Student Generated Content: Part One

This is the first post in a series on integrating student-generated content into communications, particularly in social platforms.

What is Student Generated Content?

Student Generated Content is photos, videos, podcasts, tweets, blog posts and more supplied by current students that are intended to enhance and augment your communications. You can implement student content in a variety of ways. The key is to integrate student-generated content into your overall communications strategy – not tack it on to a pre-existing approach.

In the coming weeks in this space, you’ll see a series of blog posts on working with students. I’ll cover topics including identifying, training, compensating and managing student content creators, examples of projects you should and should not assign to students, and provide some examples of institutions and organizations with great student content.

To kick things off, here’s a brief look at some of the pros and cons of working with students to create content for your social platforms.


  • Students are a low cost workforce. You can employ a team of student content creators for less money than professionals.
  • Students can speak first hand about life on campus – they know your culture and community better than anyone.
  • Alumni, prospectives and parents love to hear from students; give your audiences a window into the student experience.


  • Students are students first! They have midterms, labs, projects, papers and more at any given time. Your content deadline may not be the highest thing on their priority list.
  • Students are on an academic calendar. Summer, spring break and winter break mean time off for them and a content drought for you.
  • They require a significant amount of up-front direction and management. Ultimately, though, this leads to a working relationship built on trust and a strong fundamental understanding of your institutional voice, strategy and goals.

Ready to take the plunge? Stay tuned for more in the coming weeks.


5 Responses to Student Generated Content: Part One

  1. While there’s nothing more authentic than a student’s perspective, it’s great that you point out the biggest thing to remember: Students are students first. And as such, the relationship is always going to be different than that of a traditional employer-employee.

    Looking forward to the rest of the series.

  2. Elizabeth Allen says:

    Thanks Patrick! Stay tuned…

  3. THANK YOU for doing this series! I’ve been trying to find more info on this exact topic, without much luck. Looking forward to your next post!

    • Elizabeth Allen says:

      Thanks Davina – I hope you’ll find this info useful. And please do leave comments with any words of wisdom you may have!

  4. Pingback: Using students for creative content | RETHINK ED COMM

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