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LinkedIn Alumni Search Hack

We all know that with the new LinkedIn changes if you want to keep accessing the database for free, you have to X-ray via a search engine like Google or Bing. Except there is still a way to search on LinkedIn. That feature is the Alumni Search – with a bit of a URL cracking twist. In this post I explain how to use it, and share with you a handy table containing links to search for various degree holders in most countries.

LinkedIn Alumni Search

1. How to trick the LinkedIn Alumni Search?

The Alumni Search’s basic usage lets you select a certain school and browse, filter or search through the LinkedIn users who chose that institute in the Education part of their profile. In the good old days you were not forced to select a certain school, you could just write in a keyword, and search in ALL the schools having that word in their name. Then LinkedIn surprisingly cancelled that feature. The good news is that while I was playing with the Alumni Search, I have noticed it’s not completely gone – we can still access it with the right URL-s.

The trick itself is easy. Going to Connections – Find Alumni, you see the alumni of your school, which looks something like this.

alumni

If you delete the id part of the URL (red underline) and rely simply on the “name” part of the URL, you can still type in keywords and force LinkedIn to bend your way. While the basic usage of searching for grads from a certain university is quite handy already, this offers you a lot more options.

Say you are looking for tech talent – instead of having to go through all the tech universities one by one, you can just write in a keyword like technical to get people from educational institutes containing the word “technical”. You can be more specific (focusing on networking certifications by going with Cisco) or more general (going for university).

It’s great if you find a great, specific pool which solves your position in itself, but in typical cases you have to start from a broader picture, and narrow it down further with filters and keywords (check point 3, as you will see the filters strongly encourage you to start broad).To be able to start strong in almost any country, I have gathered some helpful words in the table below.

2. The table

The usage of the table is (hopefully) really easy. Just start typing in the name of the country you want to search in to the Search field on the top right corner, and the corresponding row will come up – alternatively feel free to browse through all the countries. The left column pair is essentially the word “university” in many languages, while on the right are other educational organizations like colleges or institutes – the number of users in those countries is added, so you know how big of a pool can you expect.

In each row I have incorporated various languages, some not even native to the country. If you do not care about the languages use them simply as an additional pool in a decreasing order – if you do however, then they can be THE pool (great way to find Swiss Germans, Chinese Americans, etc. for example).

