Western Illinois University: Macomb Campus
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- Campus Visit Evaluation
- Union Food Options Survey
- Identity Protection Part 2
- Increasing Student Involvement in Athletics
- Honors College Student Survey
- University Union Board End of Year Assessment
- RPTA 110 Student Pre vs. Post Learning Assessment
- Departmental Chairs Summer School Survey
- Faculty Summer School Survey
- Committee on Instructional Technology Survey of Faculty
- Student Spring Break Travel Motivation
- Smoke Free Campus Initiative
- Women and Intramural Participation
- Study Abroad Program Evaluation - Spring 2011 Abroad
- Survey of Academic Advisors
- Freshman & Junior Evaluation of Academic Advising
- Weight Changes in Female Freshmen
- Common Reading Book Selection
- Campus Recreation Marketing Survey
- RPTA Course Evaluations - Spring 2011
- Factors Affecting Views on Banning Controversial Art
- Course Evaluations for Online EIS Spring 2011 Courses
- Student Interest in Summer School
- Online Writing Centers
- Stipes 4th Floor Office Relocation Views
- EDUCAUSE Students and Use of Computing Technology
- Faculty Use of Mobile Computing
- Benefits & Barriers to Physical Activity in College Students - Spring 2011
- Perceived Stress Levels and Health Promoting Behaviors in College Students - Spring 2011
- Faculty Evaluation of President Goldfarb - Spring 2011
- Faculty Evaluation of Provost Thomas - Spring 2011
- Study Abroad Program Evaluation - Fall 2010 Abroad
- Alcohol Use - Campus Norms (Phases 1, 2, & 3) - Spring 2011
- Faculty Senate Committee Interest
- Graduate & Family Housing Satisfaction Survey
- Training & Development Needs Survey
- Library "Short Course" Evaluation - Spring 2011
- Personality & Emotion - Spring 2011
- Identity Protection Awareness
- Bachelors in General Studies (former BOT/BA) Survey (Current Students, Alumni, and Committee Members)
- Fire Administration Program Survey
- LEJA Graduate Program Survey
- Personality & Emotion
- WIU-QC VoIP Transition Satisfaction
- FYE Faculty Input on Semester Difference
- Benefits & Barriers to Physical Activity in College Students - Fall 2010
- Perceived Stress Levels and Health Promoting Behaviors in College Students - Fall 2010
- Alcohol Use - Campus Norms (Phases 1, 2, & 3) - Fall 2010
- 2010 Civil Service Employee of the Year Voting
- Dean of College of Business & Technology 4-year Evaluation
- Dean of Libraries 4-year Evaluation
- Library Department Course Evaluations - Fall 2010
- Health Science Department Course Evaluations - Fall 2010
- EIS/CSP Department Course Evaluations - Fall 2010
- SGA Off-Campus Dining with Rocky Dollars
- Take Back the Night Evaluation
- Students & Sustainability Survey
- Workplace Experiences Survey
- Food Co-op Interest Survey
- Library "Short Course" Evaluation - Fall 2010
- Social Work Students - Actualization Survey
- Social Work Students - Relationship Inventory Survey
- International Student Recruitment Suggestion Survey
- NASPA IV-E Regional Advisory Board Interest Survey
- EIS Online Course Evaluations Pilot
- Beu's "Stall Talk" Evaluation
- Social Work Students - Preparedness to Work with Older Clients
- Moms' Weekend Survey
- Study Abroad Opportunities
- Dietetics Internship Evaluation
- Study Abroad Program Evaluation - Summer 2010 Abroad
- Centennial Honors College Senior Survey
RPTA 110 Student Pre vs. Post Learning Assessment
As a way to assess learning, students enrolled in RPTA110 were asked to participate in a learning assessment at the beginning of the fall semester and again at the end of the semester so the that change in response to 11 assessment questions could be measured. 166 students participated in the pre-learning assessment and 118 participated in the post-learning assessment. All questions were rated using a 5-point Likert scale from 1=Strongly Agree to 5=Strongly Disagree. (For more information contact Dale Adkins, RTPA Chair, at KD-Adkins1@wiu.edu.)
- The greatest increase in agreement was with "I am not interested in participating in leisure activities," with the pre-learning students averaging a 4.43 and the post-learning students averaging a 4.03 for a -0.40 pre-to-post differential.
- Other statements showing an increase in agreement were "My leisure activities are stressful" (net -0.30), "I have difficulty deciding what to do during my free time (net -0.25), "Participation in leisure activities enhances my self-concept" (net -0.17), "The activities I do during my free time make me feel more confident" (net -0.15), "Leisure is a self-determined activity for me" (net -0.15), "Participating in leisure activities is something I feel I have to do in order to stay healthy" (net -0.13), and "Leisure helps me gain a sense of freedom" (net -0.07).
- The greatest decrease in agreement was with "I feel better after participating in my favorite leisure activity," with the pre-learning students averaging a 1.48 and the post-learning students averaging a 1.66 for a +0.18 pre-to-post differential.
- Other statements showing a decrease in agreement were "My involvement in leisure activities helps me feel good" (net +0.10) and "My leisure choices can contribute positively to my physical well-being" (net +0.05).
Departmental Chairs Summer School Survey
The final summer school survey was for departmental chairs, with 29 providing input regarding the need for and approach to summer school courses. (For more information contact Denise Gravitt of the Department of Engineering Technology at DD-Gravitt@wiu.edu or Renee Polubinsky of the Department of Kinesiology at RL-Polubinsky@wiu.edu.)
- 95% of responding chairs indicated that their faculty were receptive to teaching in the summer.
- 73% of chairs indicated support for a robust summer school offering what would allow their department's students to graduate in 3 calendar years instead of 4 academic years.
- 80% of chairs felt that WIU needed to adopt a different business model that in currently being used for summer school programming.
- 43% of chairs reported that student need never resulted in a change in the department's normal faculty rotation of summer school teaching, while 46% said it sometimes did and 11% reported it as being a frequent occurrence.
Faculty Summer School Survey
Complementing the student survey, WIU faculty were asked about their experiences with and interest in teaching summer school, with xxx providing input. (For more information contact Denise Gravitt of the Department of Engineering Technology at DD-Gravitt@wiu.edu or Renee Polubinsky of the Department of Kinesiology at RL-Polubinsky@wiu.edu.)
- 61% of responding faculty had taught WIU summer school classes before, with 85% having taught face-to-face classes, 41% having taught online classes, and 10% having taught blended classes.
- Among those who had taught summer school, 81% said they would teach every summer if they could, but only, 48% of those had been able to teach as often as they would like. For those who had not taught summer school, 60% said they would teach every summer if they could, but only 24% of those had been able to teach summer school as much as they would like. The most cited reasons all faculty noted for not being able to teach summer school as often as they would like were the current departmental summer school rotation policy (68%) and budget (63%), with student demand being a distant third (16%).
- In terms of when they would prefer to teach during the summer, 46% indicated a preferences for the 1st 4-week session (June), while 29% preferred the full 8-week session (June-July). Only 6% preferred the 2nd 4-week session (July), but 20% would prefer a 3-week pre-session in May.
- of the 79% of faculty expressing a teaching mode preference for summer school, 48% would prefer to teach face-to-face, while 36% would prefer to teach online and 16% would prefer a blended class format.
Committee on Instructional Technology Survey of Faculty
The Faculty Senate Council for Instructional Technology sought input from WIU faculty on their technology use and support, with 131 faculty providing comment, 93% of whom were housed on the Macomb campus. (Contact Council Chair, Hoyet Hemphill, at HH-Hemphill@wiu.edu for more information.)
- Among survey participants, 60% indicated they had contacted campus sources for software support during the past year. These faculty were then asked where (among a departmental technology representative, college technology personnel, uTech, CITR, library staff, and other) they had sought support and how they would rate their support satisfaction on a 7-point Likert scale from 1=Very Dissatisfied to 7=Very Satisfied.
- While only 9% of faculty indicated that they had contacted Library staff for software support contact, the Library staff received the highest marks (6.83).
- uTech support was contacted by 72% of faculty and college technology personnel by 45%. Despite being the most frequently contacted areas for software support they both ranked the lowest (5.47) in terms of support satisfaction.
- Of all participating faculty, 17% indicated they had contacted campus sources for support regarding software training during the past year, with the same support options listed above, and they were asked to rate their support satisfaction using the same 7-point Likert scale.
- While only 12% of faculty indicated that they had contacted a departmental technology representative for software training, these representatives received the highest marks (6.75).
- CITR was the primary point of contact for faculty seeking software training (68%), with CITR achieving a mid-point satisfaction rating of 6.17.
- Faculty were asked to indicate the level of expertise they expect their students to have with various computing technologies using a 5-point Likert scale form 1=None to 5=Expert.
- The top three expectations for lower division courses were Email (3.44), Microsoft Word (3.08). and General computer operations (3.03).
- The expected level of proficiency increased at the upper division level, as well as changing somewhat, with Email still being at the top (4.10), but Western Online taking over second place (3.70) from Microsoft Word which was now third place (3.69).
- To measure whether these expected proficiencies were realized, faculty were also asked to rate their satisfaction with the technology expertise their students brought to the classroom using a 5-point Likert scale from 1=Very Dissatisfied to 5=Very Satisfied.
- At the lower division level, the top 3 levels of satisfaction with student technology expertise well matched the expectations faculty had expressed. The greatest satisfaction was with Microsoft Word (3.47), followed by General computer operations (3.40), and Email (3.37).
- At the upper division level, only Email rated in terms of the top 3 expectations and top 3 proficiencies. The greatest faculty satisfaction with student technology expertise was with Email (3.46), followed by General computer operations (3.42) and Microsoft PowerPoint (3.38).
- Faculty were also asked to rate the level of technology instruction they provide their students on a 5-point scale from 1=None to 5=Extensive.
- Lower division students received the most training on Western Online (2.39), Ethical use of technology (2.14), and Information retrieval from library databases (2.11).
- For upper division students the most training was provided on Information retrieval from library databases (2.39), Information retrieval from online search engines like Google (2.29), and Ethical use of technology (2.18).
Student Spring Break Travel Motivation
What motivates students when it comes to their decision on what to do over Spring Break? That was the question investigated by student investigator Ying Xu and here faculty advisor, Daniel Yoder, a professor in the WIU department of Recreation, Park & Tourism Administration. Results are based on 492 responding students. (Contact Ying Xu at Y-Xu@wiu.edu or Daniel Yoder at DG-Yoder@wiu.edu for more information.)
- Among survey respondents, 48% took a Spring Break trip during 2011 and/or within the preceding 3 years, with 50% spending less that $500, 28% spending $500-999, and 22% spend $1000 or more on their most recent Spring Break trip, with 73% of Spring Break trips being at least 5 days in length and 60% being reached by car and only 39% requiring air transport.
- Survey participants were asked to evaluate 26 potential factors as reasons for their taking a Spring Break trip using a 4-point Likert rating scale from 1=Strongly Agree to 4=Strongly Disagree.
- The top motivations were Escaping from the ordinary (1/29), A break from studying (1.42), and Pleasant weather (1.45).
- At the bottom of the motivation list were Visiting casinos and gambling (2.86), Participating in sports (2.75), and Experiencing solitude (2.62).
Smoke Free Campus Initiative
Should the WIU campus become smoke-free? That was the question student researcher Bradley Ryba asked students, with 992 agreeing to participate. (For more information, contact Bradley Ryba at BR-Ryba@wiu.edu or his faculty advisor, Psychology professor David Lane at DJ-Lane@wiu.edu.)
- Of the survey participants, 24% considered themselves to be a smoker, with 48% of these reporting smoking daily during the last month and an additional 41% smoking at least 10 days out of the last 30.
- Since coming to WIU, 58% of participants maintained their pre-WIU, smoke-free lifestyle while an additional 4% stopped smoking although 6% started smoking experimentally and 2% started smoking on a regular basis. Of those who smoked before coming to WIU and still smoke, most (71%) have maintained the level of smoking while 14% have increased the amount they smoke and 15% have decreased their smoking.
