“Ars spoke with Steven Lareau, the IT chair for Clemson’s student advisory council. According to Lareau, Clemson previously “had an awful web-based e-mail system” (SquirrelMail). Lareau says that they compared Microsoft’s Outlook/Exchange combo with Gmail, and Gmail came out on top.”
When I see students frustratingly loose USB drives with their term papers, have to use multiple online systems like BlackBoard or another CMS, and a University email system all which typically do not facilitate communication for group assignments resulting in rounds of emailed documents where there are no IM clients to connect with fellow students in their classes who all use some kind of online presence like MySpace or FaceBook to keep up on their social lives and talk about their classes, I come to completely understand those students’ view of an overly-distant-administrative-technological bureaucracy that seems to clearly not be paying attention to who is really using the technology. Several students where I’m getting my masters have already signed up for Google Apps Team Edition. I don’t doubt the time will be here soon when we have a critical mass of students avoiding closed, stale, clunky, university email and comfortably collaborating online.
TTW Contributor: Lee LeBlanc