Facebook Usage as Social Screening. Exploring the Approach of Admissions Officers from Management Colleges


  • Elena - Mădălina VĂTĂMĂNESCU National University of Political Studies and Public Administration
  • Ioana-Felicia CONSTANTIN Bucharest University of Economic Studies


The online social networks allow individuals to continuously create and model their self-presentations and representations. Facebook stands for a relevant example as people are given the uncensored opportunity to unfold their online selves according to their interests, preferences, goals and expectations. As a social networking site, Facebook is particularly used for reasons related to social documentation (social searching) and maintaining preexisting close relationships (bonding social capital) that imply knowledge of new information about persons met offline, and less for social exploration (social browsing) that refers to using Facebook to initiate new contacts. The extant recent literature often approach the usage of Facebook as a pre-employment screening tool with a view to select the fittest candidates for the job. Still, there are few studies which address the professors’ endeavor to use social media, in general and Facebook, in particular, as a complementary criterion when selecting future students. At this level, Facebook profiles are liable to stand for cogent indicators for the prospects’ personalities and potential, for their predispositions and professional perspectives. Starting from this point, the current research aims at investigating the approaches on the aforementioned issue of several professors from Management colleges in Romania who are in charge of settling the evaluation reference points of the college admissions procedure. The research is the more relevant so as the future graduate managers should possess some key characteristics which may be anticipated or pre-assessed based on their Facebook profile cues. In order to test the subjects’ openness to consider the implications of Facebook usage as a thorough social documentation tool, nineteen in-depth interviews were conducted. The findings show that there is a high degree of skepticism towards using Facebook as a source of reliable information.

Author Biography

Ioana-Felicia CONSTANTIN, Bucharest University of Economic Studies

Doctoral School


Andrei, A.G., and Zaiț, A. (2014). Perceptions of Warmth & Competence in Online Networking: An Experimental Analysis of a Company Launch. Review of Economic and Business Studies, 7(1), 11-29.

Bloomberg, T. (2010). Social Media Marketing GPS – Interviews with 40 marketing Leaders. Retrieved from http://www.box.net/shared/0n18eeycl4.

Brandenburg, C. (2008). The newest way to screen job applicants: A social networker's nightmare. Federal Communications Law Journal, 60(3), 597-626.

Buffardi, L.E., and Campbell, W.K. (2008). Narcissism and social networking web sites. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 34(10), 1303-1314.

Calvert, S., Pempeki, T., and Yermolayen, Y. (2009). College students' social networking experiences on Facebook. Journal of Applied Developmental Psychology, 30(1), 227– 238.

Carson, A. (2012). Employers are making good use of applicants’ social net- work profiles, but should they?. In K.J. Nahra (Ed.), The Privacy Advisor, 12(4). Retrieved from http://www.hunton.com/files/News/968fa869-9e5e-402c-9c9f-2389fb008525/Presentation/NewsAttachment/f8227e2f-f27b-4183-8c4f24d1d873ce6e/Employers_applicants_profiles. pdf.

Castells, M. (2009). Communication Power. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Dawson, E. (2011). Facebook Profiles and Usage as Indicators of Personality. Retrieved from http://digitalcommons.bryant.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1001&context=honors_appliedpsycholog.

De Luna, T.P.(2011). Performing the Face. A look at the embodied sexuality in the profile photos of selected Facebook users. 2011 International Conference on Social Science and Humanity. IPEDR, vol. 5, Singapore: IACSIT Press.

Dumitriu, D.L. (2014). The mediated live experience and the spatial reconfiguration of the sport act. Romanian Journal of Communication and Public Relations, 16(3), 35-45.

Forbes.com (2012). What College Admissions Officers Don't Like Seeing On Facebook: Vulgarity, Drinking Photos & 'Illegal Activities'. Retrieved from http://www.forbes.com/sites/kashmirhill/2012/10/12/what-college-admissions-officers-dont-like-seeing-on-facebook-profiles-vulgarity-drinking-photos-and-illegal-activities/.

Gil-Or, O., Levi-Belz, Y., and Turel, O. (2015). The “Facebook-self”: characteristics and psychological predictors of false self-presentation on Facebook. Frontiers in Psychology, 6(Article 99), 1-10.

Grove, A. (2012). Facebook, Google and College Admissions. Retrieved from http://collegeapps.about.com/od/theartofgettingaccepted/a/Facebook.htm.

Hoyer, W., and MacInnis, D. (2007). Consumer Behavior. Boston, Massachusetts: Houghton Mifflin Company.

Kramer, N.C., and Winter, S. (2008). Impression management 2.0: The relationship of self-esteem, extraversion, self-efficacy, and self-presentation within social networking sites. Journal of Media Psychology, 20(3), 106-116.

