Clued up! Online skills for the 21st Century student

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homeline
digital icon   Your Digital Identity

Find yourself Online
Smarten up your Digital Profile
Be Digitally Literate
Stay Safe Online

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digital icon   Digital Study Skills

Manage your studies online
Smarter Searching
Make Referencing easy
Build your Learning Network

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digital icon   Other Links

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Using this site

The middle section of each page introduces the topic and contains videos and slideshows, both from our students here at London Met and from around the web, designed to get you thinking...

In the right-hand column you'll find Practical Steps you can take and further reading and advice which you might find useful in Read more about it.

Learn more:
The eight links above cover all the aspects of this website. Please bookmark and revisit the site, as we are constantly adding new materials and information.

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Why should you smarten up your online profile?

It would be easy to quote statistics claiming that x % of employers now Google job applicants (If you don't believe it, take a look at this infographic) - but the number doing it doesn’t really matter. Just think about it – if you had your own company and were looking to take on a new person, would you Google them?

In these uncertain times, the graduate career market is extremely competitive so it’s even more important to give yourself every possible advantage you can. Making sure that you have a professional looking digital identity, being able to sell yourself through your online profile is a crucial graduate attribute, and one which you should think about as early as you can, rather than leave till the last minute. But how does this work in reality? First of all, find out what some of our students had to say...

WHAT DO YOU THINK?

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London Met students talking about their online profiles.

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But I'm still a student, I'm not thinking about my career yet...

It's a good point. If you're just beginning your studies, you may not be thinking about jobs and careers yet, let alone creating a professional online presence. But remember, most of what you do online, stays online in one form or another. The sooner you start taking care of how you appear online, the easier it will be to manage later on.

In fact, thinking about your online profile as a student is useful in other ways. As you develop your knowledge of your subject area, you will probably start to discover various useful and relevant people and sources of information online. You might start to contribute to online discussions, blog posts, twitter conversations and so on. All these interactions begin to contribute to your online profile. Imagine, if you're going for a job in marketing and your potential future employer can see that you've been blogging about your experience on your course for a year or two - that might just be the factor that tips the scales in your favour.

To get some ideas on how to start building your online profile, have a look at the slideshow below.

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'eGo' make the web work for you! (2013)
from Flea Palmer

Practical Steps you can take

· Find out what's already out there about you online. Is there anything you'd like to get rid of or change?

· Try to use a good quality photograph (head and shoulders shot), and the same name or identifier on all the sites you sign up for. This way you begin to create a coherent online identity. ('personal branding'. Horrible phrase, but quite useful really...)

· Sign up to Linked In and start creating a profile. Here's an excellent guide to Linked In created by Sue Beckingham of Sheffield Hallam University.

· There is also a very useful indepth video series
(1 - 9) form Leeds University.

· Linked In itself provides some very useful resources specifically aimed at helping students create and manage a profile on the site.

· If you don't have much in terms of professional experience, Linked In also has sections specifically for students. This article Introducing new Profile sections for students explains more.

TIP  

You don't have to know about and use all of these various social media tools. Stick to a small number, but use them well. Better to spend time productively on one or two sites, than create profiles here, there and everywhere but never follow them up...

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Read more about it

There are some very useful tips in this article from Bernadette John (King's College) about How to be boss-friendly online if you're a student.

Read some interesting student and staff experiences of digital identity issues on the excellent This is Me project from the University of Reading.

Here's an interesting post from the Digital Tattoo website maintained by the University of British Columbia all about personal branding.

Ideas by Net has a series of blog posts about 'personal branding' and the most relevant social media tools you can use to develop your online 'brand'. Lots of useful How-To guides as well.

A short article from GradHacker Managing your Digital Identity giving some useful tips on managing your online profile.

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A Linked In profile has one huge advantage - it will usually appear at the top of any Google search. It's sometimes hard to get rid of everything negative about you online, but you can at least make sure that you control your Linked In profile and know that this will be one of the first links that people will see about you.

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