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Keep it PG: Medical school admissions officers checking applicants' Facebook pages

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Posted: Wednesday, October 30, 2013 1:13 am

Zachary Field knows better than to post an inappropriate photo on Facebook.

Although the 21-year-old UF biology senior and medical school candidate thinks schools don’t have time to scroll through applicants’ Facebook pages, he plays it safe.

“Whether you’re a business major or you want to go to general school or medical school, to be in the professional world, it’s just kind of common sense now to keep your Facebook clean,” he said.

A Kaplan survey of medical school admissions officers released last week found 32 percent of admissions officers have used Google to learn more about an applicant. Additionally, 22 percent visited an applicant’s social networking sites, and of those, 42 percent found something that negatively impacted an applicant’s chances of acceptance.

Owen Farcy, director of MCAT 2015 for Kaplan Test Prep, said medical schools haven’t embraced technology too much. Regardless, he said, students should know admissions officers are paying attention.

UF social media specialist Bruce Floyd said the best rule of thumb is to ask if a picture or status is appropriate for a grandmother’s eyes.

A version of this story ran on page 1 on 10/30/2013 under the headline "Facebook needs to make grade for medical school applicants"

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