Examining the UK higher education sector through the network of institutional accounts on Twitter
Web link mining has been previously used as a way of gaining insight into how the Internet may be replicating or reshaping connections between institutions within the higher education sector. Institutions are increasingly active on social media platforms, and these connections have not been studied. This paper presents an exploratory analysis of the network of UK higher education institutional accounts on Twitter. All U.K. institutions have a presence. Standing in recent university rankings is found to be a significant predictor of several network metrics. In examining the communities present within the network, a combination of ranking and geolocation play a role. Analysis of a sample of tweets which mention more than one U.K. higher education institution provides an indication of why the topics of tweets would reinforce prestige and location in the network structure.
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