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Title:What STEM and International Graduate Students Value in Higher Education and Library Services
Author(s):Trei, Kelli; Yu, Jen-chien; Carlstone, Jamie
Abstract:Background: In 2016, the Ithaka S+R Graduate Student Survey was administered at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. According to the Institute of International Education, in 2016 international graduate students made up 49% of total on-campus enrollment. The majority of these students were enrolled in Liberal Arts & Science and the College of Engineering. While there is research into graduate students’ perception of institutions and their libraries, less has been published about STEM and international student perspectives. In this study we examine those perspectives and where they intersect. Methods: We filtered survey respondents to four groups: international STEM graduate students (ISG), STEM students, international students, and none of the above. We applied the answers of these populations to modules in the Ithaka study related to higher education and the role of the library. We conducted the Mann-Whitney-Wilcoxon test (MWW) using RStudio to compare the means of the ISG group and the Non-ISG group. The MWW test was used to detect overlap between the two groups. Then we compared the means of the variables identified to determine whether the STEM or international populations could explain the variance we observed. Results: All graduate student populations examined valued their college experience thus far. In other areas the MWW test showed statistically significant differences between the groups. ISG students valued collaboration with faculty and other students and involvement in extra-curricular activities such as clubs higher than other groups. They also placed less significance on the library as a physical or virtual space for accessing information. International students valued having a high GPA and put more value in the library’s role in supporting research and assisting with ethical issues like plagiarism. They also frequented physical libraries the most. Interestingly, only non-international, non-STEM students highly valued getting a job after graduating. Conclusions: International, STEM, and international-STEM graduate students seem to have perceptions of library service that are distinct from other graduate populations. Librarians and academic institutions should continue to assess the perceptions and experiences of graduate level international STEM students in order to ascertain how we can change or adjust services to meet needs and contribute to student success.
Issue Date:2018-02-18
Citation Info:Trei, K., Yu, J-c., Carlstone, J. (2018, February). What STEM and International Graduate Students Value in Higher Education and Library Services. Poster session presented at the Annual Association for the Advancement of Science, Austin, TX.
Genre:Conference Poster
Date Available in IDEALS:2018-04-02

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