Social media for researchers
Social media are increasingly being used for purposes other than
being ‘social’. Academic networks such as LinkedIn, ResearchGate, and
Academia.edu are used by researchers around the globe to keep in contact
with colleagues and collaborators.
Research and other outputs need to be found and read, and that means
found online. If someone is looking for you as an individual researcher,
they are likely to accept what they find online as the full story. This
means that you need to know what is already out there about you,
whether you like what people see, and whether your work is actually
Goodier & Czerniewicz (2012) recommend the following four steps to managing your online presence:
- assess your current online presence (ie. Google yourself)
- decide on what you would like your online profile to be
- improve the accessibility of your outputs by making available what you can
- communicate and interact using tools such as a blog, or Twitter.
This 140-character micro-blogging site can be invaluable professionally.
As a ‘real-time information network’ it can connect you to just about
anything that sparks your interest and give you up to date access to
what is happening in your field.
Watch this video with more information about setting up a Twitter account for professional use.
is a platform where you can share research papers, monitor deep
analytics around the impact of your research, and track the research of
academics you follow. Placing your publications and presentations on
social media will make it easier for others to encounter your work, not
only because they are available on a social network, but also because
they improve the search engine optimization (SEO) of your research. A
recent study found that papers uploaded to Academia.edu receive a 73%
boost in citations over 5 years.
will help you connect with researchers who aren’t on Academia.edu, but
ResearchGate also text-mines the publications you’ve uploaded to find
out who you’ve cited; they add both researchers you’ve cited, and
researchers who have cited you, to your network, as well as colleagues
from your department and institution.
profile to improve your visibility and to network with other
researchers. LinkedIn is built for businesspeople, not academics, so you
will need to translate the traditional scholarly CV into the format on
LinkedIn. Make sure you add a photo, make your profile ‘public’, and
work hard on getting your ’Headline’ just right. In your ‘Summary’
section, provide concrete details about your research and why it
For more information on Social Media for Researchers, have a look at our list of Collaborative Tools for research, and contact your librarian.
Social media for researchers - University of Southern Queensland