CountryUniversityUsers Other educational keywordsUsers
WorldwideUniversity48,500,000College
School
Institute
Academy
21,450,000
19,000,000
6,300,000
1,750,000
AlgeriaUniversité
University
76,000
16,000
École
Institut
School
Institute
College
16,250
12,500
4,500
2,700
1,600
ArgentinaUniversidad
University
850,000
24,500
Instituto
Escuela
Colegio
College
Institute
160,000
91,000
47,000
11,000
6,000
AustraliaUniversity1,550,000Institute
College
Institute
600,000
530,000
230,000
AustriaUniversität
University
64,000
34,000
School
Fachhochschule
College
Institute
Hochschule
Institut
Schule
12,000
8,800
6,200
3,500
3,300
2,000
1.200
BelarusBelarus13,000колледж
School
College
Institute
школа
2,300
1,900
1,500
1,500
1,200
BelgiumUniversiteit
Université
University
135,000
92,000
72,500
Hogeschool
École
School
College
Institut
Institute
140,000
66,000
65,000
53,000
48,000
11,000
Bosnia and HerzegovinaUniversity
Univerzitet
10,500
6,500
School
Fakultet
Škola
College
4,600
4,000
1,700
1,100
BrazilUniversidade
University
2,700,000
103,000
Escola
Colegio
Instituto
School
College
Institute
460,000
394,000
280,000
100,000
31,600
16,000
BulgariaUniversity
университет
88,000
1,600
School
College
Institute
36,000
5,700
3,000
CameroonUniversité
University
20,000
15,000
Institut
Ecole
College
School
Institute
6,000
5,300
5,000
3,400
2,600
CanadaUniversity
Université
2,210,000
380,000
College
School
Institute
École
1,350,000
570,000
380,000
100,000
ChileUniversidad
University
630,000
24,000
Instituto
Colegio
Escuela
School
College
Institute
87,000
30,000
23,300
16,700
8,100
5,000
China大学
University
大學
1,150,000
740,000
20,000
学院
School
College
Institute
学校
學院
340,000
100,000
71,000
62,000
27,500
1,600
ColombiaUniversidad
University
670,000
28,500
Escuela
Colegio
Instituto
School
College
Institute
53,000
42,000
26,500
14,000
8,500
4,500
CroatiaUniversity
Sveučilište
32,000
4,000
School
Škola
Fakultet
College
Institute
20,500
11,500
11,000
3,700
1,600
Czech RepublicUniversity80,500Skola
School
College
Institute
Institut
63,000
24,000
10,500
6,500
4,500
DenmarkUniversitet
University
220,000
95,000
School
Skole
College
Institute
Institut
112,000
83,000
67,600
12,000
7,500
EcuadorUniversidad
University
200,000
10,000
Escuela
Colegio
Instituto
School
College
36,000
14,000
12,500
5,000
3,000
EgyptUniversity270,000School
Institute
College
كلية
85,000
20,000
19,000
800
EstoniaUlikool
University
12,500
10,000
School
College
Institute
Kool
Kolledž
6,260
2,500
800
500
350
FinlandUniversity
Yliopisto
97,000
90,000
School
Korkeakoulu
College
Institute
Instituutti
Koulu
36,000
24,200
15,500
15,500
7,700
1,700
FranceUniversité
University
1,000,000
215,000
École
Institut
School
College
Institute
Hochschule
600,000
274,000
214,000
79,200
41,500
3,600
GermanyUniversität
University
450,000
240,000
Hochschule
Fachhochscule
School
College
Schule
Institute
Akademie
Institut
Berufskolleg
Berufskademie
124,000
121,000
93,000
45,200
33,000
28,000
26,500
17,000
11,000
10,000
GreeceUniversity
Panepistimio
πανεπιστήμιο
142,000
3,400
1,250
School
College
Institute
50,000
30,700
25,000
Hong KongUniversity
大學
175,000
85,000
School
College
大学
Institute
學院
56,000
42,000
17,000
14,500
4,400
Hungary
Egyetem
82,000
45,000
School
College
Főiskola
Iskola
27,500
22,000
12,500
2,700
IcelandHáskóli
University
9,000
7,600
School
College
Institute
2,700
2,500
700
IndiaUniversity
Jami'a
3,660,272
25,000
School
College
Institute
2,700,000
2,300,000
1,650,000
IndonesiaUniversitas
University
500,000
177,000
Institut
School
Sekolah
Institute
Tinggi
College
85,000
67,000
30,500
28,000
27,500
18,300
IranUniversity
دانشگاه
321,000
1,500
School
Institute
College
22,000
7,500
5,000
IrelandUniversity200,000College
Institute
School
Coláiste
Scoil
220,000
154,000
87,000
13,800
6,500
IsraelUniversity
אוניברסיטה
174,000
200
College
School
Institute
מכללה
מכון
בית ספר
63,000
30,000
25,500
400
300
250
ItalyUniversitaUniversity1,570,000
132,000
Istituto
Scuola
School
College
Institute
Collegio
290,000
98,000
85,000
26,000
23,000
10,000
JapanUniversity
大学
160,000
145,000
School
College
学校
Institute
学院
33,500
22,200
20,100
12,700
11,900
3,600
KazakhstanUniversity
университет
26,000
17,000
институт
School
Institute
колледж
College
6,100
5,800
4,800
3,700
3,200
KoreaUniversity
대학
126,000
115,000
학교
School
College
Institute
학원
전문 대학
121,000
22,100
12,300
8,900
4,500
700
LatviaUniversitāte
University
25,000
10,500
School
College
Institute
Koledža
10,000
2,800
1,900
1,200
LithuaniaUniversitetas
University
43,000
16,000
School
Mokykla
College
Kolegija
Institute
6,700
3,800
3,100
2,900
1,800
MacedoniaUniversity
Univerzitet
15,000
10,500
School
College
Fakultet
Institute
3,100
1,600
1,100
1,000
MalaysiaUniversity
universiti
210,000
140,000
College
School
Sekolah
Kolej
Institute
Institut
78,600
50,000
29,300
28,200
27,000
4,500
MexicoUniversidad
University
1,000,000
70,000
Instituto
Escuela
Colegio
School
College
Institute
310,000
78,000
40,000
33,000
17,200
11,000
MontenegroUniversity3,500School
Fakultet
1,400
1,100
MoroccoUniversité
University
69,000
16,000
École
Institut
School
College
Institute
52,000
24,000
8,000
4,000
2,700
NetherlandsUniversiteit
University
510,000
290,000
Hogeschool
College
School
HBO
MBO
HAVO
Institute
VWO
VMBO
Faculteit
Kollege
Hochschule
730,000
515,000
175,000
82,000
59,000
55,000
31,000
25,500
11,000
3,400
2,300
2,100
New ZealandUniversity
Whare wānanga
236,000
400
College
School
Institute
115,000
110,000
40,000
NorwayUniversity
Universitetet
Universitet
108,000
78,500
36,500
Skole
School
College
Institute
Høyskole
55,000
52,000
35,700
7,500
4,700
PeruUniversidad
University
505,000
17,000
Escuela
Instituto
Colegio
School
College
Institute
54,000
21,500
16,000
13,000
4,800
3,200
PolandUniwersytet
University
145,000
105,000
Szkoła
School
College
Institute
Uczelnia
106,000
35,000
10,100
8,300
4,900
PortugalUniversidade
University
260,000
28,000
Escola
Instituto
School
Colegio
Institute
College
165,000
160,000
28,500
17,000
7,000
5,400
Russiaуниверситет
University
420,000
210,000
институт
Institute
школа
School
колледж
College
127,000
48,000
45,000
40,000
25,100
12,600
Saudi ArabiaUniversity
جامعة
250,000
5,000
School
College
Institute
كلية
76,000
58,100
32,000
450
SerbiaUniversity
Univerzitet
44,000
31,500
School
Fakultet
College
Institute
22,200
15,000
4,200
1,500
SingaporeUniversity
Universiti
350,000
4,500
School
Institute
College
Kolej
104,000
61,000
90,400
1,200
SloveniaUniversity
Univerza
19,600
16,000
School
Šola
College
Institute
Institut
6,500
5,700
1,800
800
400
South AfricaUniversity
Universiteit
620,000
200,000
School
College
Institute
430,000
190,000
53,000

