An Exploratory Study of HBCU Accounting and Other Business Students’ Perceptions and Usage of LinkedIn

Xia Zhang, Botao Chen


We administer a survey to evaluate accounting and other business students’ perceptions and usage of the social networking site LinkedIn. The participants are students at historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs), who are underrepresented groups. Our research examines how LinkedIn shapes their social identity and establishes their self-presentation in a world of social networking. It also examines how students’ perceptions of LinkedIn benefit their future career development as well as interactive learning. The results of the survey reveal that LinkedIn is an invaluable social media tool for college students to present their social identity, network with professionals as a helpful source of career and job information. However, compared with business students, accounting students put less trust in the information obtained via professional communities on LinkedIn. Accounting students agree that LinkedIn is more distracting than helpful to students for academic work. Our study has strong implications for accounting students and other business students, as well as educators in HBCU settings.

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Accounting and Finance Research
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