- Overall, 60% of survey participants were in favor of forming a committee to look into implementing a campus smoke-free policy However, this idea was primarily supported by non-smokers, with 76% of them supporting the idea while only 9% of smokers supported the concept.
- This disparity between smokers and non-smokers was also seen in terms of their agreement that WIU should become smoke-free, with 61% of non-smokers strongly in favor and 76% of smokers being strongly not in favor of a smoke-free campus policy.
- Among smokers, 39% said they would definitely consider leaving WIU to go to another school based on a change in smoking policy with an additional 21% saying they might make that decision. If WIU did enact a smoke-free campus policy, 12% of smokers said they would decrease the amount they smoked and an additional 4% would try to quit.
Women and Intramural Participation
In an effort to improve the marketing and planning of women's intramurals on the WIU campus, Campus Recreation sought information from female students, faculty, and staff regarding the prior athletic experience, their current involvement, and input into how to provide more and/or better opportunities for Western women. Students were the majority of 379 survey respondents (68%), female staff (19%) and faculty and administrators (13%) were also represented. (Contact Dustin Van Sloten of WIU Campus Recreation at DR-Vansloten@wiu.edu for more information.)
- Among survey participants, 63.7% participated in high school competitive sports while 14.8% either do or have participated in collegiate competitive sports.
- Current exercise activity varied widely from 0 d/wk for 7% to daily (7 d/wk) for 4% while 3 d/wk was most common at 26%. Of the exercise activity, the primarily location was outside, such as jogging or walking (53%) while 35% primarily used the Student Recreation Center, 5% primarily used the YMCA, and the remaining 12% reported primary use of various locations.
- Within the campus Spencer Recreation Center, use of the walking/jogging track was most common (78%), while more than half used the Cardio Plaza (57%) and just under half used the Fitness Studios (47%), Weight Room (42%), and Aquatics Center (39%).
- Western women said the presence of men at the Spencer Recreation Center did not affect their decision to participate in Fitness Classes (75%-No), Cardio (74%-No), or Intramural Sports (70%-No). However, the presence of men did affect their decision to participate in Weight Training (62%-Yes).
- The #1 factor Western women noted as a reason for participating in in Intramural Sports was Exercise (53%), followed by Social (26%), Competition (11%), and Something to Do (11%).
Study Abroad Program Evaluation - Spring 2011 Abroad
Returning from their study abroad to Australia, Spain, England, France, United Kingdom, Germany, Sweden, Brazil, and Netherlands, 40 students provided input regarding their experiences. (Contact Dana Vizdal in the Center for International Studies at DM-Vizdal@wiu.edu for more information.)
- In ranking 6 factors which influenced their decision to participate in Study Abroad, the #1 reason was a desire to experience other cultures and viewpoints followed closely by a desire to travel.
- Faculty members were recognized by 49% of students as being someone who had recommended the study abroad opportunity, while 26% sought out study abroad without any outside influence.
- Studying abroad definitely does not always require students to use a foreign language. In fact, only 38% of students reported needing a to use a foreign language, and 73% of those who did were well prepared before leaving and all 100% made good progress in their language skills during their study abroad experience.
- Personal expenses varied widely depending on the students interests in travel while studying abroad, ranging from less that $500 by 14% to more than $4,000 by 14%, with 43% reporting they spend $500-999 on-site for personal expenses, trips, extra meals, etc.
- Study abroad was clearly a positive experience, with 96% saying influenced their ability to cope with an adapt to new and different situations, and 93% said that it increased their desire to travel abroad, altered their world view, and influenced their future plans. With a generally positive experience, 100% said they would recommend their specific study abroad program to other students.
Survey of Academic Advisors
Academic advisor were asked to provide input regarding their role of and satisfaction with academic advising to help determine how academic advising efforts can be improved for the benefit of students and advisors alike, with 46 advisors (83% professional advisors and 17% faculty advisors) providing comment. (Contact Julie O'Brien in the Advising and Academic Services Center, at JA-O-Brien@wiu.edu, for more information.)
- In terms of resources used, 98% of advisors reported frequently suing the MVS student record system, followed by 89% frequently using WARD reports, 48% frequently using emails from the Council of Academic Advisors Chair, 35% frequently using the 8-semester course plan, and only 7% reported frequently using the Online Advisor Handbook.
- In terms of resource satisfaction, 95% reported the emails form the Council of Academic Advisors Chair as being a good resource not needing improvement, followed by 83% rating the MVS student record system as good, 76% rating the WARD reports as good, 76% rating the Online Advisor Handbook as good, and with the least satisfaction, 63% rated the 8-semester course plan as good while 25% said it needed improvement and 12% said it needed a lot of improvement.
- On a 1=Good to 5=Nonexistent rating scale for level of coordination with 11 service areas across campus, the best coordination was with the Registrar's Office (1.07), followed by the Faculty and/or Chairs (1.40. The poorest coordination was for the Multicultural Center of Casa Latina, Books Cultural Center, and the Women's Center (2.74), followed by the Student Assistance Center (2.28).
- In terms of challenges of the job that adversely affect their ability to perform, academic advisors rated 14 factors on a scale from 1=Serious problem to 3=Not a problem. The greatest problems were Lack of career advancement for professional advisors (1.97), Students unprepared for advising sessions (2.09), and No input into university policies (2.18). These least problematic concerns were Difficulties in making appropriate referrals (2.88) and Lack of diversity in job responsibilities (2.83), and Lack of recognition for advising in tenure and promotion for faculty academic advisors (2.83).
- Overall, academic advisors were satisfied with their job, with 56% finding it almost always satisfying and 38% rating it as usually or often satisfying. Only 6% of advisors (and only professional academic advisors) viewed their job as rarely or only sometimes satisfying.
Freshman & Junior Evaluation of Academic Advising
In an effort to ensure that students are receiving quality academic advising, WIU freshmen and juniors were invited to evaluate their use of and satisfaction with their academic advising experience, with 98 freshmen and 130 juniors providing input. The feedback will provide information to help improve academic advising for all WIU students. (Contact Julie O'Brien in the Advising and Academic Services Center, at JA-O-Brien@wiu.edu, for more information.)
- On a 1=Strongly Agree to 5=Strongly Disagree rating scale for 8 items about meeting with their academic advisors
- The top freshman agreement was "I express concern and ask my advisor questions when I am unsure of an area that we have discussed or that I have read/heard about" (1.63) while their lowest agreement was "I have used the campus services that my advisor recommended, e.g., tutoring, counseling center, etc." (2.33).
- Juniors had the same most agreed and least agreed items, though with greater agreement (1.55) and greater disagreement (2.44).
On the same 1=Strongly Agree to 5=Strongly Disagree rating scale, students were asked about 9 items regarding their policy understanding
- The top freshman agreement was "I understand the First Year Experience requirements" (1.76) followed by "I monitor my progress toward my degree requirements" (1.79) while their lowest agreement was "I actively investigate educational opportunities, e.g., Study Abroad, Centennial Honor's College, Internships, etc." (2.67).
- Other than the FYE requirement, juniors had the same most agreed and least agreed items, though with greater agreement (1.66) and less disagreement (2.39).
- Among freshmen, 67.8% reported having met with professors/instructors during office hours, compared to 80.7% for juniors while 7.8% of freshmen said they had not missed any classes during the Spring 2012 semester compared to 11.9% for juniors.
- While most expect to meet their anticipated graduation date, the number is higher (87.8%) for freshmen than it is for juniors (78.2%).
Weight Changes in Female Freshmen
Freshmen female students at Western were invited to participate in a study investigating eating habits, alcohol consumption, physical activity patters, self-esteem, and weight change perceptions, in an effort to better understand freshman weight gain occurrence, causes, and potential solutions. Among those invited, 76 WIU freshmen women agreed to participate. The research was conducted by student researcher, Holley Begyn, under the supervision of her study advisor, Dr. Steven Radlo in WIU's Kinesiology department. (Contact Dr. Radlo for more information at SJ-Radlo@wiu.edu.)
- Among respondents, 74% indicated that their weight had changed since coming to college with 2/3 indicated they had gained weight while 1/3 had lost weight. And of those gaining weight, only 1 individual indicated it was intentional.
- Participants asked about the frequency they eat various food items from the 7 general food groups plus a mixed food group (1=never, 2=less than once/week, 3=a few times/week, 4=1-3 times/day, 5=4+ times/day).
- Fruits and juices were the most frequently consumed (3.59/5) followed by milk, yogurt, or cheese (3.39/5).
- Mixed dishes such as pizza, macaroni & cheese, tacos, and casseroles were the least consumed (2.47/5) followed by margarine/butter, bacon, dressings, oils, fried foods, chips, or olives (2.86/5).
- Participants did not report large amounts of alcohol intake, with 24% reporting they never consume alcoholic beverages and 19% reporting only on special occasions. An additional 14% reported drinking alcohol less than once/week while only 11% reported consuming alcohol 3+ times/week. When drinking did occur, however, it did tend to be heavy with 29% reporting only 1-2 drinks while 33% reported 3-4 drinks, 27% reported 27%, and 12% reported 7+ drinks on days they did drink. Overwhelmingly, hard liquor/mixed drinks were the alcoholic beverage of choice (89%).
- The female freshmen were also asked about their frequency of physical activity (1=0-1 times/week, 2=2-3 times/week, 3=4-5 times/week, 4=6+ times/week).
- The most frequent physical activity was walking to class (3.42/4) and days where they walked at least 10 minutes at a time (3.30/4).
- The least frequent physical activity was vigorous physical activities like heavy lifting, digging, aerobics, or fast bicycling (1.78/4) followed by frequency of moderate physical exercises such as carrying light loads, bicycling at a regular pace, or doubles tennis with walking excluded (1.96/4).
Common Reading Book Selection
All WIU students, faculty, and staff were asked to help select the common reading book that would form a part of the First Year Experience for incoming Fall 2011 freshmen. Of those invited, 618 individuals agree to vote for their preference. (Contact Judy Dallinger, Associate Provost, at J-Dallinger@wiu.edu for more information.)
- The two book options were Denialism by Michael Spector and And Then There's This by Bill Wasik. In addition to providing the publisher's summary of the book, participants were provided a brief book review written by WIU First Year Experience Faculty with Matt Blankenship (Psychology) reviewing Denialism and Stacey Macchi (Communication) reviewing And Then There's This.
- In Denialism, Spector wrote about Americans having come to mistrust institutions and especially the institution of science, and how this mistrust, which Spector views is irrational thinking is not only misguided, but harmful. Hence the subtitle of the book "How Irrational Thinking Hinders Scientific Progress, Harms the Planet, and Threatens Our Lives.
- In And Then There's This, Wasik relates the rapid growth of communication and how it resembles a roller coaster of events with the "news" of today perhaps not even lasting the day as it is rapidly replaced by something more sensational. It is the viral nature of news today that Wasik notes anyone with a computer can start a ripple that turns into a tsunami.
- While both books told a different story, they both focused on perceptions and reactions to them, making it a difficult choice for the 572 individuals who cast their vote. So difficult was the choice that it resulted in a tie, exactly a 50:50 split with 286 votes for each book.
- Ultimately, Wasik's And then There's This was selected as the required reading and an element incorporated in the University Theme of the year, "Teaching and Learning for a New Era."
Campus Recreation Marketing Survey
Campus Recreation invited all Macomb students, faculty, and staff to provide input on current marketing efforts so that these could be improved. Reported results are from the 594 individuals who accepted the opportunity to provide feedback and suggestions. (Contact Stephanie Wyffels at SN-Wyffels@wiu.edu for more information.)
- For students, membership to the Student Recreation Center is included in their student fees. Response were received from 284 students. Faculty and staff, as employees, have the option of purchasing a membership to the Student Recreation Center so that they can take advantage of the facilities. Among the 306 responding faculty and staff, 28% had elected to join the Student Recreation Center, providing 369 user responses while the remaining 225 participants responded only to marketing outreach efforts.
- Of respondents with access to the Student Recreation Center, only 7% never used it. Weekly users were the largest group at 38% followed by daily users (27%) and 13% at least monthly.
