Week 09 – Lab + Reading Reflection


“And like I said, there were times where, you know, I was really close to the people that were protesting and doing all these things, and, you know, really getting in the face of administration, and I wanted to be that person so bad. I think I’ve always wanted to be that person. But I think I had to recognize within my journey that as I said, to the analogy, you need people in different positions for it to really work. And that was just my role. So sometimes it sucked, because I couldn’t be on the front lines. But I understood that my position was just as important in the journey to try to get what we want on campus.”

“You know, and it’s weird kind of seeing the different dynamics where a lot of people hear what I did my freshman sophomore year, and it’s like, Wow, that’s amazing. But if you’re a person of color, you’re Black, like you understand like, yes, that’s when it starts. No, that’s what it starts with freshmen and sophomore year, so then you can compete with the people that don’t have to think about it until junior and senior year because their experiences are a lot different than ours. So for me when it meant to get mentored, and what it means to mentor people is that understanding how our identity kind of goes into the professional process, organizational process, and just understanding it starts really early.”

“But if you think about it, like there are protests every year, right, people are mad at something every year. So you got to think about what separates this protest from all the other protests? … So imagine if they were responsive to every protest every year, like, how much money it would cost them? … Like this movement started before started before I even got on campus… So it’s like, you have to really realize how long the movement was right? And how this was not going away anytime soon… So I think, above else, above all else, that’s the reason why I’m in work is because we have people year after year, putting people on to the next step, putting people on to the next.”

a. Provide an example(s) of possible critiques;

There were critiques of living and learning being “divorced from each other … and that the mission of the  University was not being logically extended to the residence hall environment.” From there, I can glean that education at UIUC was not seen as intimate or particularly enlightening. Students did not feel connected to each other as part of a community nor did they find their coursework specifically meaningful. They did not feel as though their education connected to each other nor real life itself.

b. Identify at least 1 challenge the program faced from its inception and discuss why this was so;

A large challenge program was that it was born out of ambiguity and lacked structure. For that reason, its educational philosophy’s goals “were never made clear enough to serve as evaluative guidelines.” From there, it was hard to describe if it was effective or not, and this also came to a head between 1974 and 1980 as there was a lot of conflict due to its unique situation in the gap between the normal institutional process and the development of educational philosophy.

c. Consider: How does the evolution of Unit One/Allen Hall make visible the vulnerabilities of innovation? Where else have we seen vulnerability in innovation this semester?

Unit One/Allen Hall makes clear that innovation is not clear nor easy. There is inevitable pushback and an evolution in offerings, while the primary mission to connect and educate students in an interdisciplinary community remains. For years, the program was under scrutiny for its efficacy and value, and it was later deemed to be successful after increased funding and reform. At the same time, these processes can be slow. We have vulnerability in innovation this semester through the creation of the cultural houses on Nevada Street. They came after a lot of student activism regarding a lack of cultural safe spaces, but even in more recent years, there was a push for a new BNAACC house. There were definitely times, too, that there was uncertainty in funding and viability of supporting and increasing the number of Black students and professors.

Part 2

What is articulated in this proposal is that past efforts have been lacking and falling short. There are pressures to perform and achieve at a high level, but students are feeling disconnected from their work and education. There is a grand push for interdisciplinary collaboration as well as acknowledgement that that may include the shifting of funding. The pressures an undergraduate education may be beginning to feel is that it is not as “useful” or worth the money and time as it used to be. Thus, there is a consolidated effort into improving the undergraduate educational experience.

Week 09 – Lab Reflection + Reading Response

Lab Reflection

Transcribe Interview:

How has the constant growth of technology change the way students connect with each other and the world?

“I’ve seen many students in public with their friends, and they are all usually on their phones, rather than speaking to each other. Whereas before the advances of technology, people would normally speak to each other without the use of their phones or social media. Technology has changed students for the better and for the worse” (2:01)

What communication method through technology is the most effective?

