Infographic: Is Social Media Ruining Students?

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Facebook is an enormous social network currently closing in on 700 million users, but it started on college campuses and that's where it still rules. About 96 percent of students use the site, according to Online Education, an Internet database that serves as a resource for prospective students. What effect has it had on them and their studies?

"In the end, the question isn't so much whether Facebook makes you a better student -- it's how can you best manage its presence in your life and studies," Peter Pachal wrote at PC magazine. "After all, the social network has become so integrated into student life, it's almost a prerequisite. Students can't just shut it off, but they can find its proper place in between textbooks and dorm rooms."

Here, some of our favorite facts and figures from the infographic:

  • Facebook users are twice as likely to be more involved in campus activities.
  • Social media users are twice as likely to feel popular.
  • Nearly half -- 48 percent -- of users think that they are sadder than their friends.
  • "Facebook addiction" is searched 350 times more often than "cigarette addiction." 
  • Updating Facebook profiles boosts students' self-esteem more than looking in a mirror.
  • 85 percent of students who use Facebook work less than five hours each week, whereas 80 percent of students who don't use Facebook work more than 16 hours each week.

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Nicholas Jackson is a former associate editor at The Atlantic.

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