Student Survey - Winter 2020

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Survey Text
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Survey Interpretation

Computer Lab Management (CLM) annually surveys students who use the campus computer rooms. This data may be useful in determining what computer the "average" student owns and what the campus should support.

  • Computer ownership among students remained close to universal with 95.5% owning laptops and 17.2% owning desktops. Only 4 students (2.0%) reported they didn't own a computer.
  • Smartphone ownership remains close to universal (95.5%).
  • Tablet ownership has stabilized around 35-40%.
  • Mac ownership has grown from 7.2% in Winter 2006 to 48.5% in Winter 2019. Mac ownership is greater than PC ownership (46.0%) for the first time in this survey's history.
  • Among PC users, Windows 10 is by far the most commonly used operating system. No other PC OS has a significant user base.
  • Mac users primarily use MacOS 10.15, with a substantial minority on macOS 10.14 and macOS 10.13.
  • Therefore, at this time it is probably safe to support just Windows 10, macOS 10.13, macOS 10.14, and macOS 10.15
  • Questions 3 & 6 show that students mostly use the computer rooms:
    • To print (mostly class related)
    • They have a class in a computer classroom
    • When they leave their laptop at home
    • To access academic websites
    • To access specialized software or hardware
  • Printing appears to be the primary reason students use the computer rooms. This is not surprising since ink-jet cartridges tend to be expensive so printing on a ink-jet printer at home is more expensive than printing in the computer rooms.
  • Question 7 shows that the sheets required to meet a student's academic printing needs varies widely depending on the student. However, a quota of 100 sheets would meet the need over 80% of the students.
  • Google Drive usage has been slowly increasing over the past few years and now students primarily use Google Drive to transfer files between computers (48.5%). The primary method for most of the past decade has been email (33.8%), so this is a major change in behavior. Flash drives are used by 6.6% and none of the other methods are used extensively.
  • Microsoft Office remained the most used Office Suite at 50.0% for all versions. Reported use of Google Docs has varied a lot year to year (10% in 2017, 12.3% in 2018, 35.2% in 2019 and 29.3% this year.) It's hard to project what will happen, but is seems Google Docs is becoming more popular.
  • Question 7 garnered a wide variety of responses, but the most common themes are:
    • Printing received by far the most responses. There is a strong desire for free and/or cheaper printing.
    • Many students are confused about the computer rooms we operate. There was a complaint about a lab in Kemper. Some of the other comments appear to be about other computer labs as well.

Survey Text

On March 5th, 2019 Computer Lab Management (CLM) sent the following survey 5000 students who had uses the campus computer rooms during Winter 2020.

Survey Results

There were 198 responses.

Question 1. Class Standing

  Number Percentage
First year 30 15.2%
Second year 47 23.7%
Third year 43 21.7%
Fourth year 48 24.2%
Fifth or more year 9 4.5%
Masters candidate 4 2.0%
PhD candidate 15 7.6%
Professional School 0 0%
No answer 2 1.0%

Question 2a. What types of computers do you own?

  Number Percentage
Desktop 34 17.2%
Laptop 189 95.5%

Question 2b. Which of these other electronic devices do you own?

  Number Percentage
Tablet 74 37.4%
Smartphone 189 95.5%
eReader 17 8.6%

Question 3. Why do you use the computer rooms?

  Number Percentage
I don't own a computer 4 2.0%
When my laptop/phone runs out of power 42 21.2%
When I leave my laptop at home 56 28.3%
Access academic related (Canvas, DavisMail, SISWeb, etc.) 56 28.3%
Access websites for non-academic reasons 4 2.0%
I need to print 164 82.8%
I need access to specialized software which I do not own 47 23.7%
I need access to specialized hardware which I do not own (e.g. scanners, video editors, etc.) 37 18.7%
The campus computers have faster Internet access 13 6.6%
The campus computers work better than mine 13 6.6%
The campus computers have bigger monitors than my laptop 26 13.1%
I have a class that meets in a computer classroom 56 28.3%

Other Reasons Listed:

  • My laptop is slow and I can’t afford a new one
  • My laptop was broken
  • Printing
  • I focus and study better in the environment setting.
  • I do not own a laptop
  • When I need two screens. My own laptop for doing research and taking notes. The computers at the computer room for opening up the assignments and homework problems.
  • Good study space where I can charge my devices as well.
  • I get distracted on my own computer and I feel like when I'm on a computer I'm not used to, I'm more likely to pay attention to what's in front of me.
  • I commute, and my laptop is too big to carry
  • When my computer breaks down.
  • its easier to focus in computer labs
  • I can focus without the distractions on my laptop
  • Printing
  • In order to use two screens

Question 4.  If you own a computer please answer the following question. If you own more than one computer, please respond for the computer you use most often.


  Number Percentage
Desktop 14 7.1%
Laptop 174 87.9%
No answer 10 5.1%

Operating System:

  Number Percentage
Windows 10 80 40,4%
Windows 8/8.1 1 0.5%
Windows 7 3 1.5%
Windows - older version 0 0%
Windows - not sure what version 3 1.5%
macOS 10.15 Catalina 44 22.2%
macOS 10.14 Mojave 17 8.6%
macOS 10.13 High Sierra 15 7.6%
macOS - older version 4 2.0%
macOS - not sure what version 16 8.1%
Linux or Unix 2 1.0%
Other 2 2.0%

Office Suite:

  Number Percentage
Microsoft Office 365 (online version) 34 17.2%
Microsoft Office 2019 (Mac/PC) 45 22.7%
Microsoft Office 2016 (Mac/PC) 17 8.6%
Older version of Microsoft Office 3 1.5%
Pages, Numbers & Keynote (Apple) 2 1.0%
OpenOffice, LibreOffice, FreeOffice 0 0.0%
Google Docs 58 29.3%
Not sure 8 4.0%
Other 1 0.5%


  Number Percentage
None 117 59.1%
Ink Jet 33 16.7%
Laser 14 7.1%
Other 9 4.5%

Please check all the peripherals you own:

  Number Percentage
USB flash drive 135 68.2%
External hard drive 66 33.3%
Scanner 33 16.7%
3D Printer 3 1.5%

Question 5. How do you normally transfer your work from one computer to another:

  Number Percentage
USB flash drive 13 6.6%
Portable hard drive 1 0.5%
Email file to yourself 67 33.8%
Google Drive 96 48.5% 1 0.5%
Microsoft OneDrive 3 1.5%
Dropbox 2 1.0%
iCloud 0 0%
Other Internet or cloud based file storage 1 0.5%
AirDrop (to/from IET computer) 6 3.0%
Other 0 0%
No answer 8 4.0%

Question 6. If you have printed in the computer rooms, why did you print?

  Number Percentage
I didn't print in the computer rooms 17 8.6%
I don't own a printer 101 51.0%
I printed class assignments (e.g. essays, homework, labs) 149 75.3%
I printed class materials (e.g. research, syllabi, readings) 105 53.0%
I printed personal documents (not class related) 53 26.8%
The campus printers are better than mine 20 10.1%

Question 7. How many sheets do you need to print each quarter for academic purposes (class material, assignments, study aids)?

  Number Percentage
Less than 25 sheets 76 38.4%
26 to 50 sheets 58 29.3%
51 to 75 sheets 16 8.1%
76 to 100 sheets 14 7.1%
101 to 150 sheets 7 3.5%
150 to 200 sheets 9 4.5%
Over 200 sheets 6 3.0%

Question 7. Do you have other suggestions or comments to help improve the campus computer rooms or services?

