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How Colleges and Universities Use Instagram

(Pi Day at MIT)

Universities and colleges around the nation are using Instagram. They’ve found a few ways to take advantage of this every-growing platform, so I thought I’d give you a tour of higher education instagramming. These methods are not only for main university accounts, but can be used by specific departments, labs, programs, and offices. Ways to spice up your department’s Instagram account:

Show a different point of view

Look back on history

Show off the campus

Show off students

Show off alumni/ae

Have fun

Start a hashtag

Spotlight others’ photos (with permission)

Challenge your followers

Share a quotation

Celebrate special days

Focus on the details

Capture an extraordinary moment

P.S. Sometimes it’s just creepy how similar some universities are. 


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  1. Thanks for sharing some of the @uofmichigan photos! This is a great article!

  2. gus says:

    this is a great list. at hopkins, we also worked with the Instagram API to create our “Hubstagram” feature on our news site. see: (UGC FTW!)

  3. KT says:

    Some good examples here! I hadn’t used Instagram but it looks like a fine tool to check out and start using.

  4. It is an expert review on learning how to use instagram in a pretty beneficial way. I think that it can surely teach anyone to share his stuff in a perfect way.

  5. Jerry says:

    Question: do these colleges have “college phones” to load Instagram onto that device or are individuals loading onto their personal phones?

    • hatch_s says:

      Hi Jerry, it depends on the college. An iPhone with a data plan isn’t always necessary (depending on the WiFi situation and depending on if the social media manager travels to away games and such). You could buy the most recent iPod or iPad and manage an Instagram feed for your college. – Stephanie

  6. Picos Kaunas says:

    I am sad, but in Lithuanian universities and colleges we do not use any instagram like prehistorical people :(