Preliminary Results of the 2006 ECAR Study of Students and Information Technology

Judith Borreson Caruso and Robert B. Kvavik  are beginning to release the findings of their latest survey of students and technology.  EDUCAUSE has posted a presentation that was given on June 29.

96 institutions participated (52 of which participated in 2005), over 28,000 students took the survey, and as before there were qualitative surveys with a group of (78) students.  Some of the findings include:

  • Both desktop and laptop ownership are up by about 10% each over last year.
  • 71.3% own digital cameras and 57.3%  own a music device
  • 88.2% have 2 or more e-mail addresses, and students are evenly divided when it comes to whether their university e-mail account is preferred over another account (50.3% vs. 49.7%)
  • 84.9% of the students prefer to be contacted via e-mail by their universities.
  • 56% of students use an electronic device between 11-40 hours a week
  • Almost 75% of students say they use an electronic device for course activities at least several times a week
  • More than 80% of the students use an electronic device for creating presentations at least once a semester
  • 25% of students are not using a course management system
  • 46.1% use the Library at least once a week
  • 79.5% use e-mail every day
  • 46.7% use IM every day, but 18.5% never use IM
  • 71.4% have never used a blog
  • 30.5% use online social networks, but 29.4% never have
  • The top 3 items students picked for additional IT investment were computer labs, printing, and network speed.  Faculty IT training ranked as the lowest priority.
  • Student desire for IT in courses is up.  In 2005, 40.5% looked for a moderate amount of IT in classes, this year 56.2% prefer a moderate amount of IT.  Preference for extensive use of IT is up too – from 19.5% last year to 27.3% this year.
  • 69% agreed or strongly agreed that IT in courses helps them do better research
  • 68.7%  agreed or strongly agreed that IT in courses results in more prompt feedback from instructors
  • 56.8%  agreed or strongly agreed that instructors use IT well in their courses
  • 55.3%  agreed or strongly agreed that IT in courses helps them better communicate with classmates
  • 72.7% have used a course management system; 75.5% of them report a positive or very positive experience
  • Keeping track of grades remains the most popular feature for students in a course management system (50.1%)
  • 64.2% report IT in courses improves learning
  • 68% never bring their laptop to classes
  • 90.3% of students most frequently use Broadband access to the internet (41.8% using campus services)

Lots of good stuff here.  I look forward to reading the full report.

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