- By far the most popular activity at the Student Recreation Center was using the Cardio Machines (72%), while weightlifting was second at 53%, followed by fitness classes (35%) and aquatics (31%).
- For students, the number one reason they used the facility was that they perceived it as being free since membership was included in the fees they pay as an enrolled student. For faculty at staff, being free to use would be the number one reason to gain more employee participation, especially among Civil Service workers (70%) who represented 43% of the employees responding.
- Other than cost, the primary motivators to why they do participate or why they would participate, the type of activity was most important (56%) followed by exercise (52%), time of the event/activity (49%), and friendship (44%). Only 10% felt that competition was a key reason for participating and just 11% felt that prizes were a key attraction. Among faculty and staff who do not participate, their primary added concern was not being comfortable working out around students.
RPTA Course Evaluations - Spring 2011
10 RPTA faculty elected to have one or more of their Spring 2011 course evaluations done online rather than the traditional in-class scantron format. 17 sections of 13 different courses were evaluated by 217 students, including 65% who were RPTA majors. (For more information contact Dale Adkins, RTPA Chair, at KD-Adkins1@wiu.edu.)
Faculty were evaluated on 14 standard criteria using a 5-pt strongly disagree to strongly agree Likert scale.
- Highest course evaluation ratings were 4.31/5 for “was enthusiastic about the course” and 4.23/5 for “was interested in various course topics being taught.”
- While still quite high, the lowest course evaluation rates were 3.85/5 for “explained subjects clearly” and 3.91/5 for “was effective in the presentation of various course topics.”
Factors Affecting Views on Banning Controversial Art
As part of a student research project, Psychology student Erin Hillard surveyed fellow Psychology students regarding the views they held toward the banning of controversial art. In a deeper investigation, the survey also investigated an individual's religious beliefs, political and moral orientation, and views of minority and ethnic groups was an important factor in their views about whether controversial art should be banned. 64 students provided input to the study. (For more information contact Erin's faculty research advisor, Dr. Curtis Dunkel at C-Dunkel@wiu.edu.)
- Beginning with a personal 44 characteristic assessment, using a 5-pt strongly disagree to strongly agree Likert scale, the sample population was most likely to consider themselves "a reliable worker" (4.28/5), "considerate and kind to almost everyone" (4.16/5), and "curious about many different things" (4.16/5); and least like to be one who "starts quarrels with others" (2.00/5), "can be cold and aloof" (2.38/5), and is depressed/blue (2.48/5).
- Moving to their sense of religion/faith, students were asked their level of agreement with 18 statements using a 5-pt strongly disagree to strongly agree Likert scale. Students most agreed that "even though the Bible was written a long time ago, it retains a basic message" (4.30/5) and "my ideology is only one possibility among others" (4.16/5); while they least agreed with "faith is an expression of a weak personality" (2.38/5) and "ultimately, there is only one correct answer to each religious question" (2.60/5).
- As one method of evaluating whether students views about whether controversial art should be banned, the sample population was randomly divided into two groups, one group asked about art that may be insensitive to Christians and the other group asked about art that may be insensitive to Muslims. Both groups were asked to use a 5-pt strongly disagree to strongly agree Likert scale to rate the same 10 questions, differentiated only by whether the questions directly asked about the Christian perspective or the Muslim perspective. There was a wide disparity in the responses between the two groups.
- From the Christian perspective, that random subgroup of participants (33), most agreed that "people have the right to produce art that insults Christians" (3.36/5) and "people have the right to insult Christianity, even if the criticism is offensive (3.30/5); and least agreed that "art that upsets Christians should not be made because it is insensitive to their religion" (1.73/5) and "respect and sensitivity toward other's views, like Christians, is more important that freedom of expression" (2.30/5).
- From the Muslim perspective, that random subgroup of participants (30), most agreed that "people should not insult other religious views, like those of Muslims" (3.77/5) and "we should be sensitive to people of other cultures or those who hold different values and therefore even if I am not Muslim I think anti-Muslim art should be banned" (3.30/5); and least agreed that "Mohammad is sacred to Muslims, and we should all be made to respect this" (2.70/5) and "people have the right to insult Islam, even if the criticism is offensive (2.83/5).
Course Evaluations for Online EIS Spring 2011 Courses
In Spring 2011, 4 faculty in the Department of Educational & Interdisciplinary Studies opted to have their course evaluations conducted via online survey technology with 59 0f 61 responding students providing input. (Contact Office Support Specialist Lisa Turke at LA-Turke@wiu.edu for more information.)
- On a 12-question evaluation of online faculty performance using a 5-pt strongly disagree to strongly agree Likert scale, mean scores from 34 student ratings ranged from a low of 4.38/5 for "the instructor graded and returned tests in a timely manner" to a high of 4.76/5 for "the instructor was respectful to all during the course."
- In terms of satisfaction with online courses in general, using the same 5-pt strongly disagree to strongly agree Likert scale, students has the highest agreement that "the delivery of the online course material was pertinent to the overall course objectives" at 4.44/5, and in least agreement that "I enjoy taking online courses" at 3.85/5.
- On a 17-question evaluation of ground faculty performance using a 5-pt strongly disagree to strongly agree Likert scale, mean scores from 13 student ratings ranged from a low of 1.54/5 for "the instructor graded and returned tests in a timely manner" to a high of 4.46/5 for "the instructor demonstrated understandable oral and written English."
Student Interest in Summer School
The Summer School Committee asked WIU students what types and formats of classes they would like to see during summer school so that a more effective summer school offering could be planned. 645 students responded to the survey with 626 providing comment. (For more information contact Denise Gravitt of the Department of Engineering Technology at DD-Gravitt@wiu.edu or Renee Polubinsky of the Department of Kinesiology at RL-Polubinsky@wiu.edu.)
- Among participating students, 59% said they had never taken a summer school class at Western. Of those who had, 26% had taken an online WIU summer course and 93% of those said they would take more online summer courses, and 24% had taken a WIU face-to-face summer course with 82% saying they would take more face-to-face summer courses.
- 75% of participating students said they most want courses in their major to be offered during the summer, while 18% preferred general education courses and 8% wanted electives to be offered.
- 56% of students said they’d prefer online summer school courses while 44% wanted traditional face-to-face courses to be offered. However, 64% did indicate interest in hybrid course offerings where most of the course was online but some face-to-face meetings were also included.
- When asked to indicate various reasons why they would consider taking summer school classes, 76% said to complete graduation requirements early and 73% said to lighten their course load during the academic year. Other reasons selected were “to make up classes” at 25%, “to avoid another professor who teaches the course” at 20%, and “to retake classes” at 13%.
- When asked about barriers to taking summer school classes at Western, the top reasons cited were “the courses I need are not offered” at 64%, “the courses I want are not offered online” at 48%, and “I have to work a job during the summer” at 43%.
Online Writing Centers
Nanelle Norcross conducted a survey about online writing center resources at universities nationwide as part of her Master’s thesis “Virtual Space in University Writing Centers” and to compile a best practices synopsis to publish and share with other writing center professionals. 106 professionals from an identified 32 different universities with student populations from under 1,000 to over 31,000 responded to the survey with all 106 providing comment. (For more information contact Nanelle’s thesis advisor, Bradley Dilger, in the Department of English & Journalism at CB-Dilger@wiu.edu.)
- While 57% of respondents indicated they had only 1 on-campus writing center, 21% had 2-3 campus locations, 18% had 4-6 campus locations, and 4% had 7-10 campus writing center locations.
- 68% of respondents said their university offered online writing center services with an overall average of 69% of tutorials available via asynchronous online access and 48% of tutorials available via synchronous online access.
- In providing online tutorials, 61% of providers use email with attachments, while 24% take advantage of their learning content systems such as Blackboard, and 10% have purchased specific software solutions. In addition, 46% indicated they used a variety of other options and combinations including Go-to-Meeting, Adobe Connect, eTutor, Second Life, Google Docs, and Skype.
- For the 68% who do offer online tutorials, 51% rated their online tutorials as Good (still working out the kinks, but believe online services are worthwhile), 32% rated them as Very Good (great investment in expanding writing center services), and 17% rated them as Fair (somewhat useful, but don’t think the online tutorials have significantly enhanced writing center services. No participants rated their online tutorials as Poor (not at all what we had hoped for, bad investment of resources).
- For those 32% who do not offer online tutorials, when asked why not, 44% said their current writing center services were sufficient, 37% said there was no interest among writing center staff to expand services, and 30% said their was no money in the budget to do so. In addition, 44% provided other explanations including a small campus with an easily accessible writing center and a small campus with most students living on campus, while it was also noted that they were currently planning to add online functionality.
Stipes 4th Floor Office Relocation Views
The Stipes Space Force Task Force surveyed College of Business and Technology faculty with offices in Stipes Hall about their preferences regarding some proposed office relocations designed to facilitate department strengths, communication, collegiality, and convenient access to departmental resources. 70 faculty responded to the survey with 68 providing comment. ( For more information contact Joe Dobson of the Department of Management & Marketing at J-Dobson@wiu.edu.)
- 51% of responding faculty currently had a suite-window office, 24% had a suite-non-window office, and 25% had corridor offices.
- Given 3 options of completing a move if it were to take place, 58.5% indicated that their preference would be for moves to be made over time as offices became available due to retirements and normal turnover. The least preferred option, with only 11.3% indicating it as their first choice, was to complete all moves within 2 years, while the remaining 30.2% preferred to complete all moves during Summer 2011.
- Ranking 3 specific office preferences on a 5-pt strongly disagree to strongly agree Likert scale, the most common preference was for “moving to a shared suite with faculty from more than one department over moving to a corridor office” at 3.78/5, followed by “being in a shared suite with faculty from more than one department is acceptable to me” at 3.29/5, with “being in a shared suite with faculty from more than one department is acceptable to me, even if there are no support staff in that suite” being preferred the least at 2.90/5.
- With 2 options for moving, using a 5-pt strongly disagree to strongly agree Likert scale, faculty supported “I would prefer staying in my office over moving to another office in the corridor” at 3.88/5 to “I would prefer moving to an office in a suite over staying in my current office” at 2.53/5.
- Participants were also present drawings of 4 different office/department reorganization options, rating them on a 5-pt “do not prefer” to “prefer” Likert scale. The current arrangement was strongly preferred at 3.95/5 over any of the other 3 options which ranged from 2.62-3.18/5.
EDUCAUSE Students and Use of Computing Technology
Students were asked to participate in a survey adapted, with permission, from the national EDUCAUSE Center for Applied Research, regarding Western’s effort to use technology effectively in teaching and in meeting the technology needs of Western students. 552 students responded to the survey with 528 providing comment. (For more information contact Richard Chamberlain in University Technology at RE-Chamberlain@wiu.edu.)
- 85% of students reported owning a full-sized laptop computer, 50% owned a desktop computer, 48% owned a handheld device, 16% owned a lightweight netbook or tablet computer, and 9% owned a dedicated e-book reader.
- The primary uses of their handheld devises were text messaging at 87%, place/receive telephone calls at 87%, and check information (news, weather, sports, specific facts, etc.) at 83%
- When asked to use a 5-pt strongly disagree to strongly agree Likert scale regarding use of technology in class, these was a slight agreement (3.25/5) that instructors should have the authority to forbid the use of laptops, netbooks, tablets, or handheld devices during class time. There was a strong indication of not using these technology devices in the classroom, with only a 2.29/5 agreement rating for using them for course activities and an even lower 2.02/5 agreement rating for using them for non-course activities.
- While students indicated a wide range of using any device Internet activity, from less than 1 to more than 100 hours/week, the overall mean use of technology to access the Internet was in the 21-25 hr/wk range.
- When asked to use a 7-pt strongly frequency scale from never to daily regarding the use of technology for any purpose, including school, work, or recreation, the most common uses were for text messaging (5.97/7), downloading or streaming web-based music or videos (4.53/7), spreadsheet applications (4.19/7), and presentation software (4.16/7).
