University Students and Technologies: Usage, Consumption and Future Trends in the Educational Context

University Students and Technologies: Usage, Consumption and Future Trends in the Educational Context

Nicola Cavalli (Università degli Studi di Milano-Bicocca, Milano, Italy), Paolo Ferri (Università degli Studi di Milano-Bicocca, Milano, Italy), Arianna Mainardi (Università degli Studi di Milano-Bicocca, Milano, Italy), Andrea Mangiatordi (Università degli Studi di Milano-Bicocca, Milano, Italy), Marina Micheli (Università degli Studi di Milano-Bicocca, Milano, Italy), Michelle Pieri (Università degli Studi di Milano-Bicocca, Milano, Italy), Andrea Pozzali (Università Europea di Roma, Rome, Italy) and Francesca Scenini (Università degli Studi di Milano-Bicocca, Milano, Italy)
Copyright: © 2013 |Pages: 13
DOI: 10.4018/ijdldc.2013100102
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Abstract

This paper presents and discusses data on the use of technology in general and of Web 2.0 platforms and services in particular by students at the University of Milano-Bicocca. The data was obtained from a survey on media consumption habits and usage of new web technologies conducted by the university's Observatory on New Media, NuMediaBiOs. Research of this kind provides a valuable basis for the development, adaptation and improvement of existing services and offerings involving new technologies in educational contexts, given that for new technologies to be successfully integrated it is critical to have access to detailed information about how they are currently deployed by users (in this case, undergraduate students on basic degree programmes). Such analyses have implications for a range of contexts, not least for the public educational institution in which they are carried out, namely the university.
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The Survey

This study, now in its third edition (Ferri et al., 2010; 2012) was conducted during the 2011-2012 academic year. Similarly to the previous editions, it involved a quantitative survey of the population of undergraduate students enrolled on basic degree programmes at Milano-Bicocca University. The instrument used was a 33 item questionnaire, divided into six parts: demographic information, relationship with technology, cultural consumption habits, the role of Internet in everyday life, use of Web 2.0 platforms and services in general and of Facebook in particular. The dedicated section on Facebook was a new addition in relation to the earlier editions of the survey: the growing popularity of this social network not only amongst the university student population but throughout society as a whole led us to view it as a phenomenon deserving of more in-depth investigation.

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