MOCKFORD, C. and TORRENS, G., 1997. Student use of internet resources in the context of design and technology project work. IDATER 1997 Conference, Loughborough University
This paper reports a pilot study concerning the use of Internet based resource materials amongst
a group of undergraduate students. The aim of the study was to examine the extent to which
students were using the Internet to support client based technology project work. In addition,
the students’ perceived valuation of these resources in the context of practical project work
A cohort of one hundred final year students of Industrial Design and Technology was involved
in a client based design project. Data collected from seventy-one students via a questionnaire
identified that all students had used the Internet facilities of the University.
Subsequent to the questionnaire, interviews were held with six selected students who showed a
strongly positive or negative response to using the Internet to support their project work. The
paper discusses key factors influencing student engagement with this resource during the process
of designing. The results indicated that most students accepted the resource was useful. Perceived
barriers to its more widespread use were slow downloading of information, access to computer
facilities and the cost in time and money to learn and use the software and hardware involved.
The paper also highlights the need for considered design of both questionnaire and interview
schedule when studying student cohorts.