Faculty Use of Mobile Computing
The Mobile Computing Task Force asked WIU faculty to participate in a survey exploring how they use mobile devices in the classroom. 195 faculty responded to the survey with 183 providing comment. (For more information contact Sean Cordes in the Malpass Library at CS-Cordes@wiu.edu.)
- 16% of faculty indicated that they use some time of handheld device that can access the Internet as part of their classwork in at least one of the courses they teach, with mobile technology being most common (52%) in classes under 30 students, though 20% of faculty use mobile technology in classes of 50 or more students.
- The most common factors that keep faculty from using mobile technology in the classroom, or from using it more, were “network connection too slow” and “limited access to the network,” both at 40%.
- While 21% of faculty said their students never use the Internet with a handheld device as part of their coursework, 25% said their students use the Internet with a handheld device as part of coursework on a daily basis.
- The most common Internet activities faculty use with their class via handheld devices were “email” at 86%, “check information (news, specific facts, etc.)” at 64%, and “download or watch videos online” at 50%.
- 96% of faculty felt that over the next 3 years they expect their use of Internet technology with handheld devices to increases, including 35% who said it will greatly increase.
Benefits & Barriers to Physical Activity in College Students - Spring 2011
Dr. Amanda Divin of the WIU Department of Health Sciences surveyed students about their expected outcomes, benefits, and barriers to physical activity. A goal of learning about these issues is to enable researchers and campus personnel to better tailor programs aimed at increasing physical activity on college campuses. 488 students responded to the survey with 454 providing comment. (For more information contact Dr. Divin at A-Divin@wiu.edu.)
- While 6% of respondents indicated they were student-athletes, 15% said they participated on an intramural team, and overall, students exercised a mean of 2.74 days per week with an interpolated mean amount of daily exercise being 58 minutes.
- 80% of respondents said they were active in high school, with 74% of these staying active primarily by playing sports. Overall, 73% reported that their parents encouraged them to exercise as they were growing up.
- Of the 81% of respondents who exercised at least 1 day per week, 75% used the WIU Rec Center for their workouts, 23% were involved in a strength training (weight lifting) program, and 30% were involved in a cardiovascular program.
- On a 5-pt strongly disagree to strongly agree Likert scale regarding personal benefits of physical activity, students most agreed with “for good health” and 4.51/5, and least agreed with “for companionship” at 2.95/5.
- On a 5-pt strongly disagree to strongly agree Likert scale regarding personal barriers to physical activity, students most agreed with “I’m too busy” at 3.70/5 and least agreed with “I am scared of injury” at 1.75/5.
Perceived Stress Levels and Health Promoting Behaviors in College Students - Spring 2011
Dr. Amanda Divin of the WIU Department of Health Sciences surveyed students about their perceived stress levels, recent life experiences, and health promoting behaviors to study the relationship among these variables in college students. 533 students responded to the survey with 492 providing comment in this pilot which may be expanded to other universities. (For more information contact Dr. Divin at A-Divin@wiu.edu.)
- Of the respondents, 51% worked, with 53% of those working on-campus. Of all working respondents, 68% worked 20 or fewer hours per week. • 53% of students were single or casually dating, 36%were in a relationship, 8% were married, and 2% described their relationship status as other.
- On the 5-point Perceived Stress scale, the most common stress feeling during the last month was "felt nervous and 'stressed'" at 3.88/5 ,while the least common was "'found that you could not cope with all the things you had to do" at 2.75/5.
- On the 4-point Inventory of College Students' Recent Life Experiences scale, the most common stressful experience during the last month was "too many things to do at once" at 3.05/4, while the least common was "conflict with teaching assistant(s)" at 1.23/4.
- On the 4-point Healthy Promoting Lifestyle Profile-II scale, the most commonly experienced healthy behavior during the last month was "am aware of what is important to me in life" at 3.13/4, while the least common was "attend educational programs on personal health care" at 1.46/4.
Faculty Evaluation of President Goldfarb - Spring 2011
Each of the 656 Faculty Senate eligible members was invited to participate in the annual evaluation of the President's performance. Of these, 264 provided input in the Total Campus Enterprise; Academic Goals; Personnel, Faculty Relations, and Campus Issues components of the President's responsibilities. (Contact Annette Hamm, the Faculty Senate Office Manager, at AE-Hamm@wiu.edu for more information.)
- As this is a confidential evaluation process, the Presidentiall Evaluation Committee will produce a summary to share with the President and Board of Trustees. The Faculty Senate has made their summary report available on their website (www.wiu.edu/facultysenate) or you can download the President Evaluation report by clicking this link.
Faculty Evaluation of Provost Thomas - Spring 2011
Each of the 656 Faculty Senate eligible members was invited to participate in the annual evaluation of the Provost's performance. Of these, 264 provided input in the Total Campus Enterprise; Academic Goals; Personnel, Faculty Relations, and Campus Issues components of the Provost's responsibilities. ( Contact Annette Hamm, the Faculty Senate Office Manager, at AE-Hamm@wiu.edu for more information .)
- As this is a confidential evaluation process, the Provostal Evaluation Committee will produce a summary to share with the Provost and the President. The Faculty Senate has made their summary report available on their website (www.wiu.edu/facultysenate) or you can download the Provost Evaluation report by clicking this link.
Study Abroad Program Evaluation - Fall 2010 Abroad
Of the 64 students who participated in study abroad during Fall 2010, 14 provided input regarding their experience in Argentina, Australia, Costa Rica, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Spain, and the United Kingdom. (Contact Emily Gorlewski in the Center for International Studies at EJ-Gorlewski@wiu.edu for more information.)
- While friends, academic advisors, and faculty members were each 15% of those who had recommended study abroad, 38% of the students participating had no outside influence, having just has an interest on their own.
- Studying abroad definitely does not always require students to use a foreign language. In fact, only 36% of students reported needing a to use a foreign language, and 75% of those who did were well prepared before leaving and all 100% made good progress in their language skills during their study abroad experience.
- Personal expenses varied widely depending on the students interests in travel while studying abroad, ranging from less that $500 to more than $4,000, but the average was about $2500.
- All students said that their study abroad experience influenced their ability to cope with an adapt to new and different situations and increased their desire to travel abroad, with 90% saying it altered their world view and 80% said it influenced their future plans. With a generally positive experience, 78% said they would recommend their specific study abroad program to other students.
Alcohol Use - Campus Norms (Phases 1, 2, & 3) - Spring 2011
WIU Psychology professors, Dr. David Lane and Dr. Colin Harbke, invited students taking psychology courses to participate in a 3-stage survey about their alcohol use and their perception of campus-wide alcohol use. Stage 1 involved an intensive 30 minute survey, followed at 2-week intervals by much shorter 10-minute Stage 2 and Stage 3 surveys to determine changes in alcohol use and perception over time as the semester progressed. (Contact David Lane at DJ-Lane@wiu.edu or Colin Harbke at CR-Harbke@wiu.edu for more information.)
- 187 students participated in the initial background Phase 1 of the study, 75 participated in the follow-up Phase 2 of the study, and 52 participated in the replication Phase 3 of the study.
- In Phase 1 of the study, 57% of students indicated that they drink socially (with others), while 13% drink both socially on their own, and 4% drank heavily, with 1% indicating they had a drinking problem. In addition, 18% said they rarely drank alcohol and 7% had never tried alcohol.
- Of the 93% who drank at least rarely in Phase 1, 63% had consumed 1 or more alcoholic drinks during the preceding full week. Yet, only 11% felt that they were very age-typical in terms of drinking behavior while 40% felt their drinking behavior was very atypical of persons their age.
- Those in Phase 1 who did drink were asked to rate 20 reasons for drinking on a 5-point scale from 1=Almost Never or Never to 5=Almost Always or Always. The top reasons for drinking were because it's fun (3.42), to celebrate a special occasion with friends (3.36), and to be sociable (3.32). The least common reasons for drinking were so that others won't kid you about not drinking (1.29), because it helps when you feel depressed or nervous (1.58), and because your friends pressure you to drink (1.59).
- When those in Phase 1 were asked about their future drinking intentions, 12% said they intended to drink a lot in the next 2 weeks while 24% admitted they intended to get drunk in the next 2 weeks. Drinking intentions had increased to some extent in Phase 2 with 16% saying they intended to drink a lot in the next 2 weeks and 30% admitting they intended to get drunk in the next 2 weeks. By Phase 3, drinking intentions had declined somewhat but were still above Phase 1 levels, with 14% saying they intended to drink a long in the next 2 weeks and 27% admitting that they intended to get drunk in the next 2 weeks.
Faculty Senate Committee Interest
The Faculty Senate again took advantage of confidential online survey technology to solicit interest among faculty on serving on the 41 standing councils and committees, as well as search and ad hoc committees that are periodically formed on a short-term basis. Based on expressed interest, the Committee on Committees filled the many vacancies for the 2011-2012 academic year. (Contact Annette Hamm, the Faculty Senate Office Manager, at AE-Hamm@wiu.edu for more information, or visit the faculty senate website at www.wiu.edu/FacultySenate for more information on the Senate and the various committees and councils.)
- Of the 658 faculty members eligible to serve on the Senate's councils and committees, 211 expressed their interest in filling 77 standing committee openings and/or serving on search committees and ad hoc committees as needed.
Graduate & Family Housing Satisfaction Survey
Students living in Graduate & Family Housing (East Village, Lamoine Village, University Village) were asked to provide input on their satisfaction with their housing choice, with 52 students agreeing to participate. (Contact Tera Monroe, the Director of Residence Life, at T-Monroe@wiu.edu for more information.)
- Among the 54 questions students were asked to rate from 1=Strongly Disagree to 5=Strongly Agree.
- Students most agreed with feeling safe in their apartment (4.36), having respect for other students living in GFH (4.24), fellow neighbors respecting their privacy (4.06) and feeling safe outside their apartment (4.02). They were also satisfied (4.02) with using their cell phone as their primary phone.
- Students least agreed with that they utilized a residence hall dining plan option (1.68), that they utilized Rocky Dollars on campus (1.88), and that they had attended a Community Council Even for GFH (2.08). In keeping with their satisfaction with relying on their cell phone, utilizing the landline phone service in their apartment also received a low level of agreement at 2.48.
- In terms of looking for variations among the three GFH villages:
- Among the 36 responding Lamoine Village residents, they verified that they felt safe in their apartment (4.30), had respect for other students living in GFH (4.15), and that they felt safe outside their apartment (4.06). However, the indicated that their fellow neighbors were less likely to respect their privacy (3.97). However, they indicated they felt less safe outside their apartment (3.91).
- Among the 11 responding East Village residents, they verified that they felt safe in their apartment (4.55), had respect for other students living in GFH (4.45), and felt their fellow neighbors respected their privacy (4.27). However, they indicated they felt less safe outside their apartment (3.91).
- Among the 5 responding University Village residents, they verified that they felt safe in their apartment (4.33), had respect for other students living in GFH (4.33), and felt their fellow neighbors respected their privacy (4.17). They also tended to feel safe outside their apartment (4.00).
Training & Development Needs Survey
The Office of Human Resources invited campus employees to provide input on the types of training they would like to see offered, as well as when they would most like to have training offered. The input from the 602 faculty and staff who responded will be used to develop campus training opportunities. ( Contact Anita Sells in Human Resources at AL-Sells@wiu.edu for more information.)
- Among the respondents, 42% indicated they were Civil Service (or exempt) employees, 33% were faculty members, and 25% were COAP employees, with 80% of all respondents indicating they had participated in at least one on-campus training opportunity in the past.
- A majority (53%) of respondents had no specific preference of time of year for attending trainings, while summer was preferred by 30%, including by 20% of faculty who would generally not be on contract during the summer.
- The majority (54%) of respondents indicated they would prefer quarterly training, while 26% would like to attend training on a monthly basis, with a strong preference (70%) for training opportunities being limited to 2 hour sessions and during the work day, not on Saturdays (preferred by only 8%) and not in the evening (preferred by only 5%).
- While participants could select multiple options among the 35 topics listed, overall, the most interest was generated in computer skills training (53%), followed by management/leadership (35%), stress reduction (34%), and career development (33%).
