Student Affairs

Campus Quality Fee Allocation Student Preference Survey

Fee Allocation & Accountability Process

November 7, 2008


Background

The Allocation and Accountability Procedures for the Campus Quality (CQ) Fee call for a survey of student opinion of proposed uses of the fee in the categories of technology and student services. One million dollars is available to fund technology projects and $200,000 is available to fund student service proposals. Proposals/suggestions for the use of the CQ fee were solicited from student organizations identified by the President of the Associated Students, CSUN faculty and staff experts within the technology and student service fields, academic and divisional administrators.

Proposals/suggestions were categorized and a survey was developed from the categories (Exhibit A.) The random sample of 7,500 students, freshman through graduate students, enrolled for fall semester 2008 received an email invitation to participate and a web link to access the survey. A response rater of 10.8% (N=807) was achieved which represents a confidence interval of 90% with a sampling error of 3% (in other words, we can have 90% confidence that the survey results are within 3% of the true results of the population.)

 

Results

Exhibit B contains the survey questions and response options percentage. In the category Access to Technology and Technology Applications, "Expand access to open computer labs" was ranked first or second by 81% of the respondents; "Upgrade and expand wireless access" was ranked first or second by 70.6% of respondents. In the category Library Enhancement Options, "Create a student lounge for casual study, reading, and relaxing" was ranked first or second by 52.8% of respondents; "Expand e-library collection (digital books and resource material) was ranked first or second by 52.8% of respondents. It should be noted that while the student lounge first and second ranks exceeded those for the e-library the e-library actually received the greater number of first place ranks, 30.2% to 28%. In the category Academic Support Service Options, "Increase availability of peer tutors, mentors, advisors" was ranked first or second by 61.2% of respondents; "Upgrades to existing academic department lab and lab resources" was ranked first or second by 57.6% of respondents. In the category Improvement in Service, "Increase in the quantity of free printing services" was ranked first or second by 50.8% of respondents, "Improve advisement centers' access, service, and communication through the use of technology" was ranked first or second by 47% of the respondents.

The participants were also asked to indicate how important each of the categories was to his/her campus experience. Technology and Technology Applications was rated as very important or most important by 74.1%, Academic Support Services 70.7%, Library Enhancements 64.8%, and Improvements in Services 64.2%.

Vice Presidents' Funding Recommendations

Exhibit C contains the proposal categories in order of students' importance, the category response options recommended for funding in students' rank order, and the actual proposal(s) associated with the response option that are recommended by the Vice Presidents for funding.

Access to Technology and Technological Applications: Two proposals are recommended under the option "Expand Access to Open Computer Labs", USU Computer Lab Expansion and Update Oviatt Library Computers. One proposal is recommended under the option "Upgrade and Expand Wireless Network."

Recommendation 1: The expansion of the USU computer lab will increase the number of computer workstations from 70 to 125 and increase the computer training lab from 20 to 25 stations. Additionally, the lab will be relocated in order to increase the number of hours the lab is open, increase the reception/help desk area, and double the number of scanners and printers. The one-time cost of the expansion and relocations is $262,172. On-going operating cost of the lab will be funded by USU.

Recommendation 2: Oviatt Library provides over 200 computer workstations for student use. The computers are heavily used. Many of the computers are not up-to-date thus reducing their usefulness. Upgrading 130 computers, 90 for the Collaboratory and 40 for the Reference Room, will increase their efficiency and thereby student productivity. Additionally, 20 laptop computers which are available for checkout in the library will be replaced. Cost of the computer update is $154,000.

Recommendation 3: The CSU state-supported funding currently supports wireless upgrades only in state-owned academic and administrative buildings. In addition, the CSU state funding for wireless is solely based upon the size of the building, not taking into account the usage of the space; so state funding will not meet our CSUN wireless needs in high density areas such as large lecture halls or busy hallways. Three projects are recommended: (1) Enhance wireless with state-owned building but not covered by state funding, approximately $140,900 one-time and $8,700 annual maintenance expense, (2) Upgrade existing but aging wireless access points in external and non-state buildings not covered by state funding, approximately $146,170 one -time and $7,310 annual maintenance, (3) Expand wireless coverage in external and non-state buildings not covered by state funding, approximately $84,000 one-time and $4,200 annual maintenance to provide wireless coverage of outdoor spaces, $54,000 one-time and $2,700 annual maintenance to provide wireless coverage in parking lots. Total one-time expenditures $349,470, $22,910 annual maintenance.

Total recommended expenditures in this category is: $788,552

Academic Support Services: Three proposals are recommended under the option "Increase Availability of Peer Tutors, Mentors, and Advisors", Athlete Academic Enhancement, Academic Tutors and Peer Advisors, and Residence Hall Academic Mentors.

