Week 05 – Lab Reflection + Reading Response

Lab – University Archive Visit Report:

2 Questions:

  • How have the means of communication between undergraduate students at UofI changed over time through the innovation of technology?
  • What social impact has technology had since the 19th century?

This question is not answerable with a simple yes or no, but rather requires synthesis and analysis of ideas and sources prior to the composition of an answer. Using the University of Illinois digital collections, I will be able to understand how different technologies have impacted students positively and negatively. My search terms will be “technology”, “innovation”, and “communication”.

Lab Assignment + Reflection

4 Screenshots that can help provide answers to my research question:

#1: This picture provides the abstract of an analysis of the use of the Internet with observation and interviewing. It also displays how data and numbers were also used by different methods and approaches. These materials are relevant to students because it provides research and statistics. This will help me further determine how the use of different technologies affected communication. Source:http://hdl.handle.net/2142/79612

#2: These two pictures demonstrate data taken from the digital collections that show the purpose of students’ use of technology through email and factors that drive students not to use this kind of technology. I can support my question with this kind of evidence because it provides a bias from a student’s perspective. Furthermore, this can be relevant to students as they can see data that shows certain factors that drive a student to use a certain technology. Source:http://hdl.handle.net/2142/79612

#3: This image provides results to questions that can relate to or even support my own question. The page numbers provided after each question will allow me to briefly find specific answers to my question and also raise other questions that I didn’t think of previously. A concern that may arise is determining how one communication impacted students one way, versus how another did not impact students at all. Source:http://hdl.handle.net/2142/79612

#4: This picture explains the focus and purpose of the use of Internet-based communication. It shows that different communication methods were used as part of the research to determine how often they are used and their effectiveness. The only concerns that I would have for these results are inaccurate data or misinformation, but with enough evidence, this source will provide answers to my inquiry. Source:http://hdl.handle.net/2142/79612

Developing Line of Inquiry:

Through interview data, survey data, and library-archive materials provided in my source, I will be able to answer and even build off of my questions. As I read through my source, I found that much of the research involved interviews with students which then gathered data to prove which technologies anticipate efficiency.

Reading Response:

I liked how Andrew Yang incorporated the quote “The future is already here—it’s just unevenly distributed” by William Gibson at the beginning of chapter three. It demonstrates the first point Yang makes about families with different incomes and how people question their normality. He makes a note that “What feels normal to each of us is based on our context” and uses college students or graduates education as examples (Yang Chapter 3). He displayed a chart of different genders and races and the percentages of how high they get to their education on average. This data allowed me to understand where I stand from an educational point of view and where being normal is on the spectrum. Yang also helps me connect to my friends’ context and how “the odds of them all being college graduates if you took a random sampling of Americans would be about one-third of 1 percent, or 0.0036. The likelihood of four or more of them being college graduates would be only about 4 percent,” (Yang Chapter 3). This further addresses how Yang uses numbers and percentages to clarify his point.

Andrew Yang further demonstrates data and statistics when he talked about the net worth of Americans with a certain degree in education. I noticed a trend that net worth goes up with age, but other factors like gender and race cause uneven distribution. According to the U.S Census, for average Americans with high school diplomas or some college, the median net worth hovers around $36,000, including home equity. Normally it would go up with more education, but with the data provided on the median net worth and assets of people with different backgrounds, “the racial disparities are dramatic, with black and Latino households holding dramatically lower assets across the board and whites and Asians literally having 8 to 12 times higher levels of assets on average” (Yang Chapter 3). The evidence to this is presented from the Survey of Income and Program Participation and led me to interpret the message that Yang is anticipating to the audience.

Yang’s evidence also relates to and even questions our humanity. He talks about how most people don’t even like their jobs, especially right after they graduate. Additionally, he uses numbers and percentages to explain his point, and “According to Gallup, only 13 percent of workers worldwide report being engaged with their jobs. The numbers are a little better in America, with 32 percent saying they were engaged with their work in 2015” (Yang Chapter 7). This changed my perspective on the rarity that you’ll meet someone who actually likes their job. Normally I wouldn’t think that I’d struggle to find work that I am excited about, unless if I have financial goals and pressures to meet. Even though I haven’t graduated college yet, I am already thinking of careers that I’d like to pursue, but now I’m also thinking about the position I’m in versus the position that the rest of the nation is in. Yang also states that “the relationship between humanity and work involves money, but in something of a negative correlation,” and how the jobs and roles that are the most human tend to pay lower than other jobs (Yang Chapter 7). By using statistics and data, Yang is not only able to display a message to the reader, but also changed my own perspective on the bigger things in life.

1 thought on “Week 05 – Lab Reflection + Reading Response”

  1. It was interesting to read about how only 32% of Americans say they actually engaged with their work in 2015. It seems like working is the means to an end but not the end goal for many Americans.

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