- Among Civil Service (and exempt) employees, computer skill training topped the list at 60%, followed by civil service processes such as position audits (46%), career development (45%), and stress reduction (42%).
- Among faculty, computer skills was again the top choice (51%), followed by mentoring (27%), negotiation skills (25%), and management/leadership (25%).
- Among COAP employees, management/leadership topped the training interest at 43%, but again computer skills training interest was high (41%), followed by project management (38%) and supervision and efficiency/effectiveness (both at 36%).
Library "Short Course" Evaluation - Spring 2011
Faculty members frequently bring their students to the library during a class session so that campus librarians can provide an overview of library resources and explain how to effectively and efficiently use these resources. At the end of each session, the students are encouraged to complete a brief evaluation of their learning experience to help evaluate the librarian's teaching effort. During Spring 2011, nine librarians taught these 1-class meeting "short courses" which were evaluated by 894 students across 19 disciplines, with English representing the primary department with 66% of the responses. (Contact the library dean, Dr. Phyllis Self, at P-Self@wiu.edu for more information.)
- The library faculty consistently rated high across all eight evaluation questions, achieve a high of 4.53 on a 5-point scale for being knowledgeable about their material and a low of 4.23 for encouraging student questions and participation, for an overall rating of 4.40 on scale from 1=Strongly Disagree to 5=Strongly Agree
Personality & Emotion - Spring 2011
Psychology students were invited to participate in an online survey to study about personality and emotions, with 203 students choosing to participate. (Contact Professor Scott Hemenover at SH-Hemenover@wiu.edu for more information).
- Using a 7-point scale where 1=Strongly Disagree to 7= Strongly Agree, students were asked a variety of questions regarding their emotions.
- When students are experiencing a bad mood or emotion that they want to maintain, it is most often because they want to motivate themselves to work hard (4.84/7) and least often because they want to influence other' moods and behavior (3.45/7).
- When students are experiencing a good mood or emotion that they want to get rid of, it is most often because they want to be considerate and respectful of others (5.42/7) and least often because they want to eliminate having bad feelings (e.g., guilt) about the good mood (4.01/7).
- Using a 5-point scale where 1=Strongly Disagree to 5= Strongly Agree, students were asked to evaluate how well a list of 240 statements described themselves.
- The top 5 responses which they most strongly agreed with were: how I feel about things is important to me (4.183), I try to be courteous to everyone I meet (4.182), I generally try to be thoughtful and considerate (4.166), I can be sarcastic and cutting when I need to be (4.130), and I think it is interesting to learn and develop new hobbies (4.088).
- The bottom 5 responses which they most strongly disagreed with were: I don't get much pleasure from chatting with people (1.902), I believe letting students hear controversial speakers can only confuse and mislead them (1.990), I rarely experience strong emotions (2.135), some people think of me as cold and calculating (2.205), and social gatherings are usually boring to me (2.210).
Identity Protection Awareness
All 2,081 WIU employees were asked to participate in an Identity Protection Awareness survey to determine the extent of use of sensitive data (Social Security Numbers, credit card numbers, etc.) to help WIU determine the extent and type of use of sensitive data on campus and formulate training needs to ensure that the identity and privacy of all WIU students and employees, as well as any individual who conducts business with WIU. Response was good with 859 employees providing input. (Contact Michael Rodriguez, Chief Technology Security Officer, at MA-Rodriguezr@wiu.edu for more information.)
- While 52% of employees indicated that they did not use any of the sensitive data aspects, 48% did use sensitive data, with most of these using full Social Security numbers (67%), followed by 53% who used full credit card numbers. In addition, 32% used full Employer Identification Numbers and 16% used full Individual Tax Identification Numbers.
- In total, 101 different departments or units indicated using sensitive data. These areas will receive follow-up surveys to help assess their need for using and how they use sensitive data so that awareness education can be provided to minimize the use of sensitive data, and where it is needed, to ensure that identity and privacy are protected.
Bachelors in General Studies (former BOT/BA) Survey (Current Students, Alumni, and Committee Members)
In an effort to better understand the effectiveness of the Bachelors in General Studies program in meeting the students needs, an online survey was conduct to seek input from current BGS students (148 of 391 responded), BGS alumni (369 of 1,369 responded ), and the BGS Advisory Committee (14 of 24 responded). (Contact Rick Carter, Director of Distance Learning, International Studies, and Outreach at R-Carter@wiu.edu for more information.)
- When asked the various reasons they chose the BGS degree program, the top 3 responses among current BGS students were availability of online courses to fulfill WIU degree requirements (71%), flexibility in academic requirements (58%), and credit for previous college work (54%).
- Among BGS alumni, the top 3 reasons they gave for choosing the BGS program were credit for previous college work (71%), flexibility in academic requirements (60%), and availability of online courses to fulfill WIU degree requirements.
- 91% of current BGS students agreed that the BGS degree program met their educational goals, 86% agreed that they were finding courses that met their educational goals, and 96% agreed that the flexibility of the BGS degree program was suitable to meeting their needs.
- Among BGS alumni, 91% felt the BGS program met their educational goals, 94% said they were able to enroll in WIU courses that met their educational needs, and 98% found the flexibility of the BGS program suitable to meet their needs.
- When asked the various course options they are using in meeting their degree completion requirements, the top 3 responses among current BGS students were online courses (81%), courses from other colleges (63%), and WIU-Macomb courses (43%).
- Among BGS alumni, the top 3 options they reported using to meet their degree completion requirements were courses from another college (69%), online courses (48%), and WIU-Macomb courses (46%).
- When looking beyond their BGS degree, 62% of current BGS students said that their desire to go beyond a baccalaureate degree has increased as a result of their BGS program experience and 83% said that they would be interested if a graduate program similar to the BGS degree program were available at WIU.
- Among BGS alumni, 62% said they would be interested in a BGS-type graduate program if it became available at WIU.
- BGS alumni also reported that the BGS degree is comprehensive and has academic integrity (94%) and 83% said they would still choose to pursue a BGS degree if they had it to do all over again.
- The BGS Advisory Committee felt the BGS degree was a viable alternative for the place-bound working adult (93%), The Committee also felt that they played in important role in maintaining quality standards for the BGS degree program (93%) and that sufficient policies and procedures exist to assure quality administration of the program (79%). Consequently, 79% felt the BGS degree had academic integrity and 86% felt the students had the opportunity to design a well-rounded curriculum that met their needs.
Fire Administration Program Survey
The 164 WIU students with minors in Fire Science/Administration were invited to participate in a survey regarding their satisfaction with the program, as well as their thoughts on advancing the program to a major rather than just a minor. Of 63 students who responded, 62 agreed to participate in the confidential online survey. (Contact Scott Walker at HS-Walker@wiu.edu for more information.)
- 80% of the respondents were interested in a career in Fire Administration.
- 75% said that had a Bachelor's degree in Fire Science/Administration been offered when they chose a major, they would have been very interested with another 23% indicating they would have been somewhat interested.
- 51% said they would even consider changing their major now if a Fire Science/Administration major were offered now.
- Among respondents, 75% were traditional M-F day students, while 21% were non-traditional online students and 3% were non-traditional M-F evening students. 72% were currently employed, and of these, 29% were employed full-time vs. 71% employed part-time.
- Of these who were employed at least part-time, 37% were employed with a Fire Department, 9% were employed with Emergency Services, while the majority (53%) were employed elsewhere,
- In terms of location preference for courses, Macomb (1.42) ranked slightly above Online (1.84), both of which strongly outdistanced 3rd choice Quad Cities (2.87). In terms of location preference for course type, traditional M-F daytime courses were strongly preferred (1.68) over Online (2.62), 1 evening/week (2.76), and Hybrid (2.70) courses. Macomb ranked slightly above Online, both of which strongly outdistanced 3rd choice Quad Cities.
LEJA Graduate Program Survey
The 57 current LEJA graduate students and 60 recent LEJA graduate alumni were invited to provide input regarding their satisfaction with the LEJA graduate program. Of 78 students who responded, 75 agreed to participate in the confidential online survey. (Contact Jill Myers, the LEJA Graduate Advisor, at JJ-Myers@wiu.edu for more information.)
- Among respondents, 91% were currently employed and 56% had completed the program. Between both current students and alumni, a clear majority (62%) were non-traditional students who took weekend classes, while 20% were non-traditional students taking M-F night courses and 18% were traditional M-F day students.
- Not surprisingly, 71% of respondents indicated that Law Enforcement was their primary area of interest, but with the option to also choose other areas, other areas were also popular, including homeland security (26%), juvenile justice (20%), and criminalistics (20%).
- When asked what potential new course options they would be interested in, terrorism and administrative management/budgeting were at the top, each with 51%, while cyber security and grant writing both followed closely at 49%.
- In terms of preferred course locations, the Macomb campus and Online tied for preferred (2.51), followed by the Chicagoland (2.81) and Quad Cities (2.83) areas, which strongly outdistanced the Springfield area (3.87). In terms of preferred course scheduling, the current 3 -weekend format was most favored (2.29), followed by 1 evening/week (2.95), hybrid (3.17), online (3.23), and Saturdays (3.47), with traditional M-F day classes (4.55) a distant 6th choice.
- In terms of improving the LEJA Graduate Program website, all suggested items were desired, but when having to select just one, the two items that clearly rose to the top of the desired list were future course offerings (48%) and thesis preparation assistance (46%).
Personality & Emotion - Fall 2010
Scott Hemenover, from WIU's Department of Psychology, continued his investigation into the relationship between personality and emotion by inviting students enrolled in undergraduate and graduate Psychology courses to participate in an online survey. 89 undergraduate students participated. (Contact Scott Hemenover at SH-Hemenover@wiu.edu for more information.)
- When asked why they try to hold onto a bad mood or emotion, using a 7-point scale from 1=Strongly Disagree to 7= Strongly Agree to rate 12 options, students most often said it was because they want to communicate their need for help, support, or special consideration (4.71) and least often because the wanted to explore the ramifications of a negative worldview (3.31).
- When asked why they try to get rid of a good mood or emotion, using the same 7-point scale to rate 12 options, students most often said it was because they want to be considerate and respectful of others (5.40) and least often because they want to achieve spiritual betterment (3.95).
- When asked to rate 240 personality statements on a 5-point scale from 1=Strongly Disagree to 5=Strongly Agree, the 3 with the highest level of agreement were I try to be courteous to everyone I meet (4.14), I generally try to be thoughtful and considerate (4.09), I am sometimes completely absorbed in music I am listening to (4.06). The 3 with the lowest level of agreement were I don't get much pleasure from chatting with people (2.01), I have never literally jumped for joy (2.01), and many people think of me as somewhat cold and distant (2.02).
- When asked questions about their emotional experience and their emotional expressions using a 7-point scale from 1=Strongly Disagree to 7= Strongly Agree to rate 10 options, students most often said that when they want to feel more positive emotion (e.g., joy or amusement) they change what they are thinking about (5.14) and least often said that when they are feeling positive emotions they are careful not to express them (3.14).
- When asked to rate 84 statements about how they feel about themselves and their lives on a 7-point scale from 1=Strongly Disagree to 7=Strongly Agree, the 3 with the highest level of agreement were it is important to me to be a good listener when close friends talk to me about their problems (4.90), in general I feel that I continue to learn more about myself as time goes by (4.79), and I enjoy personal and mutual conversations with family members or friends (4.77 ). The 3 with the lowest level of agreement were I sometimes feel as if I've done all there is to do in life (2.49), I used to set goals for myself but now that seems like a waste of time (2.52), and I am not interested in activities that will expand my horizons (2.54).
WIU-QC VoIP Transition Satisfaction
The 124 WIU-QC faculty and staff were asked about their impressions and satisfaction regarding the September 2010 transition to VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) telephone service. 33 employees provided input. (Contact Kristi Mindrup at KS-Mindrup@wiu.edu for more information.)
- After having been using VoIP for a couple of months prior to the survey evaluation, no one reported being dissatisfied and 45% said they were very satisfied, 41% said they were satisfied, 10% said they were somewhat satisfied, and 3% were neutral in their response.