Lewis, J., and West, A. (2009). 'Friending': London-based undergraduates' experience of Facebook. New Media & Society, 11(7), 1209 – 1229.

Lory, B.E.H. (2011). Employer Use of Facebook as a Tool in Pre-Employment Screening of Applicants: Benefits and Ethical, Legal, and Privacy Implications. Master of Arts in Organizational Leadership Theses. Paper 7.

Luckerson, V. (2012). When Colleges Look Up Applicants on Facebook: The Unspoken New Admissions Test. Retrieved from http://nation.time.com/2012/11/15/when-colleges-look-up-applicants-on-facebook-the-unspoken-new-admissions-test/.

Madden, M., and Smith, A. (2010). Reputation management and social media. How people monitor their identity and search for others online. Retrieved from the Pew Internet & American Life Project Web site: http:// pewinternet.org/.

Michikyan, M., Subrahmanyam, K., and Dennis, J. (2014). Can you tell who I am? Neuroticism, extraversion, and online self-presentation among young adults. Computers in Human Behavior, 33(2014), 179–183.

Mihalcea, A.D., and Săvulescu R.M. (2013). Social Networking Sites: Guidelines for Creating New Business Opportunities through Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. Management Dynamics in the Knowledge Economy, 1(1), 39-53.

Ong et al. (2011). Narcissism, extraversion, and adolescents' self-presentation on Facebook. Personality and Individual Differences. Retrieved from http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0191886910004654.

Peluchette, J., and Karl, K. (2010). Examining students' intended image on Facebook: 'What were they thinking?!'. Journal of Education for Business, 85(1), 30-37.

Qualmann, E. (2009). Socialnomics: How Social Media Transforms the Way We Live and Do Business. New Jersey: Wiley.

Schau, H.J., and Gilly, M. (2003). We Are What We Post? Self-Presentation in Personal Web Space, Journal of Consumer Research, 30 (December), 385-404.

Seidman, I. (1998). Interviewing as qualitative research: A guide for researchers in education and the social sciences. New York: Teachers College Press.

Seto, E. (2012). Associations between Self-Reported Narcissim, Self- Esteem, and Social-Emotional Functions of Facebook. A Thesis Submitted to the Faculty of Baylor University, Retrieved from http://beardocs.baylor.edu/xmlui/bitstream/handle/2104/8322/elizabeth_seto_honorsthesis. pdf?sequence=3.

Siibak, A. (2009). Constructing the self through the photo selection - Visual impression management on social networking websites. Cyberpsychology: Journal of Psychosocial Research on Cyberspace, 3(1). Retrieved from www. cyberpsychology.eu/view.php?cisloclanku=2009061501&article=1.

Strano, M.M. (2008). User descriptions and interpretations of self-presentation through Facebook profile images. Cyberpsychology: Journal of Psychosocial Research on Cyberspace, 2(2). Retrieved from http://www.cyberpsychology.eu/view.php?cisloclanku=2008110402.

Smith, W.P., and Kidder, D.L. (2010). You’ve been tagged! (Then again, maybe not): Employers and Facebook, Business Horizons, 53(5), 491-499.

Underwood, J.D., Kerlin, L., and Farrington-Flint, L. (2011). The lies we tell and what they say about us: Using behavioural characteristics to explain Facebook activity. Computers in Human Behavior, 27(5), 1621-1626.

Vătămănescu, E.-M., and Mănuc, D. (2013). Facebook Self-(Re)Presentation and the Employers’ Practice of Using It as a Recruitment Tool. Management Dynamics in the Knowledge Economy, 1(2), 241-257.

Vătămănescu, E.-M., Andrei, A.G., Leovaridis, C., and Dumitriu, L.-D. (2015). Exploring network-based intellectual capital as a competitive advantage. An insight into European universities from developing economies. In J.G. Cegarra Navarro (Ed.), Proceedings of the 7th European Conference on Intellectual Capital ECIC 2015 (pp.350-358). Reading, UK: Academic Conferences and Publishing International Limited.

Walther, J.B. (2007). Selective self-presentation in computer-mediated communication: Hyperpersonal dimensions of technology, language, and cognition, Computers in Human Behavior, 23(5), 2538-2557.

Zhao, S., Grasmuck, S., and Martin, J. (2008). Identity construction on Facebook: Digital empowerment in anchored relationships. Computers in Human Behavior, 24(5), 1816-1836.




How to Cite

VĂTĂMĂNESCU, E. .-. M., & CONSTANTIN, I.-F. (2015). Facebook Usage as Social Screening. Exploring the Approach of Admissions Officers from Management Colleges. Management Dynamics in the Knowledge Economy, 3(1), 61. Retrieved from https://www.managementdynamics.ro/index.php/journal/article/view/122