News & Analysis

LinkedIn wants a portion of the high school market, launching new tool for students to find universities

- October 2, 2014 2 MIN READ

LinkedIn has long been the ideal platform for professionals to network and spruik their abilities, but the social network for professionals has today launched something different: a set of new tools that will act as what many of us have long known as the school careers adviser.

In a bid to retain its younger user base, LinkedIn has added Decision Boards, University Outcome Rankings and University Finder to their service. These new tools will allow students to find information on what courses to study and where to apply for them, as well as linking students to people who can provide them with sound advice on their respective choices.

The Decision Boards feature is a tool that acts as a cross between Twitter and a Q&A panel. It lets the user reach out to their network as well as others for advice on things such as the best university to attend or what subjects to take. The innovative part of this tool is that it also allows students to meet other students in the same course even before it begins by tagging the university or college name in their question. This not only makes transition into tertiary education easier for students but also has the ability to tap into the advantages of collective learning that would traditionally take months to develop amongst new students.

The University Outcome Rankings feature is a data analytics tool that will scan LinkedIn’s vast database of alumni profiles to allow users to see a ranking of how successful a particular university or college has been in producing candidates that particular career field. This a vital tool when it comes to students who are thinking of moving interstate or making huge commitments towards their studies. One issue however is that the ranking is only based on existing LinkedIn users which could misrepresent certain geographical areas with decent schools.

The University Finder tool is a feature that helps look for the University that is best suited to the user’s profile. The tool considers details such as your career aspirations, where you would like to work one day and matches up those parameters with the compatible tertiary institution.

These new tools will be free for anyone to use on LinkedIn and could even potentially help the company build a robust relationship with the Australian university community. This is especially important at a time when government funding is being cut and local universities are becoming more reliant on foreign students to survive, leaving little room for local students to be complacent with their choices.

The full list of new features can be found here and you must be logged into LinkedIn to view them.