- 74% of WIU-QC employees rated the advance communication regarding the VoIP transition at useful or very useful. Only 26% rated it as neutral and none rated it as useless or very useless.
- 94% of WIU-QC employees indicated they received the 1-page "cheat sheet" in their mailboxes that provided an overview of using VoIP. Of these, 80% rated the "cheat sheet" as useful to very useful, while 17% rated it as neutral and 3% rated it as useless or very useless.
- 38% of WIU-QC employees reported they had viewed at least some of the online VoIP resources that were posted on the WIU-QC website, and of these 58% viewed the online VoIP training video. 75% rated the online VoIP resources as useful to very useful and 25% rated them as neutral, while none rated them as useless or very useless. All 100% rated the online VoIP training video as useful, with 57% rating it as very useful.
- 78% of WIU-QC employees attended one of the VoIP training sessions offered by WIU-QC technology staff, with 80% rating the training as useful to very useful, 16% rating it as neutral, and 4% rating it as useless to very useless.
FYE Faculty Input on Semester Difference
The Committee on FYE Classes sought the input of 157 faculty who had taught FYE courses regarding and difference in the way they approached Fall FYE classes compared to Spring FYE class. 54 FYE faculty provided input. (Contact Judi Dallinger at J-Dallinger@wiu.edu for more information.)
- In Fall FYE courses, 37% of faculty said 0-10% of class time is dedicated to FYE-program specific content while 39% of faculty indicated 11-20% of class time was FYE-specific, while just 25% said more than 20% of class time and as much as 60% was FYE-specific. In Spring FYE courses, 40% of faculty said 0-10% of class time is dedicated to FYE-program specific content while 44% of faculty indicated 11-20% of class time was FYE-specific, while just 16% said more than 20% of class time and as much as 60% was FYE-specific.
- In terms of differences between Fall and Spring FYE courses, 43% of FYE faculty said that there was a difference in the co-curricular activities (including social activities), 43% said there was a difference in content on transition to "college life," 30% said there was a difference in the role of the peer mentor, and 15% said there was a difference in the use of the FYE common reading.
Benefits & Barriers to Physical Activity in College Students - Fall 2010
Amanda Divin, a professor in Western's Department of Health Sciences, invited 10,378 Macomb students to participate in a survey regarding benefits of and barriers to physical activity among college students. 454 student agreed to participate. (Contact Amanda Divin at A-Divin@wiu.edu for more information.)
- Among participants, 63% were female; grade level was 20% freshmen, 14% sophomores, 20% juniors, 29% seniors, 15% graduate students, and 2% other. While just 6% of respondents were student-athletes, 15% participated in intramural sports. However, in high school, 74% played team sports.
- 80% of respondents said they were physically active in high school, including 73% who lifted weights or engaged in strength training, and 73% said their parents encouraged them to exercise when they were a child. Now in college, 19% didn't exercise at all, 47% exercised 1-3 days/week, 31% exercised 4-6 days/week, and 3% exercised daily.
- Of those who do exercise at least 1 day/week, 75% use the Student Rec Center for their workouts but only 23% are involved in any strength training and only 30% are involved in a cardiovascular program. On days they exercise, 46% of students exercise for 30-60 minutes, but 20% exercise for less than 30 minutes while 23% exercise for 60-90 minutes and 12% exercise for 90 or more minutes.
- When asked to rate 12 reasons why they exercise using a 5-point scale from 1=Strongly Disagree to 5=Strongly Agree, the top reasons for exercising were for good health (4.51) and to stay in shape (4.51). By far the least common reasons for exercising was for companionship (2.95), with the next least common being for fun and enjoyment rating nearly a full point higher (3.72).
- When asked to rate 18 reasons for not exercising using a 5-point scale from 1=Strongly Disagree to 5=Strongly Agree, the top reasons were I'm too busy (3.70) and I don't have enough time (3.60). The least common reasons were I'm scared of injury (1.75) and there is a lack of facilities (1.87).
Perceived Stress Levels and Health Promoting Behaviors in College Students - Fall 2010
Amanda Divin, a professor in Western's Department of Health Sciences, invited 10,378 Macomb students to participate in a survey regarding perceived stress and health promoting behaviors in college students. 492 student agreed to participate. (Contact Amanda Divin at A-Divin@wiu.edu for more information.)
- Among participants, 63% were female, 51% lived on-campus, 68% were enrolled in at least 13 credit hours during Fall 2010, 51% had a job with 53% of those working on campus, and just 4% were involved in intercollegiate athletics with 72% of those on scholarship, creating a rather representative student sample.
- 88% of respondents said they had a test or major assignment that was do within 1 week before or after their participating in the survey, thus indicating a potentially high level of stress. In terms of their perceived stress, students were asked to evaluate the frequency of 10 stress reactions on a 5-point scale from 1=Never to 5=Very Often. The most common stress reactions were feeling nervous or stressed (3.88) and felt confident about your ability to handle your personal problems (2.62). The least common stress reactions were found that you could not cope with all the things you had to do (2.75) and felt difficulties were piling up so high that you could not overcome them (2.97).>
- Participants were also asked to rate how 49 different college student recent life experiences were a part of their lives on a 4-point scale from 1=Not at all a part of my life to 4=Very much a part of my life. The experiences most frequently cited as being a major part of their lives were too many things to do at once (3.05), a lot of responsibilities (3.02), and important decisions about your career (2.87). The experiences least frequently cited as being a major part of their lives were conflict with teaching assistants (1.23), social conflicts over smoking (1.28), and dissatisfaction with your reading ability (1.38).
- And participants were asked to rate how often do 52 healthy promoting lifestyle factors on a 4-point scale from 1=Never to 4=Routinely. The most common health promoting factors were am aware of what is important to me in life (3.13), looking forward to the future (3.07), and maintain meaningful and fulfilling relationships with others (3.04). The least common health promoting factors were attend educational programs on personal health care (1.46), practice relaxation or mediation for15-20 minutes each day (1.61), and check my pulse rate when exercising (1.63).
Alcohol Use - Campus Norms (Phases 1, 2, & 3) - Fall 2010
WIU Psychology professors David Lane and Colin Harbke invited students in the Psychology program to provide input regarding their alcohol use to gain information about the norms of student alcohol consumption. In a 3-phase study conducted during Fall 2010, students were first asked a wide range of background questions about their alcohol experience and exposure. Students who had completed this first survey phase were then asked to complete a Phase 2 follow-up about the alcohol use, and then a few week later, to complete a replication Phase 3 so that alcohol use patterns over time could be discerned. Students were assigned "Sona codes" to enable researchers to track students longitudinally without enabling the researchers to know who the students were. (Contact David Lane at DJ-Lane@wiu.edu or Colin Harbke at CR-Harbke@wiu.edu for more information.)
- 170 students participated in the initial background Phase 1 of the study, 81 participated in the follow-up Phase 2 of the study, and 69 participated in the replication Phase 3 of the study.
- In Phase 1 of the study, 64% of students indicated that they drink socially (with others), while 14% drink both socially on their own, and 1% drank heavily although none indicated they had a drinking problem. In addition, 11% said they rarely drank alcohol and 10% had never tried alcohol.
- Of the 89% who drank at least rarely in Phase 1, 72% had consumed 1 or more alcoholic drinks during the preceding full week. Yet, only 10% felt that they were very age-typical in terms of drinking behavior while 32% felt their drinking behavior was very atypical of persons their age.
- Those in Phase 1 who did drink were asked to rate 20 reasons for drinking on a 5-point scale from 1=Almost Never or Never to 5=Almost Always or Always. The top reasons for drinking were because it's fun (3.93), because it improved parties and celebrations (3.59), and to celebrate a special occasion with friends (3.59). The least common reasons for drinking were so that others won't kid you about not drinking (1.39), because your friends pressure you to drink (1.50), and to fit in with a group you like (1.78).
- When those in Phase 1 were asked about their future drinking intentions, 20% said they intended to drink a lot in the next 2 weeks while 36% admitted they intended to get drunk in the next 2 weeks. Drinking intentions had declined to some extent in Phase 2 with 15% saying they intended to drink a lot in the next 2 weeks and 27% admitting they intended to get drunk in the next 2 weeks. By Phase 3, drinking intentions had continued to decline, with 10% saying they intended to drink a long in the next 2 weeks and 23% admitting that they intended to get drunk in the next 2 weeks.
2010 Civil Service Employee of the Year Voting
For the first time, all 897 Civil Service employees were given the opportunity to select the Civil Service Employee of the Year from the 12 monthly winners. 330 Civil Service employees took advantage of this confidential online opportunity. (Contact Carla Farniok, Chair of the Civil Service Council Recognition Committee, at CM-Farniok@wiu.edu for more information.)
- Based on Civil Service employee voting, Don Myers, a supervisor in the University Union Bookstore was announced as the 2010 Civil Service Employee of the Year at the end of year Civil Service luncheon on December 7, 2010.
- Don was also the December Employee of the Month an a link this announcement is available here.
Dean of College of Business & Technology Evaluation
169 College of Business & Technology faculty and staff were invited to provide input on Dean Erekson's performance as Dean of the College of Business & Technology. (Contact Martin Maskarinec, Chair of the Review Committee, at MJ-Maskarinec@wiu.edu for more information.)
- Results of the evaluation will be provided to Dean Erekson and to Provost Thomas to use in providing a formal evaluation of Dean Erekson's performance and in determining contract extension.
Dean of Libraries 4-year Evaluation
14,563 WIU students, faculty, and staff, along with selected external constituents and the general public were invited to provide input on Dean Self's performance as Dean of the University Libraries. 642 individuals provided comment. (Contact Jeff Hancks, Chair of the Review Committee, at JL-Hancks@wiu.edu for more information.)
- Results of the evaluation will be provided to Dean Self and to Provost Thomas to use in providing a formal evaluation of Dean Self's performance and in determining contract extension.
Library Department Course Evaluations - Fall 2010
24 students participating in online Library courses were asked to evaluate their professor and the class. (Contact Phyllis Self, Dean of the University Libraries, at P-Self@wiu.edu for more information.)
- The evaluation was done during Finals Week which likely contributed to just 3 students responding.
Health Science Department Course Evaluations - Fall 2010
The Health Science department continued to use online survey technology to provide students an opportunity to evaluate their online courses. Of 144 students invited, 82 or 57% participated in evaluating 5 different courses. A brief synopsis is provided below. (Contact Mark Kelley, Chair of Health Sciences, at RM-Kelley@wiu.edu for more information.)
- Using a 5-point scale from 1=Poor to 5=Excellent, the mean score for all 11 parameters evaluated was well about a 4=Above Average mean. The highest score was a 4.71 for instructor’s knowledge of the subject matter. In comparing to all college instructors, students rated their health science professor a 4.38, which was one of only four mean scores below 4.50.
EIS/CSP Department Course Evaluations - Fall 2010
346 students enrolled in 15 EIS and CSP courses were asked to try online course evaluations rather than the traditional paper format, with 306 or 88% responding. Individual aggregate reports, including student comments, were provided to each faculty member and the department chair following the posting of final grades. A brief synopsis is provided below. (Contact Reinhard Linder, Chair of EIS, at RW-Lindner@wiu.edu for more information.)
- Of 64 students evaluating their CSP courses, 63% rated their instructor at the highest exceptional rating.
- Of 195 students evaluating their EIS courses on a scale of 1=Strongly Disagree to 5=Strongly Agree, the mean score of all 17 ratings was well above 4=Agree. In terms of overall evaluation, the rating for overall, I believe this instructor was effective was a 4.24.
- Of 37 students evaluating their online EIS courses on a scale of 1=Strongly Disagree to 5=Strongly Agree, the mean score for all but 1 of 12 ratings was well above 4=Agree. In terms of overall evaluation, the rating for overall, I feel the instructor conducted an effective online course was a 4.19.
