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College prep experts give free tips on Twitter chats

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For parents and students searching for college prep information, Twitter chats offer easy access to experts and their tips for free. Twitter chats are easy to find and cost nothing to join. Best of all, families may participate at home and in their slippers!

Experts
College admission representatives, financial aid officers, college counselors, test prep specialists, alumni, and others with insider knowledge about every aspect of higher education join the conversation on Twitter chats.

Parents and students
Parents and students may participate at their comfort level from listening quietly to actively engaging in the dialogue. They can ask questions, make comments, retweet, favorite and reply to experts and other participants.

Twitter chats
Twitter chats are open online forums on a topic of interest such as college search, admission or cost. A moderator usually hosts and an expert guest is often featured to answer questions and give advice. However, other expert participants supplement the information with their own insights. Often links to helpful sites, blogs and articles are suggested by participants sharing experiences and expertise.

Twitter chats use a hashtag “#” to denote the chat such as #CampusChat (Wednesdays 9 p.m. ET), #CollegeChat (Tuesdays 9 p.m. ET), and #CollegeCash (Thursdays 8 p.m. ET). Finding more college prep relevant chats is easy. Search for “college bound chats” or “education chats.”

Using “CampusChat as an example, here are five tips to get the college-bound and their parents chatting:

1. Sign-in to Twitter or sign-up for a free Twitter account here.

2. Type the chat’s name, for example “#CampusChat" into the search bar at the top right of the screen when the chat starts.

3. Click on "All" to see all the #CampusChat tweets.

4. When the chat starts, see the whole #CampusChat conversation, ask a question, respond, and participate (see above about comfort level of participation). Be sure to use the hashtag #CampusChat to tweet during the chat. That way everyone participating in the chat will be able to see it.

5. There are free sites like Hootsuite, TweetChat and TweetDeck many use to more easily manage their social media interactions. The commenting pace can be swift but that’s part of the fun.

To receive notification about future articles of concern to parents of the college-bound, click on "Subscribe" near the above photos and go to POCSmom’s website and blog. Connect via Twitter and in the comments section about college prep experts give free tips on Twitter chats.

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