“Some time of video chatting, for example zoom, because if students are collaboratively working on a project, they can see what the other students are doing at a certain time, whereas through text or phone call, you can’t see the other person. So through video call, you can understand how the other person is feeling. You can see their emotions, hand signals, etc, and can better understand what another student is trying to communicate.”(2:45-3:30)

Did you ever experience a social change after using a certain technology or social media platform to communicate?

“Using certain social media platforms, I’ve tended to realize that students became more impacted about what other people say about them. People tend to either have negative comments about others when sitting behind a screen because they know nothing will happen to them, whereas in person, people don’t want to negatively comment on someone else’s appearance, and will keep to themselves” (4:15-4:45).

How does technology affect the perception of our needs?

“Technology alters our perception of what we truly need. For instance, on Instagram, you could see a very famous person living a certain lifestyle, and you may feel like you need that, or seeing good looking people and feel that you need to be that certain way” (10:15-10:30).

Reading Response

Part 1:

An example of a possible critique was the student fee that was implemented for funding. “Beginning in 1975, students began paying a modest fee of $15/semester. This fee gradually increased to $45/semester in 1980.” The administration represented this issue to the students who protested the program’s being terminated for fiscal reasons.

A challenge that the program faced from its inception was centered around social and political issues such as race relations, international politics, ideologies of the left and the right, and feminism. The issues raised by these discourses frequently caused students a great deal of discomfort, a logical outcome when freshmen/sophomores’ values are challenged. 

The evolution of Unit One/Allen Hall make visible the academic vulnerabilities of innovation. An example of this was when the feature characteristics of courses such as Community Internships, Women’s Studies, Interpersonal and Black/White Relations were reorganized. They were small class size, seminar format, flexible structure, innovative approaches to subject matter and presentation and student participation in design and content.

Part 2:

Peltason notes the importance of reform at the University of Illinois. His goal is to be a leading institution in Illinois in providing instruction for freshmen and sophomores of the highest quality level. He also articulates that “there is a need for coordinated curriculum development, experimentation, evaluation, and research in undergraduate education. Furthermore, Peltason is emphasizing how departments may restructure their curriculum, causing a domino affect to other departments without them even knowing it. This may bring pressures on the allocation of a student’s time during a semester, and all innovation and experiementation with courses should be evaluated systematically.

Week 09 – Lab Reflection + Reading Response

1b. Transcribe Interview

a. Have you ever used any online learning environments/platforms? If so then which ones and in what capacity? (eg. Student, Educator, Administrator, etc.)

“I am a student rn, so have used quite a few.. Moodle, compass, prairieLearn, and all. The same as you.”

b. How do you think your educational experience would change if you were to shift your studies to completely offline without access to such platforms?

It would not be the same to be honest, especially during COVID. I cannot imagine us being able to study without these platforms. Having these platforms makes it possible to communicate with the instructors and other students remotely. I don’t think discussions, and other kinds of activities could take place without them.

c. What are some offline study experiences that you think cannot be replicated in online study platforms?

I can’t seem to think of any to be honest, the proctoring maybe. The proctoring and doubt clearing on online platforms are no where as good as real life.

d. Are you currently a student, if not what year were you one, and what kind of technology did you use at that time to aid in studies at the University?

yeah I am currently a student.

e. Do you think your attention is better grasped if the class uses interaction technology such as the i-Clicker, etc , why? or do you prefer some other kind of classroom experience.

I think it is. I am much more focused in the class if there are i clicker activities. I need to get the scores you see. Because of that motivation I seem to be more concentrated in the content being taught.

f. Have you ever faced difficulties studying because the course had technology components, if so what were the issues you faced?

Well there are always technical difficulties. Net issues and stuff. But if you mean problems in studying because of technology. I don’t think there was. I would say though, that technology kind of makes the whole study process a little impersonal.

g. What kinds of changes do you imagine in educational technology in the near future?

I totally feel, augmented reality and virtual reality are going to be big in the future of education, for labs and stuff I think. I also feel AI will replace the easy math classes, or the simpler classes I feel.

