Blog Post 3

The research is going very well. We now have a sample size of 196 students. Half of the students go to school at the USST in China and the other half are Pace Students.   We asked both samples of students the same set of 22 questions and then derived empirical results from their answers.

Results from my study were that 99% of the US and 90% of the Chinese students in the samples used laptops or tablets. The US results are not shocking however, I was surprised that 90% of Chinese students were using laptops. A majority of Chinese and US students use laptops almost every day. In addition, a majority of Chinese and US students never use desktops.

When looking further, the data shows that when using desktops for academic purposes, both Chinese and US students primarily do homework or email. The data shows that when using laptops for academic purposes, both samples do homework or email. When using laptops/desktops for personal purposes, the digression in use exists in the way student watch movies, videos, and TV.

When asked for a reason why students don’t use laptops in class, a majority responded that they prefer to take notes by hand. Almost 30% of Chinese students do not use laptops because it makes it difficult for them to pay attention to the teacher. While 25% of US students do not use laptops, because the teacher does not allow the use of a laptop in class. When asked how students perceive in class laptop use to contribute to their academic success, Chinese and US students responded most heavily ‘somewhat’. However, more Chinese responded ‘very much’ and more US than Chinese responded ‘not at all’ or ‘very little’.

It has been challenging to acquire the third set of students that I had originally wanted to survey, these are the Pace students who were born and educated in China. I am currently deciding whether or not to pursue these students for my survey. A success of this research has been that I was able to present at the Eastern Economic Conference to a group of my peers and other economists. This was an external professional conference that made me perfect the work I have done thus far in order to present. So far, this experience has been very worthwhile. I feel I have learned a great deal about the successes and challenges of economic research. I also feel I have developed a great mentoring relationship with my faculty advisor.

Mid-Year Blog

In my research, we’ve made significant progress.  We have derived the empirical results from the Chinese students who took the survey in China in Excel.  So far we have found that males and females are using technology differently.  We have also found that technology is being used for different purposes and in varied concentrations in rural and urban areas.

Mid-way through this semester, we decided that adding another sample would benefit the research . We decided to add a sample of Pace students so that our paper can be a comparison between three different groups: Chinese students born and educated in China, Chinese students born in China and completing their higher education at Pace, and students born and educated in the United States and completing their higher education at Pace.  We believe the additional data set will improve our model and increase the significance of our work.

We have now begun the stages of administering surveys to students at Pace.  We are specifically curious to find out the differences in answers from students who were born and raised in the United States, and students who were born and raised in China, but came to the US to complete their higher education. We hope to receive 200 responses before the end of the semester.  We will be working hard during the winter break to complete the data analysis so that we can be ready to present our paper at the EEA Conference next semester.


UGR Post One: “College Students’ Use of Technology and Academic Performance: A US – China Comparison”

My paper, “College Students’ Use of Technology and Academic Performance: A U.S. – China Comparison” is a comparative study of the effect of the use of technology on academic performance of college students studying in China and the United States.   As technology use continues to be on a rise among college students, educators and scholars have been raising a question of the relationship between the use of technology and academic performance. This study will be unique as it will compare and contrast the relationship between the use of technology and academic performance between three categories of students: Chinese students studying in China, Chinese students studying in the United States, and United State’s students studying in the United States.We designed a survey instrument of 22 questions and polled 98 Chinese students at the University of Shanghai for Science and Technology.  We will further survey Pace University students, and target students born and educated in the United States as well as students born and educated in China, but choosing the United States as their place of undergraduate education.  The survey asks questions about gender, year, major, types of uses of technologies, types of technologies used in classrooms, and general access to technologies. I first had to enter all the raw data in Excel and learn how to use filters. We have summarized the data and are working on presenting the descriptive statistics in tables and graphs.  After we define our dependent and independent variables and come up with meaningful relationships between them, we would like to enter the data into STATA and run multiple regressions to see if those relationships are strong enough to support our initial hypothesis that a relationship between academic experience and use of technology exists.  Then we will analyze the results that we will get via Excel summaries and STATA results.  

Our goal is to prepare the paper for the presentation at the Eastern Economic Association Conference which will take place in NYC on February 23-26th, 2017.  We also hope to prepare the paper for a publication in the Eastern Economic Journal or perhaps in Atlantic Economic Journal.  I feel that this research is an act of me taking ownership over my education.   I feel that this will is the most intensive and comprehensive project I have ever worked on.  I think it will help me gain confidence to conduct further research. I also hope that the results of this study are meaningful and that the results will give educators, students and parents some idea as to how students can use technology to be more successful in the classroom and beyond.   The results of this study will have important implications as we hope to draw recommendation for college students and educators.