SpainUniversidad
Univerzitat
University
1,260,000
380,000
165,000
Escuela
Instituto
Colegio
College
Institut
Escola
Institute
Col·legi
Hochschule
200,000
110,000
88,000
46,500
36,700
24,000
21,000
6,000
3,200
SwedenUniversitet
University
230,000
185,000
Högskola
School
Institute
College
Skola
Institut
75,000
73,000
30,000
23,700
10,000
5,000
SwitzerlandUniversity
Universität
Université
121,000
75,000
50,000
School
École
Hochschule
College
Institute
Institut
Fachhochschule
71,500
71,250
47,500
35,600
23,000
20,000
17,000
Taiwan大學
University
112,000
100,000
School
College
Institute
學院
15,000
9,000
6,300
3,900
TanzaniaUniversity
Chuo
50,000
4,000
School
Institute
College
25,000
13,000
11,200
TunisiaUniversité
University
24,300
5,000
École
Institut
School
Institute
College
25,000
6,200
3,400
1,400
TurkeyUniversity
Üniversite
193,000
5,300
School
College
Koleji
Institute
53,500
23,500
19,700
9,100
UkraineUniversity
университет
університет
130,000
52,000
5,500
институт
School
College
школа
колледж
інститут
20,000
16,000
7,200
6,300
3,400
1,500
United KingdomUniversity3,600,000School
College
Institute
Academy
Hochschule
Coláiste
2,200,000
1,600,000
230,000
170,000
4,000
1,100
United StatesUniversity
Universidad
大学
Universität
Université
大學
대학
26,000,000
250,000
170,000
58,000
56,900
42,500
24,000
College
School
Institute
Academy
Colegio
Hochschule
學院
12,000,000
8,700,000
2,200,000
720,000
30,000
8,000
1,000
VenezuelaUniversidad
University
270,000
14,000
Instituto
Colegio
8500
School
College
Institute
21,000
8,500
4,000
3,100
2,000
VietnamUniversity
126,000Hoc
School
College
Institute
22,600
19,000
10,100
6,800
WalesPrifysgol40,000Ysgol
Coleg
15,000
8,300

Note: If you notice a great expression missing, let me know in comments and I will ad to the table. If  you want to see the whole picture without pagination, click here.

