3 Background and methodology The IT Services within the University of Bradford wished to conduct an online survey with a sample of their students in order to better understand attitudes towards the services they provide. An online survey was produced, which covered a number of key performance indicators that could be used as the basis for any tracking research. The questionnaire was also designed to provide comparable data to findings from the University of Sheffield, which have been used in this report. In total, the survey was sent to a random cross section of 1,000 students. To help incentivise students to take part in the survey, a prize draw was held offering a £100 Amazon voucher as the prize. 138 students responded to the survey, giving a response rate of c.14%.
5 Summary and Conclusions Overall, usage of University computing facilities is relatively high, with 8 in 10 students initially claiming to use the general use PC clusters. However, when asked more specifically about the frequency of use, over 9 in 10 students (93%) reported using the general use PC clusters at least occasionally. Similarly, 97% of students use their University email accounts, with 70% doing so on a daily basis and a further 16% 3-4 times a week. Broadly speaking, usage of University and computing and network facilities is more frequent among younger students. For example, on average, students aged 25 years and under access their University e-mail account over six times a week (6.39), whereas students aged 45 years or older only access their account less than four times a week (3.79). On average, male students are also likely to use computing facilities more frequently than female students. At least 2 in 5 students have used each of the support services provided by IT Services staff. However, use of these services is much less frequent than of the general facilities, with the majority of those using the services only doing so occasionally. The average frequency of use of the e-mail support service is significantly greater among Bradford students than among students using the same service at the University of Sheffield (0.36 times per week versus 0.10 times per week respectively). Around four in five students are satisfied with opening hours of the University computing facilities (81%) and availability of computing facilities (78%) – the latter being a significantly higher proportion of satisfied students than was recorded among Sheffield students regarding the same aspect (61%). However, Bradford students are significantly less satisfied than Sheffield students with three of the eight rated aspects (opening hours, reliability of systems and prepay printing service). Of particular concern is the level of satisfaction with the reliability of systems, with a quarter of students dissatisfied. SUMMARY AND CONCLUSIONS
6 Summary and Conclusions (continued) One fifth of students said that their first choice of possible improvements would be to increase the number of PCs available to them. Similarly, a high proportion of students also suggested that the number of printers be increased, with 13% stating this as their first choice of improvement and a further 15% as their second choice. Improving the quality of student computing rooms and increasing the number of silent IT study spaces were also highly rated by students and action in these areas should be considered moving forward. Overall, three-quarters (76%) of students agree that IT resources and services are good enough for their needs and less than one in ten (9%) disagree. Similar proportions agree and disagree (75% and 11% respectively) that they have been able to access general IT resources when they have needed to, which is comparable to levels of agreement seen among students from the University of Sheffield. However, availability of specialised equipment and facilities appears to be slightly more of an issue. Just over half (54%) agreed that they have been able to access specialised equipment/ facilities when they needed to – a significantly lower proportion than the 72% of Sheffield students who agreed that they had access to specialised equipment and facilities when needed. Disappointingly, almost one in five (19%) disagree with this statement, highlighting the importance for improvement in this area. SUMMARY AND CONCLUSIONS
7 Significantly higher than Sheffield 2008 data Significantly lower than Sheffield 2008 data Significantly higher than total Significantly lower than total MAIN FINDINGS SIGNIFICANCE TESTING
8 COMPUTING FACILITIES USED Q1. What computing facilities do you use? % Total Base: (All respondents: 138) Male students are significantly more likely than female students to use both their own laptop (21% versus 6%) and other devises such as PDAs or Smart Phones (20% versus 6%). General use PC clusters and personal computers are by far the most common computing facilities used
9 PRINTING FACILITIES USED Q2. What printing facilities do you use? % Base: (All respondents: 138) Total Around two-thirds of students use their own printer, with a similar proportion using printers in PC clusters Female students (75%) and undergraduate students (73%) are significantly more likely to use their own printer than male students or postgraduate students (both 57%).