Reading Response

Part 1

a. There were major criticisms over recent evaluation studies and actively overseeing the academic program’s maintenance and development. 

b. One of the greatest challenges are the long-term instructional participation by faculty and the acknowledgement by student-residents that taking academic chances and exploring new territory are educationally rewarding experiences.

c. There were vulnerabilities in terms of funding and also leadership where the idea of the leaders did not match in sync which caused issues to which direction the hall was headed. We also saw vulnerabilities in DRES where funding was an issue.

Part 2

American universities, certainly including the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign , are being challenged to maintain and improve the quality of undergraduate education. The challenge has a long history, but our response remains inadequate. This challenge has been trying to be met and now because because the author feels that the UIUC is not the best institution in providing instruction for underclassmen with a high faulty education system. He feels the system has lacked historically and wants to improve the educational experience for the underclassmen.

The issues underclassmen face are for which the solutions could be –

Create a structure within the university complex capable of attracting and organizing the expertise that already exists among the faculty for dealing with undergraduate instructional needs.

Define the needs as they exist on this campus to focus the activities and channel the energies of those who become engaged in coping with our undergraduate instructional problems.

Week 09 – Lab Reflection + Reading Response

Part 1: Lab Reflection

1b.) Transcribe Interview

  1. “Yeah, I was contacted through Facebook and an ROTC booth was at my high school. Um, once I said that I was slightly interested in the program I got many emails from like the ROTC program from like the University of Illinois and their office.”
  2. “Okay, yeah, we train three days a week in the morning for an hour from 6 to 7am.”
  3. “I think it’s just kind of like a learning curve when you’re a freshman and you’re just like, it’s kind of a lot more responsibility than what you’re used to in high school, like within our fighting alumni battalion, our cadets, we kind of take leadership roles like squad leader, team leader, first sergeant, platoon sergeant, and all the way up to like battalion commander. And so as you progress in the program and progress, like in school, you’re getting more responsibility leadership responsibility in ROTC so it’s kind of part of the training where you just have to learn how to manage your time wisely.”

Part 2: Reading Response

a.) Example: An example of a critique was the absence of administration supervision of the students that were apart of the organization.

b.) One of the challenges Unit One faced during its lifetime was its funding. It was eliminated from the Illinois budget three times in 1978, 1979, and 1980. This happened because it was argued that it never reached the excellence it promised when implemented. Funding is important for sustaining a organization’s life.

c.) The evolution of Unit One/Allen Hall makes visible is the financial vulnerabilities that are present with the innovations. My first lab reflection discusses the financial vulnerabilities that are present. Sidewalks, streets, and other pathways need to be fixed or remodeled. The problem with this demand is the lack of funding that will fulfill the demand.

Peltason notes that “now is the time” because the author feels that the University of Illinois is the not the leading institution in providing instruction for underclassmen with a high faulty education system. He wants to help the students that are struggling at the University of Illinois. Academic advising, according to this document, is inadequate for the underclassmen. This puts a pressure on the underclassmen because the requirements needed for their major could be more confusing to the underclassmen. Another problem is the evaluation system that provides the students with the credited hours. Courses providing different methods and hours credits confusion and inefficiency. This creates more pressure for the student because there is a mix of confusion and stress when applying and taking courses at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Week 08 – Lab Reflection + Reading Response

1b. Schedule and Conduct Interview

I have scheduled a call with Andreas Paul Eberhard Kloeckner to discuss the platform RELATE, and interview him on the questions for the 24th. I have sent emails to the rest of my primary leads and am still waiting to hear back from them.

1c. Developing Survey Questions

a. Which online learning environments/platforms have you used at the University, if any? (Select all that apply)


– Moodle

– Compass2g/ Illinois Compass

– PrairieLearn

– Other (Please Specify)

b. In what capacity have you used these online education platforms?

– Student

– Instructor

– Administrator

c. How do you think your educational experience would change if you were to shift your studies to completely offline without access to such platforms?

– Drastically Worse

– Little Worse

– About the same

– Little Better

– Drastically Better

d. Do you think the complete offline study experience is able to be emulated on these online study platforms?