It is possible to combine the keywords in the table with an OR operator. To do this the URL has to look something like this – keywords separated with +OR+:

or

Feel free to connect the keywords from the table to suit your individual needs, or if you want to save some of the hussle you can use this general link as well. I have added many of the above keywords to this link, but LinkedIn has it’s limits. Certainly I could have added more, but the more you add, slower it gets.

bit.ly/linalumni

3. Filtering

3.1. Date attended/graduated

In all of LinkedIn, I have always found the Alumni search to be the best way to narrow down the years of experience and age of a candidate. If you do use this feature, be sure to toggle off the option of including people without dates – leaving it on would most definitely ruin your search.

attended

Depending on how strict results you want, you can go for a broader range with the Attended filter (useful for let’s say 5-10 years of experience), or change it to Graduated (great for fresh grads).

3.2. Company, Industry, Field of study, Skills

The reason why you do not necessarily have to go with specific universities to find specific talent are the great filters. I would not suggest to use all of them at once – typically 1-2 should be enough. Depending on what you are looking for I would either suggest to stick with Field of study (fresh grads) or Industry (young professionals). While searching for more senior candidates probably the Current Company is the filter you appreciate most – seeing how there is no 100% method to narrow down the current workplace via Google this is a great resource.

Skills are great if you have a really specific need in mind (example: ArchiCAD), otherwise I would rarely use them for filtering candidates. They do have a great alternative usage though. As Irina has discovered a while back when the university keyword on LinkedIn Alumni Search was fully supported, they are a good alternative for LinkedIn Skills. I thought this died with the university search, but the URL crack above makes it still possible to use this.

In Skills and Companies you are not limited to the main listed options, by clicking on the magnifying glass and starting typing you can select from all companies and skills present on LinkedIn.

4. Searching

 Nothing too special over there, but I wanted to highlight that it supports all basic Boolean operators. The keywords you write in here search in the whole profile, including languages and skills.

This means that in practice with LinkedIn Alumni Search – although not for the whole LinkedIn dataset – you can source and recruit candidates from one or multiple target companies, further narrowing it with a fine-tuned string and skill/industry filters. What more would you wish for?

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6 Comments

  1. Hi Vince,

    In the table I’m missing ‘MBO’ for The Netherlands. It’s 59,563 😉

    Gr
    Timon

    • vinceszy

      January 27, 2015 at 8:39 am

      Thanks, added 🙂 From my personal experience, Netherlands has probably the most school/degree types. I would probably be still trying to understand it without this page and the picture in it.

      • Haha, I can imagine it’s hard to understand for a non-Dutch 😉 Maybe it’s also good to know that ‘college’ is not actually a schooltype but it’s used in names of schools like ‘Alfrink College’. There you can do VMBO (the old name is MAVO), HAVO or VWO (Gymnasium / Atheneum). Did I help you with this? 🙂

        • vinceszy

          January 27, 2015 at 8:55 am

          Yeah, the situation with college is pretty similar in most countries – that’s the reason why they bring a lot of results ins 🙂 All the HAVO, VMBO, MAVO etc. are technically mistakes, as they are really degree types, but as you can see still many people add them in to the “name of the educational institute” field. Oddly enough that is not a global tendency, as doing a general search for ba or bachelor brings just 40 and 60K results respectively.

  2. Hi Vince,

    first of all, many thanks for this hack! Great find!

    You can also add for Germany (other educational keywords):

    Akademie: 25K
    Berufsakademie: 10K
    Berufskolleg: 11K

    Hope that helps 😉

    Cheers,
    Sebastian

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