10 FREQUENCY OF USING THE FOLLOWING UNIVERSITY COMPUTING AND NETWORK FACILITIES DURING TERM TIME (I) Q3. How often do you use the following University computing and network facilities during term time? Every day3-4 times a week1-2 times a weekEvery 2 weeksOccasionallyNever Average frequency of use (per week) 5.63 5.00 1.93 1.35 1.04 0.97 Base: (All respondents: 138) Use of University email accounts is high, with 7 in 10 students accessing their account on a daily basis. By contrast, almost 2 in 5 (38%) never use Roamnet %
11 FREQUENCY OF USING THE FOLLOWING UNIVERSITY COMPUTING AND NETWORK FACILITIES DURING TERM TIME (II) Q3. How often do you use the following University computing and network facilities during term time? Base: (All respondents) AGESEXLEVEL Total Under 25 25- 34 35- 44 45+MaleFemale Under- graduate Post- graduate University e-mail account5.636.396.144.373.722.214.171.1245.41 Internet access5.005.405.983.244.285.504.605.094.83 General use PC clusters1.932.252.031.730.812.271.671.951.90 Departmental PC clusters1.351.431.640.931.081.980.851.271.50 The wireless network (Roamnet)1.041.191.170.810.531.220.890.921.28 Printers in PC clusters0.971.031.140.900.391.170.810.931.04 (138)(55)(40)(29)#(14)#(61)(77)(91)(47) Average frequency of use (per week) # Caution – low base size There is a correlation between age and frequency of using University computing facilities – specifically, the younger the student the more frequently they are likely to use the computing facilities On average, male students also use computing facilities more frequently then their female counterparts On average, younger students and male students use the University’s computing facilities the most frequently
12 0.360.10 0.32*0.20 0.28N/A 0.16N/A 0.110.05 FREQUENCY OF USING THE FOLLOWING SUPPORT SERVICES PROVIDED BY UNIVERSITY IT SERVICES STAFF Base: (All respondents: 138) Q4. How often do you use the following support services provided by University IT services staff? University of Sheffield 2008 Every day3-4 times a week1-2 times a weekEvery 2 weeksOccasionallyNever Average frequency of use (per week) * Refers to the University of Sheffield’s Corporate Information and Computing Services web pages On average, E-mail support is the most frequently used service provided by the University, although a greater proportion use both the IT Services web pages and the Learner Support Centre
13 University of Bradford 2009 % Very/ fairly satisfied Base: (Those answering) % Very dissatisfied % Very satisfied % Neither satisfied nor dissatisfied Availability of computing facilities (133) 88 61 75 65 71 N/A 76 72 University of Sheffield 2008 % Very/ fairly satisfied Software (131) Opening hours (130) Prepay printing service (123) Reliability of systems (132) Availability of staff (123) Printed/ online information on using computer services (113) IT advice and support (114) SATISFACTION WITH THE FOLLOWING ASPECTS OF UNIVERSITY COMPUTING FACILITIES Q5. How satisfied are you with the following aspects of University computing facilities? Satisfaction with the reliability of systems is a concern, with a quarter of students dissatisfied. Three of the eight aspects measured achieve significantly lower scores than Sheffield University
14 POSSIBLE AREAS OF IMPROVEMENT Base: (All respondents: 138) Q6. Here is a list of possible improvements. Which would be your first and second choice of things to improve? % Total 1 st choice of improvement 2 nd choice of improvement Increasing the number of PCs and improving the quality of student computing rooms are considered possible areas of improvement
15 University of Bradford 2009 % Definitely/ mostly agree Base: (Those answering) % Definitely/ mostly disagree % Mostly/ definitely agree % Neither agree nor disagree University of Sheffield 2008 % Definitely/ mostly agree The IT resources and services are good enough for my needs (124) I have been able to access general IT resources when I needed to (119) I have been able to access specialised equipment, facilities, or rooms when I needed to (107) AGREEMENT WITH THE FOLLOWING STATEMENTS Q7. For each statement below, please indicate the extent of your agreement or disagreement Overall, around three-quarters of students agree that general IT resources and services are accessible and good enough to meet their needs. However, specialised equipment is less accessible N/A 75 72
16 SPONTANEOUS COMMENTS ABOUT THE COMPUTING SERVICES/ FACILITIES “As a new user additional instruction could have been given particularly to those who only have basic IT skills” “It would be useful if department IT support were available outside lesson time” “The email system is archaic and difficult to use and the IT staff are very unhelpful when anything goes wrong” “Printers in computer clusters were, most of the time, not working and were out of ink” “Although quite a few areas are labelled as silent or 'quiet' study spaces, there is often quite a lot of noise” “Although computers are generally available, a high proportion are either not working properly or are slow” “Introduce another way of putting credit on university card for printing, for example online payment machines in the library.” “The number of printers is not enough and they work at a very slow speed” “I find it very expensive to print out at the library and it is much cheaper for me to buy my own printer and maintain it myself”
19 AGESEXLEVEL Total Under 25 25- 34 35- 44 45+MaleFemale Under- graduate Post- graduate E-mail support0.360.350.420.190.540.400.320.160.73 IT Services web pages0.320.30 0.310.530.310.330.300.36 Student IT workshops0.280.330.210.280.260.440.150.290.25 IT advice (Learner support centre)0.160.210.100.220.030.230.110.180.12 Telephone helpdesk (ICT service desk) 0.110.170.090.060.020.130.090.130.07 (138)(55)(40)(29)#(14)#(61)(77)(91)(47) Average frequency of use (per week) FREQUENCY OF USING THE FOLLOWING SUPPORT SERVICES PROVIDED BY UNIVERSITY IT SERVICES STAFF Base: (All respondents) Q4. How often do you use the following support services provided by University IT services staff? # Caution – low base size
20 AGESEXLEVEL Total Under 25 25- 34 35- 44 45+MaleFemale Under- graduate Post- graduate Opening hours818081887574888281 Availability of computing facilities 7876748675 797778 Software747273825965807470 Printed/ online information on using computer services 697069657068706870 Availability of staff685969886055776377 IT advice and support675874766354756354 Prepay printing service626346777059646652 Reliability of systems585053835452635663 (138)*(55)(40)(29)#(14)#(61)(77)(91)(47) % Very/ fairly satisfied # Caution – low base size Base: (Those answering) SATISFACTION WITH THE FOLLOWING ASPECTS OF UNIVERSITY COMPUTING FACILITIES Q5. How satisfied are you with the following aspects of University computing facilities? * Please note that base sizes may vary for each aspect depending on those answering
21 AGESEXLEVEL Total Under 25 25- 34 35- 44 45+MaleFemale Under- graduate Post- graduate The IT resources and services are good enough for my needs 767374818070817871 I have been able to access general IT resources when I needed to 757773796674777579 I have been able to access specialised equipment, facilities, or rooms when I needed to 546139565852565259 (125)*(53)(35)(26)#(11)#(56)(69)(86)(39) % Definitely/ mostly agree Base: (Those answering) AGREEMENT WITH THE FOLLOWING STATEMENTS Q7. For each statement below, please indicate the extent of your agreement or disagreement * Please note that base sizes may vary for each aspect depending on those answering # Caution – low base size