– Yes

– No (What is it that is missing?)

e. If you are currently and Instructor, name the different technological study environments that you used as a student if any.

– Free Response box

f. Do you believe your attentiveness is improved using technological products like the i-clicker in the study environment?

– Not at all

– Not much

– It’s about the same

– It’s a little better

– By a lot

g. How do you think technology in education is affecting the quality of education being provided?

– Drastically deteriorating

– Making it a little worse

– Not affecting it in any way

– Improving it a little

– Education is better than it ever was

h. Do you think the colleges would be able to function the same during this pandemic without the aid of technology? How?

– Yes [Free Response field]

– No [Free Response field]

1d. Expand Survey Distribution Leads

Cecilia Ding – Chair ACM UIUC

Vibhav Kotriwala – Engineering Student UIUC

Reading Response

My secondary source is an excerpt from the research paper “EXAMINING TECHNOLOGICAL FACTORS ON E-LEARNING ACCEPTANCE AND LEARNING TRANSFER” by Seohyun Claire Wong. The main idea and goal of the paper revolves around analyzing and to explore technological factors at the learner, instructional design, and system level and examine their effects on the e-learning acceptance and learning outcomes.(Wong). The author through this study is mainly attempting to clear the ambiguity revolving around our understanding of technological factors that are unique in e-learning such as computer anxiety, perceived ease of use, or controllability. (Wong)

The research design and data collection for the project was quite detailed. This research is a cross-sectional study using a quantitative survey to explain the effect of e-learning technological factors on technology acceptance and learning transfer. The quantitative research design was selected for this study because the purpose of the research was to examine the effects and relationships among variables (Creswell, 1994). A written survey was created to measure 14 factors and gather demographic information. All instruments measuring factors in the survey were previously validated in the existing literature. To collect the data, an electronic survey was sent to the target respondents by e-mails. A confirmation factor analysis technique was employed to cross-validate the factors. An inferential statistical analysis method, structural equation modeling, was performed for the hypotheses testing. (Wong)

Wong analyzes several key perspectives in relation to e-learning in this study, these perspectives give me several ideas for my own research study and are quite informative. The different types of topics that are covered include –

– Intention to Use & Actual Use

– Learner Satisfaction

– Perceived Usefulness

– Reliability and Functionality

– Perceived Ease of Use

These generic topic areas are important for my research study as well, as they help gauge the overall impact of e-learning environments on students, instructors and will help better answer my overall research question.

5 Takeaways –

1) research design – Design the research paper, understand the requirements and how you want to answer those requirements.

2) target population and research sample – Understand the exact target population, and ask questions pertinent to them, also analyze how their answers help answer the research questions

3) measurements – Use metrics, and clear data to prove your points.

4) data collection process – Use multiple different kinds of datasets, such as interviews, surveys, statistics, and research studies to further reinforce your findings.

5) Divide and Conquer – Divide the general question into smaller subsets and categories, and try and answer those categories separately. Together they shall answer the general question as a whole.

Week 08 – Lab + Reading Reflection

1b Scheduled Interview

Ron Lewis (Class of 2017, Finance) — former Student Body President at UIUC, #BeingBlackatIllinois movement. Meeting scheduled for Wednesday, October 21 at 4 pm.

1c Survey Questions

How would you rate your familiarity and participation with social justice-based student activism movements on campus?

Choices: Poor, Below Average, Average, Above Average, Excellent

How do you think UIUC compares to its peer institutions in terms of social justice-based student activism?

Choices: Poor, Below Average, Average, Above Average, Excellent

How receptive is the University (as a system) to student activism in terms of change?

Choices: Poor, Below Average, Average, Above Average, Excellent

What do you think should be changed or implemented?

Answer: long form

Estimate the number of Black students at UIUC.

Choices of 1%, 3%, 5% (correct answer), 7%, 9%, 11%, 13%, 15%

The I-Connect Diversity and Inclusion workshop is required of all incoming freshmen and transfer students. “I-Connect Diversity & Inclusion Workshop is an experiential training designed to help incoming students embrace differences and recognize shared experiences in order to build a welcoming and engaged campus community.” How effective would you rate the workshop in providing last change?

