look for updates about their funded work. Additionally, the Chronicle of Higher Education posts regularly about policies and news affecting higher education.
- Connect with investigators in your field or in your geographic area to share ideas and relevant information. Whether it's connecting on Twitter about an upcoming conference, sharing data or using LinkedIn to network with current and former colleagues and potential students or job seekers, social media gives you the power to tap into scientific minds around the globe for advice/help/knowledge/collaboration.
- Share ideas and progress with the general public. Blogs, microblogs, podcasts and more can help translate knowledge without the gatekeeper of traditional media. Whether you share findings via a five-paragraph blog post or a short tweet, your research has the potential to reach audiences in the U.S. and abroad.
- Engage with journalists and writers covering your area of research. As newsrooms have shrunk, less funding exists for press to travel to campuses and conferences. However, most journalists now maintain social profiles and are willing to engage with sources online.
- Converse with the next generation of scientists. According to the Pew Internet and American Life Project, millennials are the only generation that thinks technology makes people closer together rather than isolated, and 86 percent of millennials who attend or have attended college identify themselves as social network users.