Friday, 31 July 2009

Swine flu, Student PCs and trolls

Been a hectic week this week - but then the week before you go off on holiday often is!

Lots of swine flu planning - especially around what happens in September/October time when all the students come back and we have some very staff intensive processes such as registration. How will we cope with that if lots of our staff are off? Already drawing up lists of volunteers from other teams, and even some of our out of work children are being drafted in!

As usual at this time of year we're gearing up to launches of new services and that mild panic has arrived as September starts to get closer. We'll be launching our collaboration environment uSpace to students, as well as rolling out Google Mail and Calendar to all taught students.

Hope it improves their opinion of us! For the last few years we've taken part in the annual student satisfaction survey, and began with a very high satisfaction rating of about 84%. We've managed to push that up to 87%, but can't get it any higher, and for the last 2 years it's remained the same. I got a quick heads up yesterday of our rating this year, and it's the same again. Some variation between Faculties, with the Medics particularly liking us, and the Engineers not.

Biggest complaint - not enough PCs available - despite having over 1700 on campus, 550 available 24 hour a day, and about 95% ownership of laptops or PCs by students. This is a particular problem at exam time with 64% of students expressing dissatisfaction with the provision of PCs at that time of year. This is despite the fact that we know there is never a time when all PCs are in use - there are always free ones, it's just that students only want to use the ones in the Information Commons and won't go anywhere else. I think until we provide one each for them, there won't be enough. And I seem to remember saying that last year......

This is the last blog post for a couple of weeks - I'm off on leave, but will twitter occasionally.

Unfortunately, I'm going to have to turn comment moderation on for the next two weeks. This is not something I want to do, or have done before, but over the last few weeks there's been a rather nasty troll leaving rude and abusive comments on here and I'd like to avoid them building up while I'm not here to look after this blog. Hope they get the message and go away.

See you all soon!


silince said...

I hope that the new googlemail will have a 'redirect' function like the existing webmail. It makes fielding enquiries far more efficient when the final recipient can reply straight to the enquirer without cutting and pasting addresses. Fingers crossed!

Graham Hill said...

have a wonderful and well deserved break. Best Wishes, Graham