Answers: Very ineffective, Ineffective, Neutral, Effective, Very effective

Currently, all University students are required to take both a Non-Western Cultural Studies gen-ed as well as a US Minorities gen-ed. What are your opinions on this?

Answer: long form

Have you taken a U.S. Minorities gen-ed? How useful or interesting of a class was it for you?

Answer: long form

1d Expanded Survey Distribution Leads

EWeek Newsletter

Rebecca Xun – student activist

Reading Response

What question(s) is the author looking to answer? What sorts of data/evidence (primary sources) do they use to answer those questions (i.e. how do they analyze, criticize, interpret or summarize their data)? What key figures, events, or places within or beyond the campus might they build their story around? How do you plan to use this for your project?

Throughout Catching the Spark, the authors try to answer how systemic transformation of universities can be brought about by innovations set into motion through the work of student activists and data — as illustrated the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. First, they highlight the general atmosphere and state of college campuses across the country in reference to diversity and equity before delving into the specifics of programs at the University of Illinois. The authors build their story around the Pathways to Results (PTR) Initiative, as they themselves are part of that initiative. They do this by highlighting the initial challenges and how the PTR Initiative addressed or imbued each of them into their university proceedings. I plan to use the PTR Initiative to represent a genuine interest by the University to address the concerns of student activists in moving innovations for equity to scale.

Through Housing Is An Epicenter For Change, the authors are looking to answer how University facilities and services in the form of housing can work hand-in-hand with student activism to empower Black students and other students of color. They are quick to point out how Social Justice and Leadership Education is situated in Residential Life with three full-time staff as well as other staffed groups like the Men of Impact and the Queer Housing Coalition (84). #BeingBlackatIllinois began with a single email from a sBlack student leader to university administrators as part of the aftermath of the Trayvon Martin death and subsequent tense relations at UIUC. As well, the article points out specific departments in the Office of Inclusion and Intercultural Relations — Diversity Education and BNAACC — responding to the student activism and call to action meeting. The authors also highlight support from a Latinx student as well as a similar hashtag trending at the University of Michigan (i.e. #BBUM: Being Black at the University of Michigan). This entire article goes into showing how student activism via protests, demonstrations, and clear demands have since translated into large scale strategic work that has been institutionalized across the university.

There were a wide array of points from the Harvard survey design guidelines that could be taken, but I will particularly highlight the ones that were less-covered in my survey questions. One of them was that survey questions should be tested on an audience beforehand in order to demonstrate viability and understanding by the general public. A lot of times, the way that a question would answered in one’s head is not how it is interpreted by others so minimizing that gap is key to surveys where respondents cannot ask follow-up questions of the survey designer. From there, the survey creator should iterate and adjust the questions accordingly. Even though surveys are typically seen as simple, they can still be improved upon for clarity and achieving its purpose. As well, survey questions should provide reference frames so that participants can understand the scope of a question and what they should be evaluating since it’s generally up to interpretation. Additionally, the order of responses can influence answer choices, so for that reason, randomizing answer choices can help — depending. Context is still key as answer choices that are on a scale would make sense to be ordinal, but other question types may work in a randomized format. Finally, questions should be straightforward and non-double-barreled as participants may not agree with both statements.

Week 08 – Lab Reflection + Reading Response

Part 1: Lab – Interview and Survey Design

I reached out to the two members of NOBE and will update this post after their responses. I am also awaiting a response from the Dr. Turner and Mrs. Newell.

Developing Survey Questions:

How has the constant growth of technology impacted the way students connect with each other and the world?

  • Very positive impact
  • Positive impact
  • No impact at all
  • Negative Impact
  • Very negative impact

What communication method through technology is the most efficient for students?

  • Email
  • Text
  • Snapchat
  • Mobile Call
  • Instagram
  • Other: ________

Did you experience a social change after using a certain technology to communicate?