SGA Off-Campus Dining with Rocky Dollars
Western’s Student Government Associate sponsored a survey among the 10,378 Macomb students asking them about their interest in use the flex plan meal points, i.e., Rocky Dollars, a local restaurants. 322 students provided input. (Contact Brad Ryba at BR-Ryba@wiu.edu for more information.)
- Of the 59% of respondents living in the residence halls, 53% have a meal plan and Rocky Dollars. Of the 41% living off-campus, 55% of these have activated their WIU ID card with Rocky Dollars to purchase food or vending items on campus.
- In choosing 1 or more of 11 options presented, Buffalo Wild Wings was the most preferred local restaurant to be included in the a Rocky Dollars purchase option, being requested by 83% of survey participants. Jimmy Johns was second at 77%, followed by Taco Bell @ 75%, Domino’s Pizza @ 71%, McDonald’s West @ 69%, Wendy’s @ 67%, McDonald’s East @ 57%, Pizza Hut @ 53%, Italian Express @ 52%, KFC/Long John Silvers @ 43%, and Hardees @ 34%. In addition, more than 30 additional options were suggested by write in vote, with Chicks being named most frequently.
- 59% of respondents said they would be very interested in the option of using Rocky Dollars to purchase food a local restaurants, with another 35% being somewhat interested, and only 6% being not at all interested. And 67% said they would definitely spend more Rocky Dollars than they do now if the off-campus option became a reality, with an additional 29% saying they might spend more Rocky Dollars and only 4% saying they would not increase their Rocky Dollars expenditures.
Take Back the Night Evaluation
Following the annual Take Back the Night march and rally (held October 14, 2010) to bring awareness about sexual, domestic, and dating violence, the Western's Women's Center asked the campus community to evaluate the event. Of the 12,183 students, faculty, and staff on the Macomb campus, 465 responded. (Contact the Women's Center at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.)
- While 74% of respondents said they had or knew someone who had a personal experience with sexual, domestic, or dating violence, only 24% had attended Take Back the Night events at Western before and only 23% participated in this year's Take Back the Night event. Among those not participating, other commitments was the largest factor at 54%.
- Of those who did attend the 2010 Take Back the Night Event, 43% said their primary motivation for attending was an interest in the cause, while 30% said their primary motivation was either being or knowing a survivor/victim, 21% said their primary motivation for attending was class credit or a Greek educational, and 7% had other primary motivations.
- In terms of rating the success of the 2010 event, 70% found the speakers to be motivational/inspirational, and being able to select multiple responses, 65% said they found the speakers to be interesting, 55% found them educational, and 48% found them empowering. Similarly, 52% found the music emotional/moving, 48% said they found it motivational/inspirational, and 45% found it diverse.
- Ending with the traditional march, 86% of participants rated the route "just right" or a "good balance of campus and community."
- 90% of participants said that Take Back the Night has increased their awareness of sexual and domestic violence and 94% rated the even as an empowering experience.
Students & Sustainability Survey
Western's Student Tenant Union sponsored an online survey asking the 10,382 Macomb students for their input regarding recycling and sustainability, with a specific focus on the interest of petitioning the city to add recycling options at off-campus apartment complexes, similar to those available to those living is houses and duplexes. The survey also asked for student input on a possible campus "green fee" that would support increased campus recycling efforts. 597 students provided input. (Contact Christopher Zimmerman at CS-Zimmerman@wiu.edu for more information.)
- 97% of responding students felt it would be a good idea to make WIU's campus more sustainable and 68% supported paying a small "green fee" to assist in this effort. In terms of size of the fee, the threshold was about $15/semester with only 32% supporting any higher fee.
- 55% of participants lived off campus, and 47% of these lived in apartments where Macomb City recycling was not offered.
- 98% of all students said they would use recycling, if provided, if they did live off campus. In terms of costs, 83% of students said they felt up to $10/month to have recycling services provided would be an fair fee to assess.
- 77% of students felt the City of Macomb should be charge of overseeing a recycling service added to, e.g., off-campus apartment complexes, where the City's current agreement does not extend.
Workplace Experiences Survey
As his Master's research project, Cavan Gray asked 1,557 employed individuals to participate in an online survey to examine their experiences in the workplace, with 1,192 (77%) agreeing to participate. (Contact Cavan Gray at CJ-Gray@wiu.edu, or his thesis advisor, Dr. Karen Sears, at K-Sears@wiu.edu, for more information.)
- Survey respondents were distributed across a wide range of organization sizes, with 37% working for large organizations with more than 1000 employees, 29% working for small organizations with 50 or fewer employees, and 34% working for in between or medium-sized organizations.
- Participants were asked to rate 40 statements describing their feelings on a 5-point scale where 1=Disagree Very Much, 2=Disagree, 3=Unsure, 4=Agree, and 5=Agree Very Much.
- The 3 statements they disagreed the most with were: I get upset when people don't notice how I look when I go out in public (1.66), I would do almost anything on a dare (1.70), and I like to start new fads and fashions (1.86).
- The 3 statements whey agreed the most with were: I will be a success (4.15), I like to take responsibility for making decisions (3.98), and I see myself as a good leader (3.95).
- Using the same 5-point scale, but with only 9 options regarding how they depict their relationship with their employers, the most disagreed with statement was I feel a great deal of anger toward my organization (1.82) and the most agreed with statement was I feel that my employer has come through in fulfilling the promises made to me when I was hired (3.39).
- Participants were asked to rate the frequency with which they had engaged in 20 different activities while at work using a 5-point scale where 1=Never, 2=Once or Twice, 3=Sometimes, 4=Often, and 5=Many Times.
- The 2 activities least often engaged in at work were: Took stationery from another's desk without later returning it (1.21) and Failed to inform another of a meeting they should have been informed about (1.23).
- The 2 activities most often engaged in at work were: Rolled your eyes at another (2.10) and Raised your voice while speaking to another (2.01)
- Using a similar, but only 4-point scale where 1=Hardly Ever, 2=Rarely, 3=Sometimes, and 4=Frequently, participants were asked to rate the frequency with which they had been treated by someone at work in 7 categories. The least common was Made demeaning, rude, or derogatory remarks about you (1.70) and the most common was Paid little attention to a statement you made or showed little interest in your opinion (2.22).
Food Co-op Interest Survey
Students in Professor Barbara Ribbens' Management 590 course (Strategic Management) surveyed 591 individuals shopping in Macomb about their interest in having a Food Co-op. (Contact Barbara Ribbens at BA-Ribbens@wiu.edu for more information.)
- 48% of survey respondents were WIU students, 34% were Macomb residents, and 18% lived outside of Macomb.
- Among all respondents, the top reason deciding where to purchase groceries was the quality of foods, followed by low prices, and then by low prices. Other issues such as store atmosphere (4th), availability of organic or pesticide-free foods (5th), available parking (6th), and close to public transportation (7th) were far less important. These top three factors held true for all groups surveyed, as did the strong less concern about the remaining four factors.
- Likewise among all respondents, the top consideration when making food purchases was freshness and flavor, with a fairly wide gap to food safety (2nd), supporting the local/regional economy (3rd), and knowing where the food is raised/grown (4th). Again there was little difference between the groups surveyed.
- 88% of respondents said that they would shop at a food co-op that emphasize locally produced food, especially fresh fruits and fresh vegetables. However, interest waned to just 28% plus 36% undecided when it was noted that a food co-op would like require a membership fee of $100 or more.
- Respondents were divided among where the food co-op should be located, with 39% preferring West Jackson St., 33% preferring the Macomb Square, and 29% preferring East Jackson St.
Library "Short Course" Evaluation - Fall 2010
Each semester Library faculty teach numerous "short courses" on using the library, usually with a regular class meeting of a traditional class gathering in a library classroom for the presentation. These one-time class meetings are evaluated to help ensure that Library faculty are meeting the needs of the course's faculty and students. (Contact Phyllis Self, Library Dean, at P-Self@wiu.edu for more information.)
- Of the 15 Library faculty, 12 conducted at least one of these "short courses" during Fall 2010 and 1,361 students provided feedback on their teaching and the value of the "short course" in helping them learn about library resources and how to access them.
- Students rated the Library faculty on a 5-point scale where 1=Strongly Disagree, 2=Disagree, 3=Neutral, 4=Agree, and 5=Strongly Agree. Of the 8 questions assessed, all rated above a 4.
- Lowest: 4.30 - The librarian encouraged student questions and participation
- Highest: 4.61 - The librarian was knowledgeable about the material
Social Work Students - Actualization Survey
In a new initiative to help in the advising and education of their students, Western's Social Work department asked its majors to complete an Actualization and Diagnostic Construct survey that measures our picture of "knowing" and represents how we position ourselves to others and to ourselves. Of the 183 majors, 50 participated. (Contact John Tracy, Social Work Chair, at JR-Tracy@wiu.edu for more information.)
- A few selected aspects of the Actualization and Diagnostic Construct where students could choose one of five responses, the Social Work Majors indicated that:
- When in comes to making a moral decision, 63% decide according to what they should do while 38% said they are not sure because answers are not always black and white so they see to learn more before making a decision.
- When it comes to society being best off, 66% said this would happen if it followed soled values and true leaders while 24% said they weren't sure and needed to know more first.
- When it comes to family, 61% said their family needs a strong leader with solid values and role identify while 32% said there is a lot they need to learn and understand before they can say what their family needs.
- Given choices of almost never, seldom, somewhat, often, and almost always:
- 68% said they almost always know what is right and wrong, 53% said they are often democratic in their relationship with others, 51% said they almost never feel paralyzed and unable to make decisions, 34% said they are somewhat intuitive (psychic), and 61% said they almost always keep their word no matter what.
Social Work Students - Relationship Inventory Survey
In a new initiative to help in the advising and education of their students, Western's Social Work department asked its majors to complete a Relationship Inventory which indicates individual and grow worldview competence. Of the 183 majors, 46 participated. (Contact John Tracy, Social Work Chair, at JR-Tracy@wiu.edu for more information.)
- While students could select more than one area of interest, Social Work practice was by far the most preferred, with 95% of participating students indicating an interest, compare to 37% for administration and 22% for research. And, while student could again select multiple options, 84% said the micro level of Social Work was of interest, compared to 47% at the mezzo level, 42% at the macro level, and 19% at the global level.
- 93% of students rated their reading skills as fine; while somewhat less, 67%, rated their academic writing skills as find and 26% indicated they would like help to improve. Similarly, 66% rated their study skills as fine while 32% would like help to improve.
- A few selected aspects of the Tracy Relational Inventory survey where students could choose one of ten responses, the Social Work Majors indicated that:
- In terms of competition, 37% like a good challenge and 33% felt the rules should be the same for all.
- In terms of the world, 44% felt it needs our help to make it better and 23% see it as truly interconnected even though most people don't see it that way.
- In terms of ownership, 53% believe that with help and work any one can be successful.
- In terms of being a responsible family member, 76% said they care about others as well as themselves.
- In terms of a moral person, 42% said a moral person should be self-responsible and self-determining, while 35% said a moral person should keep his or her promises.
- 93% of responding Social Work majors said they more often look for strengths in people and do not look for perfection, while 7% said they more often look for faults in people and judge them accordingly. Similarly, 72% said they trust most people while 28% sad the feel they cannot trust most people.
International Student Recruitment Suggestion Survey
Western's 359 international students were invited to participate in a survey to find out what brought them to Western and what we might do to increase our enrollment of international students. 120 of these students, from 23 different countries, responded and provided input. (Contact Kevin Timlin in the Center for International Studies at KJ-Timlin@wiu.edu for more information.)
- 72% of the students were from urban areas with populations in excess of 500,000 people, yet 29% cited Western's safety, 38% cited Western's campus environment, and 17% cited Western's geographical location as reasons for coming to Western, clearly indicating a desire to attend school in a much less populous environment. In fact, of the 15 issues listed, the only ones that were more important in selecting Western were cost of tuition (50%), academic program (47%), and graduate assistantship (39%).
- 32% of our international respondents indicated that they had been enrolled at a college, university, or ESL program elsewhere in the United States before attending Western, whereas for 68%, Western was their first US higher education stop. Of those who had attended college elsewhere, 31% indicated they chose to transfer to Western to complete their degree program.