Recommendation 4: The Athletic Department applied for and was awarded an academic enhancement grant from the NCAA in spring 2008. The grant was designed to provide academic resources to improve team Academic Performance Rates (an eligibility index against which NCAA determines compliance). The NCAA grant only partially covered the proposed program that provides peer mentors and tutors to new and academically at-risk continuing student athletes. Failure of athletes to meet Academic Performance Rates jeopardizes CSUN ability to recruit, offer scholarships, and solicit community financial support. The one-time allocation of $11,900 is recommended.

Recommendation 5: The Division of Academic Affairs has consulted its constituency and identified primary areas of need for academic support services. It was determined that additional writing tutors are needed for the Learning Resource Center, and specific area tutoring in the College of Engineering and Computer Science, College of Business and Economics, College of Science and Mathematics, and the College of Health and Human Development. The Vice Presidents recommended a one-time expenditure of $25,500 which will provide 15 hours of tutoring at each site.

Student help as advisors/mentors is needed to support the increased work load of the colleges' Student Service Center/EOP Satellites and the Advising Resource Center/EOP for Undecided students. There has been significant enrollment growth but without augmentation of resources for the units providing the bulk of the academic advisement. Peer advisors would provide much needed support to ensure the delivery of timely and accurate academic advisement. A one-time allocation of $ 35,900 which will provide 7 peer advisors at 20 hours per week is recommended.

Supplemental instruction is provided for courses with high D, U, and F averages. This service is provided by Teaching Assistants and helps students to pass these challenging courses. Only a limited number of courses have supplemental instruction due to limited resources. The Vice Presidents recommend one-time funding of $28,000 for 5 TA's.

Recommendation 6: It is well-known by the staff working in Residential Life that as students fall behind in the classroom they tend to over-socialize and disengage from their academics. Often these students negatively affect their community by creating an environment that is not supportive of academic success. The Office of Residential Life is increasingly focused on creating conditions that promote student academic success and retention of students living in residence. One strategy that has been used in other residence hall systems to assist students keep the focus on academics has been peer academic mentors. The Office of Residential Life has proposal a pilot project to test that concept in our residence halls. The pilot would include three residence halls and one Peer Academic Mentor per hall. The Peer Academic Mentors will provide programming related to academic skill development, work with RAs to balance an emphasis on social community with academic community, and to guide residences to academic support resources. The Vice Presidents recommended funding of $40,000 to employee the Academic Peer Mentors, provide housing (comparable to the RAs), and to provide programmatic and operating funds.

Total recommended expenditures in this category is: $788,552

 

Library Enhancements: Three recommendations are made in this category:  Student North Lounge ,  Electronic Books and Student Research , and  24 hour Access for 7 Days during Exam Time. 

Recommendation 7: Library surveys have shown that students prefer comfortable furniture where they can use their laptops, while others prefer study tables. The reconfiguration of the north part of the reference rooms creates the opportunity to create a student-friendly study lounge. The Vice Presidents recommend a one-time allocation of $41,400 to provide the furniture and shelving for the new study lounge.

Recommendation 8: The Library has proposed the creation of an online library (My iLibrary) with over 150,000 searchable titles and representing a wide variety of close to 400 publishers, both very well known and prestigious publishing houses as well as smaller and less well known ones. The titles are in 20 subject areas including education, fine arts, geography, history, music, science, social science, technology, and general works. Additional content includes intergovernmental agency publications such as those of the United Nations agencies. The Vice Presidents recommend one-time funding of $25,000 for this project.

Recommendation 9: Students have frequently voiced the need for 24 hour/7 day access to the Oviatt Library during final exam time. Typically the Library does extend hours but is unable to provide 24 hour access due to limited funding. Achieving 24 hour access would require funding for an additional 14 student employees for 70 hours ($11,760) and for two supervisory staff overtime ($5,500). The Vice Presidents recommend a one-time allocation of $17,260 in order to provide 24 hours/ 7 day access during final exam time.

Total recommended expenditures in this category is $83,660.

 

Campus Quality Fee Budget Reconciliation

Technology Projects$1,000,000 
USU Computer Lab Expansion $ 262,172 $737,828
Upgrade Library Computers 154,000 583,828
Upgrade Wireless Network 447,980 135,848
Electronic Books and Student Research 25,000 110,848
Balance   $ 110,848*

*Maintained as a contingency fund is support of the projects.

Student Services$2,000,000 
Athlete Academic Enhancement 11,900 $188,100
Academic Peer Tutors, Advisors , SI 89,400 99,700
Upgrade Wireless Network 40,000 58,700
Electronic Books and Student Research 41,400 17,300
24 hr/7 days Library Access 17,260 40
Balance   $ 40

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