Home > BLOG 3, Capstone > Blog 3: Community Information Surveys

Blog 3: Community Information Surveys

As many others mentioned in their posts, I was not at all excited for this assignment, however the process itself did not turn out to be completely terrible. I work for the Division of IT on campus and was able to get a large majority of my first fifteen there. The second fifteen proved to be a little more difficult since I had exhausted my resources at work. I ended up having to venture downtown and a few other locations. Asking people to take the surveys and explain what they were for was slightly difficult. I had a number of people wanting to know what we were going to do with the results, and many who were uncomfortable with giving me their income. If I told them that it was for a class, they were a lot more willing to take it, but were very turned off by the length of the survey. Personally, I felt like the surveys were just added work. We won’t have the results of the survey’s until after our mapping presentations are complete I don’t really see what the purpose of them was if we weren’t able to base our maps off of our findings. Maybe having the surveys due before the mapping presentations would give us a better idea of what communication tools Columbia actually uses, rather than researching every medium and presenting it. The length of the surveys was also difficult. People’s attention spans are short and when you are stopping them on the sidewalk they don’t eactaly want to take ten minutes to read through the entire thing. I feel like a lot of my results would have been different had the survey been shorter, rather than them getting tired and circling “neutral”.

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  1. October 19, 2011 at 3:46 pm

    Good reflection on the process Annica.

    The survey and mapping processes are separate because they measure two different things. The survey measures Columbia citizens’ perceptions of how much information is available in Columbia and what sources of information they use. But citizens perceptions don’t equate directly to information being available or not. Your mapping effort determined what was actually available.

    For example, it’s possible that in the citizen survey that no citizens would mention getting their information from the library or from the NPR radio station or a certain web site. But even if citizens don’t mention one of those information sources, it might still exist. So the survey gets citizens thoughts about information and your mapping comprehensively documents what is actually available.

    Putting these two different pieces of information together should help you propose some way to improve community information.

    And, yes, the survey was a little long. But surveys typically walk that line between getting all of the information that is wanted/needed and participants threshold for bearable length.

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