- 63% of international students indicated that they were currently enrolled in a graduate program, 23% were enrolled in an undergraduate program, 11% were enrolled in the WESL Institute, and 3% were short-term exchange students. Of the graduate students, 88% had completed their undergraduate degrees outside of the US. Of the WESL students, 92% plan to enroll at Western as undergraduate or graduate students after they complete the WESL program.
- Only 21% of our international students indicated their Western education was being funded by their own country or US program, with the overwhelming 79% paying for their own education either from personal or family funds or with graduate assistantships or athletic scholarships.
- Friends who had attended WIU were the top source of initial information about Western for 37% of our international students, although 55% said they had applied to other US colleges as well as Western. 79 of the 120 responding students provided comments that were shared with the Center for International Studies about how Western can more effectively recruit students from their own countries.
NASPA IV-E Regional Advisory Board Interest Survey
Karolynn Heuer, Director of the Student Assistance and Parent Services Center, took advantage of the online survey technology available at Western Illinois University, in her service role as KC Coordinator for the IV-E region of NASPA, the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators. (Contact Karolynn at KA-Heuer@wiu.edu for more information.)
- Of the 42 individuals current serving in leadership roles, 37 took advantage of the online survey to indicate their interested in continuing and/or changing their NASPA IV-E involvement.
EIS Online Course Evaluations Pilot
Western’s Department of Educational & Interdisciplinary Studies piloted the use of online course evaluations for one of their Fall 2010 8-week courses to see if it was an effective means of conducting course evaluations. (Contact Office Support Specialist Lisa Turke at LA-Turke@wiu.edu for more information.)
- 23 students in the online EIS 535 course were asked to evaluate their professor. 10 took advantage of the online format, with 7 of these also providing textual comment in addition to the traditional numerical evaluation.
- The department chair was provided with the summary results and statistics, as well as the text comments the day following the grade submission deadline so that the faculty member could have near immediate access to the results.
- Based on the success of the pilot, the EIS department is considering a full-scale move to online course evaluations, at least for all of their online courses, and potentially all of their Fall 2010 courses
Beu's "Stall Talk" Evaluation
The 5,472 WIU who were also enrolled last year were asked to provide input on the value of “Stall Talk,” the Beu Health Center health education initiative that posts a flier on health related issues in bathroom stalls on campus. Budget reductions had caused a reduction in the ability to provide this service and the survey sought to determine if it should be resumed. 165 students responded to the survey invitation. (Contact JoAnn Hairston-Jones, the Beu Health Education Coordinator, at J-Hairston-Jones@wiu.edu for more information.)
- Of the survey respondents, 69% lived in the residence hall last year, the primary focus of “Stall Talk.”
- 58% of students report reading “Stall Talk” once a week, 23% read it at least once a month, and only 19% had never read it.
- 98% found “Stall Talk” to be both a helpful and a reliable source of information, with 77% indicating that at least one issue had been a particularly effective educational resource.
- 60% considered “Stall Talk” to be one of their primary sources of health education on campus, and while 62% would consider reading it if available on the WIU website, the comments made it clear that the overwhelming consensus was a preference to see it return to campus bathroom stalls.
Social Work Students - Preparedness to Work with Older Clients
As part of the WIU Curriculum Development Institute with funding from the CSWE Gero-Ed Center and the John A. Hartford Foundation, Individuals and/or organizations who had supervised WIU Social Work practicum students were asked to evaluate the students' experience in working with elderly clients. Of the 83 contacts made, 54 provided input. (Contact Debra Allwardt or Katherine Perone in the Department of Social Work at D-Allwardt@wiu.edu or KE-Perone@wiu.edu for more information.)
- Of the respondents, only 30% dealt directly with the aging population, although 66% did serve the older adult population.
- On the first day of the student's practicum supervisors tended to expect less that even beginning skill levels on, but did expect considerable skill growth to at least approaching a moderate level by the end of the practicum experience across all 4 areas evaluated.
- Values, Ethics, and Theoretical Perspectives: Of the 10 categories assessed, only respect and promote older adult clients' right to dignity and self-determination" and "respect diversity among older adult clients, families, and professional" were expected to exceed a beginning skill level on the first day of the practicum, and these two also were also expected to grow to above a moderate level by the end of the practicum, as was "address the cultural, spiritual, and ethnic values and beliefs of older adults and families."
- Assessment: Of the 10 categories assessed, none were expected to even reach the beginning skill level on the first day of the practicum, but "use empathy and sensitive interviewing skills to engage older clients in identifying their strengths and problems" was expected to grow above a moderate level by the end of the practicum.
- Aging Services, Programs, and Policies: Of the 10 categories assessed, none were expected to even reach the beginning skill level on the first day of the practicum, and while growth was expected in all, none were expected to achieve a moderate level by the end of the practicum.
- Leadership in the Practice Environment of Aging: Of the 10 categories assessed, none were expected to even reach the beginning skill level on the first day of the practicum, and only "assess 'self-relation' in order to motivate self and others including trainees, students, and staff toward mutual, meaningful achievement of a focused goal or committed standard of practice" was only one expected to grow to above a moderate level by the end of the practicum
Moms' Weekend Survey
Of the 390 Moms who attended the Fall 2010 Moms' Weekend, 179 provided input regarding their satisfaction with the event. (Contact Karolynn Heuer in the Student Assistance and Parent Service Center at KA-Heuer@wiu.edu for more information.)
- <3% of Mom's attending were WIU alumni so it was a great opportunity to visit the campus, with 56% of Mom's traveling more than 200 miles for the event, and even 26% truly enjoying the student experience by bunking with their student.
- Moms' Weekend is traditionally held in conjunction with the Macomb Balloon Rally, but 94% of Mom's their student was the draw to campus, not the rally.
- 44% of Moms attending the opening dinner reception where the Asiagio Pretzel Encrusted Chicken being the favorite menu option, and the dinner ending comedians were rated "fantastic" by 61% of Moms and 83% of Moms said the definitely though the addition of the comedians added to the opening event.
- Cooking with Mom continued it's sold out status, with 3 times as many saying they wanted to attend but the class was full compared to the number of slots available. Other popular events were Moms Free Bowling, the Amazing Race, the Horn Field Campus Climbing Tower & Nature Hike, and the Golf Scramble. Only the low vendor participation detracted from the Shops at the University Union.
- 36% of Moms stayed for the Farewell Breakfast, with 88% suggesting the same menu for next year, especially the very popular omelet stations where many Moms indicated even more stations were needed to meet the high demand. Those that chose not to wait in line did however, express some dissatisfaction with the quality of the scrambled eggs and orange juice.
Study Abroad Opportunities
All 12,585 WIU students were afforded the opportunity to participate in an online survey that shared the many Study Aboard opportunities and also sought information regarding this awareness of an interest in studying abroad. 782 students provided input. (Contact Emily Gorlewski in the Center for International Studies at EJ-Gorlewski@wiu.edu for more information.)
- 60% of responding students had traveled outside of the US, indicating an experience with other cultures. That showed in they high perceived benefits of studying abroad, where one a scale of 1=Not At All Beneficial to 5=Very Beneficial, students rated the benefit to their personal growth a 4.79, the benefit to their education at 4.42, and the benefit to their future career a 4.40.
- While 86% said they were interested in Study Aboard opportunities, only 41% were aware of the types of Study Abroad programs offered at WIU and just 16% indicated that their academic advisor had discussed studying abroad with them.
- Students were fairly equally divided between preferring 1-3 week (37%) and full semester (34%) Study Abroad opportunities, while 20% preferred a summer experience and 9% would like to Study Aboard for a full year. While there was a strong preference of studying abroad in groups (33%) compared to on their own (8%), the majority (57%) said either way would be a great opportunity.
- In terms of obstacles to studying abroad, by far the most common was costs/finances (87%), while students also felt academic consideration (39%), family/friends (36%), jobs (32%), and fear of the unknown (27%) were also significant potential obstacles.
Dietetics Internship Evaluation
The 11 students who had graduated from Western and were completing their dietetic internships, required to become Registered Dietitians, during 2010 and their internship supervisors were asked to evaluate the preparation the WIU undergraduate program provided. 5 of the interns and all 11 of the supervisors provided input. (Contact Lorri Kanauss in the Department of Dietetics, Fashion Merchandising, & Hospitality at L-Kanauss@wiu.edu for more information.)
- All of the students said they would recommend WIU's dietetics program to others and all of the supervisors said they would select a another student from Western's dietetics program to participate in their internship program.
- This strong support is not surprising given the high marks both students gave the preparation they received in their WIU coursework and supervisors indicated their WIU interns brought into their internship.
- On a scale of 1=very unsatisfied to 5=very satisfied, students gave top scores to professionalism (4.40), oral communication (4.40), conceptual skills (4.20), problem solving & thinking skills (4.20), and nutritional knowledge (4.20). The lowest scores were for written communication (3.60), management skills (3.60), and food knowledge (3.60), with all other skill categories falling between these highs and lows.
- On the same scale of 1=very unsatisfied to 5=very satisfied, internship supervisors gave top scores to food knowledge (4.36), written communication (4.27), oral communication (4.27), conceptual skills (4.27), management skills (4.27), and community focus (4.27). The only score below 4.00 was for clinical skills (3.91).
Study Abroad Program Evaluation - Summer 2010 Abroad
Of the 17 students who participated in study abroad during Summer 2010, 12 provided input regarding their experience in Costa Rica, Italy, Mexico, the Netherlands, and the United Kingdom. (Contact Emily Gorlewski in the Center for International Studies at EJ-Gorlewski@wiu.edu for more information.)
- Friends were the strongest advocate for studying abroad, with 45% of students noted that friends had recommended they study abroad.
- Studying abroad definitely does not require students to use a foreign language. In fact, only 12% of students reported needing a to use a foreign language, and those who did were well prepared before leaving and made good progress in their language skills during their study abroad experience.
- Personal expenses varied widely depending on the students interests in travel while studying abroad, ranging from less that $500 to more than $4,000, but the average was about $1,000.
- All students said that their study abroad experience influenced their ability to cope with an adapt to new and different situations and increased their desire to travel abroad, with 88% saying it altered their world view and 75% said it influenced their future plans. With such positive insight, it is not surprising that all students would recommend their study abroad program to other students.
Centennial Honors College Senior Survey
The 66 Honors College seniors who graduated in Spring 2010 were invited to participate in an online survey to provide feedback on their Honors College experience. The input from the 12 who responded will help the Honors College in their future planning of courses and activities for honors students. (Contact Bill Knox in the Centennial Honors College at WL-Knox@wiu.edu for more information.)
- 83% of the graduating seniors plan on attending graduate or professional school after graduation, and all of these have already been accepted to graduate/professional school although only 22% had been offered scholarships/fellowships to help offset the cost of their continuing education. With some overlap as a few Honors College students indicated they planned on attending graduate school as well as working, 33% said employment was their plan after college, although none of these had yet received an employment offer.
- The Honors College seniors were asked to rate their honors experience on a scale of 1=Strongly Disagree to 5=Strongly Agree.
- The areas with the highest level of agreement were: 1) I am glad I participated in the honors program (4.50) and 2) the honors program provided me with opportunities for close interaction with faculty (4.17).
- The areas with the lowest level of agreement were: 1) the honors program provided opportunities for me to strengthen my civic engagement (3.33) and 2) the honors program helped prepare me for my future career goals (3.42).
- The Honors College seniors were asked to rate the importance of various aspects of the Centennial Honors College to their personal honors experience on a scale of 1=Very Unimportant to 5=Very Important.
- Two areas tied for the highest level of importance (4.33): 1) early registration for courses and 2) honors scholarships
- The area with the lowest level of importance (3.17) was honors social and recreational activities.
- The Honors College seniors were asked to rate their level of satisfaction with various aspects of their honors experience on a scale of 1=Very Dissatisfied to 5=Very Satisfied.
- Honors advising was the highest rated area (4.92). Honors activities was the lowest rated area (4.08).