Guest post by Gareth Rafferty, Student Digital Champion
After analysing the data collected within the Student Digital Tracker (a survey collecting student thoughts about the digital experience at the university), Gareth produced the following blog post highlighting the key areas of importance from a students perspective.
Many business professionals question the digital skills that university students receive. “Is the university keeping up with technology changes?”, “What digital skills do they learn?” and “is it good enough for them to work within my business?” Are just some of the questions businesses may think about or ask.
Students at the University of Derby stated that the top piece of hardware that they used was a laptop. Laptop’s are useful for doing work on the go as they are portable and have good battery life. Mobile phones closely followed. They have the advantage of being pocket size and being able to access a range of resources without having the weight of a laptop. Mobiles are especially useful when it came to access the UDO app to find out student timetables, look at lecture recordings and other study materials through the internal link to course resources.
After speaking to design students, they prefer to create their designs etc on desktop computers due to wanting to use a mouse for more precise detail and more accuracy and range of movement. Printers are key for students as they have need to print assignments, posters for societies and other pieces of work.
Course resources is an online platform, where students can view their work, submit assignments and do group work on. It was said to be relied on to do course work by students at the University of Derby. This was found to be useful because of the lecture recordings and study materials areas. This is because it keeps the work done in lectures organised and easy to find in one location. Students accessed this on their mobiles when commuting as well as on laptops and desktop computers. However, students wish that more tutors would use the features on course resources to make the learning experience even better. They also want the software to not be updated during exam periods as this is a key learning resource.
Adobe Creative Cloud design software such as Photoshop and Illustrator is considered as one of the best software that the University of Derby offers. From creating infographics in Marketing, to editing images in Photography, it becomes useful for a variety of courses.
A better, more reliable Wi-Fi is just one of the wishes students in the University of Derby have. This would increase productivity of students when in the university due to being able to research and gather information quicker.
Students really enjoy using different types of technology in their courses and want a larger range of this on their course. This is because it will make them more flexible when getting into a career. Moreover, technology engages students and makes them more motivated to work hard and be more productive. Up to date software is always a must too as students want to keep up with industry standard software.