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Surprising Gap in Social Media Education at Top Business Schools

In an April 25th op-ed piece for Forbes (www.forbes.com, 2012), contributor Mark Fidelman brings forth a surprising statistic -- that 36 percent of the top 25 U.S. business schools do not offer any social media or social business courses. Considering the vast reach of social media as it applies to individuals, brands, and organizations, Fidelman believes MBA programs that don't offer social media or social business courses are not properly preparing their students for future leadership positions.

The article references statistics from ComScore, an Internet marketing research company, showing that 82 percent of the world's online population uses social media. Furthermore, users spend nearly one out of every five online minutes using social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. In fact, 1.2 billion people use social media to connect with brands and individuals, proving that social media is here to stay, Fidelman asserts.

"Students need to walk out of University with extensive experience in social media, it's impact on the organization and how it's changed the buyer/seller relationship," Dr. Natalie Petouhoff, social media executive education program director at UCLA, says in the article.

Fidelman hopes that MBA programs will adapt to the times and update their curriculum to reflect the relevance of social media in business. His research found that while many schools offer elective courses in social media and business, only one of the top 25 business schools (Emory University's Goizueta Business School) had a required course in social media. Georgetown University's McDonough School of Business offered seven electives in social media and business, the most of any of the top 25 b-schools.