  • Make color cheaper.
  • Free unlimited printing for all students!!!!
  • Tech support for student laptop computers would be a great service not currently offered on campus.
  • I don’t really have any suggestions since I just use it for printing. I usually use it when I run out of ink or when class materials are posted when I’m already at school. I’m glad it is available for me to use.
  • My recommendation for the computer room or services is to apply/demand for funding that will create a loaner laptop program at Shields or other libraries. This can help ease poor/working-class students from jeopardizing their studies when the computer labs are full. For example, I completed my undergraduate degree at UCLA where they lend out laptops at the CLICC Lab inside of the Young Research Library. My laptop broke all of last week (end of February 2020) and I was running around looking for loaner laptops here at UC Davis to carry with me in seminar and around the campus. Upon asking at the information desk inside of Shields, I was devastated to find out that there isn't a Clicc Lab, or something similar here at this campus. Why is this so? Is there no funding? Is there no demand (which I believe there is)? I was able to find a loaner laptop in my department (history) but that access is unattainable if you are not a graduate student or faculty member. Having the University of California purchase 100 older-generation macbook airs or macbook pros can help tremendously and make the computer services here at UCD that much better. Arguably, Cliic Labs/Loaner laptop programs should be the standard across the University of California libraries.
    Link for Cliic Lab at UCLA:
    Please take this into consideration because although the computer labs at UCD are great, they are static and if one needs to use the laptop for class, we run into trouble.
  • Not all computers are connected to the printer
  • Printing is too expensive
  • At least 15-20 more free printing pages would be very helpful!
  • The computer rooms are very nice and quick to use. It sucks that the internet is garbage, but at least these services are available for academic purposes so its okay
  • I often get weak prints from the toner being low or not working properly.
  • Dear representative, about 1 month after using a computer in the computer room in Shields Library, google detected an unsuccessful intrusion to my email. I have changed my credentials, immediately. I never use my credentials anywhere other than my own computer. This only happened after I used the computer room.
  • Sometimes the computers can be a bit slow to start up. This can take away from valuable class time.
  • make printing free!
  • Allow Flow-Pro to be run on campus computers
  • Would appreciate free printing
  • thanks!
  • it would be nice if the mouse, keyboards, and the desk got wiped down with some type of cleaner. a lot of the mouses and keyboards are crusted with grime and its gross!
  • I suggest to add more choices for the weight and size for color printing. For example, I want to print a12'*18' and 80-lb paper, but the computer rooms don't allow.
  • Add more choices for the size and weight in color printing. For example,I want to print a 80-lb and 12'* 18' paper, but the computer rooms do not allow.
  • I used the computer lab to print color posters for a graduate symposium. This took a little longer than I planned since the color printing has to be okayed by a computer room attendant and I waited for ~15-20 mins while the attendant working was occupied with helping another person. So my suggestion would be to either not have color printing need the okay from an attendant, or to perhaps have more than one attendant on staff at a time if possible.
  • Perhaps upgraded computer monitors.
  • It would be great if the computers, mouses, and keyboards weren't sticky and dirty. It would be great if the computers, mouses, and keyboards were sanitized.
  • Maybe provide sanitizer wipes so we can wipe down the keyboard before use just like at the ARC.
  • Keep up the great work/service
  • Nah. They are helpful and in many spaces which is cool.
  • None at the moment. The printing room has been a great resource for me.
  • I'd love to have study spaces with chargers and such for devices and Ethernet access if I bring my own cable (or perhaps they could be provided?)
  • What if we can install some extension to the computer room's computer.
  • If there was a more accessible map of all of the computer rooms, that would be great. At the moment, I always just go to Shields Library because I don't know about the other ones.
  • 40 free prints per quarter for all students would be appreciated
  • It's always super clean and I greatly appreciate that.
  • Keep them cleaner please; a lot of the Windows stations in the SCC are always really oily
  • nope! I like the scc computer lab, and how often they are diligently cleaned! :)
  • Stop charging us for printing. Have a after hours computer accessibility because not everyone has a laptop.
  • Put notification sign in front of the print in peter’s J shield that tells students to double check their paper to make sure they don’t take other people’s on accident. My paper always get taken away from other students.
  • Not all of the computers have SPSS which can be frustrating when I am trying to use it
  • Please maintain printers periodically to ensure legible output. Some of my prints show faded or extremely light characters probably due to low toner or incorrect darkness level.
  • More flexibility about food/drinks in certain labs
  • The cellphone service in Storer 93 is awful.
  • Printer in Kemper Hall is slow and breaks down often
  • N/A The Computer room consultants are great!

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