A student guide to Instagram

Bronwyn Wood (pictured left) and Laura Mathers (right) reveal how to get the most from their favourite social media platform

Published: 28 July 2021 Students

What do we as diagnostic radiography students love about Instagram?

  • It’s a place to connect with fellow students and be involved with the healthcare student community. You will be able to connect with so many people, including those in other healthcare professions.
  • It opens up opportunities. There are lots of other great opportunities that have come directly from building a profile on Instagram, including speaking on webinar panels, starting a YouTube channel, and making and selling revision resources.
  • You can help yourself and others. You are able to seek advice from more experienced students and also help others who are just starting out.
  • You can engage in reflection. Think of it as a diary and you will be able to look back and see how far you’ve come.
  • You can connect with qualified professionals. Seek advice from qualified practitioners from all backgrounds to help you prepare for starting work.

Why Instagram is the best platform

  • Personalisation – you can be creative with your content by designing a layout, choosing a specific colour scheme or writing style, and uploading many pictures at once.
  • More space to write – unlike Twitter, you are not limited to a small word count for your captions, so you can talk about your experiences in some detail. You can also use hashtags related to your profession so you appear in more people’s searches.
  • Ease of use – when you follow somebody, Instagram will suggest similar accounts to follow. This enables you to grow your account quickly and make more friends easily.

Accounts to follow to get you started

Along with fellow student radiographers (diagnostic and therapeutic), you can follow your university’s RadSoc to keep up with the latest news and events for your cohort. Here are some of our favourite accounts:

@SoRStudentReps The SoR student reps are amazing at keeping students up to date with events and offering tips for student life.
@radiopaedia Great for looking at cases. On Twitter they post radiographs allowing you to say what you think the injury/pathology is and provide a link with the answer. This is very useful for practising your image interpretation and preliminary clinical evaluations.
@theradiologistpage Good for familiarising yourself with images from multiple modalities, many with labelled anatomy.
@uoc_insideout This is a diagnostic radiography student-led platform with plenty of useful information about radiography as a career choice and how it is taught at university.
@SCoRMembers All the latest news from the SCoR. @onthefrontlineahps Read stories from members of all the allied healthcare professions, including radiography

Dos and Don'ts

  • DO think before you post. You are representing your chosen profession and your university so anything you say could affect your career. Be mindful of what you are posting and always be sure that you are not breaching confidentiality or social media policies. For more information and advice, read the HCPC’s Guidance on Social Media and your university’s or clinical placement site’s social media policies.
  • DO get involved. The healthcare student community is so welcoming, especially if you are new and have questions or worries. There are so many people experiencing the same things who can help you. If you are tagged in anything, such as ‘get to know me’ stories, be sure to take part and tag other people you know – even better, make your own template for others to share.
  • DO be individual and stand out. Get creative with your posts and layouts. Take inspiration from others but try not to copy other students’ ideas – they are also working hard to grow their audience and reach more people.
  • DON’T share any patient information. You are allowed to talk about your experiences on placement, however, do not share any details that could make a case identifiable in any way. Confidentiality most important, both in and out of practice.
  • DON’Tpostanythingthatyouarenotcomfortablewith.Some people may be happy to share things, such as what university they go to, what their uniform looks like and other aspects
  • of their daily life as a student, but others may not. Both are perfectly respectable choices but, as with all social media, don’t post anything that could reveal personal details about yourself, such as your rotas, placement sites or addresses.

Bronwyn Wood (@radiographywithme) is a first-year diagnostic radiography student at the University of Leeds.
Laura Mathers (@lauradiography) is working as a Band 4 radiographer while she waits for her HCPC registration.