  • Great amount of social change
  • Decent amount of social change
  • Neutral amount of social change
  • Slight amount of social change
  • Little to no amount of social change

What percentage of students are aided by technology?

  • 100%
  • 80%
  • 60%
  • 40%
  • 20%

What social media platforms do you use and why? (Select all that apply)

  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • Snapchat
  • Instagram
  • Tik-Tok
  • Linkedin
  • None of the above

How does technology affect our perception of our needs? How does it affect our way of seeing and experiencing the world? (Select all that you agree with)

  • Makes students believe that they have to rely on technology
  • Opens up opportunities for students that must overcome disabilities
  • It doesn’t affect our perception of our needs
  • Diversifies what a student wants versus what he/she needs
  • Can lead students to think that they take more for granted than they thought before

To what extent does technology redefine reality? Does it serve to solidify knowledge or relationships?

  • Certain technologies can question the purpose of life
  • Certain technologies can make or break friendships or relationships
  • Technology solidifies knowledge
  • Technology does not redefine reality
  • Technology will always continue to shape our knowledge of the world

Before COVID, you used technology on a [ ] basis:

  • Hourly
  • Daily
  • Weekly
  • Monthly
  • Yearly

Survey Distribution Leads

Sebastian Dziubek / Student in Engineering / University of Illinois

Matt Perry / Student in Engineering / University of Illinois

Reading Response

The resource Students utilize technology for social good through Hack4Impact from the Daily Illini helps explore how it helps connect students with nonprofits through technology and the impacts that they make on society. The author believes that “this whole idea of social impact and technology needs to be more intertwined in the future to propel nonprofits to do even more social good,” pushing for technology to be utilized to its full potential. The impact that this organization has on social change through will help me pursue the answer to my inquiry. Additionally, they created an educational tool called MapStories “developed as a way to help the newsroom share local history and African American culture in a user-friendly way.” This is a key event that was used to build their story, which eventually allowed them to partner with other nonprofits that wanted to help change the world for good. Furthermore, Hack4Impact will develop a web application to help facilitate the matching of tutors with children in Cambodia who will help the children learn English. The author demonstrates that “the projects they develop not only allow them to learn but also give them meaningful experiences and opportunities to contribute to something beyond this campus,” proving that they make software products to make the world a better place. Another resource Students increase social media use over stay-at-home order from Daily Illini will help explore what can change when a student uses technology more than they did previously in their life. Increased use of social media can social impact many students on campus, positively, or negatively. The article displays what certain social media have done to impact a student. For example, “increased online interaction has highlighted Snapchat as a communication staple for the current students’ generation,” as opposed to mobile text messages. The author also demonstrates how a student uses a social media platform to enhance her business. She notes that “by using Instagram, I can also turn my platform into a business platform, in order to see how many views I have to review how much interest there is in my product.” Not only does the author use example from students, but also includes data on phone usage before, during, and after the pandemic. The report was released by App Annie, a global provider of mobile market data, saying that “phone usage worldwide has gone up by 20% during the COVID pandemic.” This key event was used by the author to build onto their story, as well as another data report later in the article involving a social media marketing tool that provides analytics called NapoleanCat, showing the increase of social media users from February to March, the peak of the pandemic. Overall, both sources provide strong answers to my inquiry through data, statistics, and recent events. They summarize their evidence through this data to further back up the points being made throughout the articles.

5 Takeaways to Integrate to Survey

  1. Test the survey with family or friends for feedback before sending it out to people that will actually participate in the finalized survey.
  2. Make sure the instructions are clear and precise for the reader.
  3. Keep the questionnaire shorter and response options concise. Also consider the order of the questions, as some responses can be impacted by other questions.
  4. Answer choices should anticipate all possibilities because respondents might have more than one answer in mind or may have a hard time deciding.
  5. Ensure that the answers to the questions help meet the objectives of the survey.

These are relevant to me because it’s important that I get clear, accurate, and honest responses to my questions. The odds that people will complete my survey will be maximized if I keep the questions short and clear and all available answers to it. Accuracy will be determined if I avoid suggesting answers from the formulation of my questions.