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Expanding the network: We're listening to you!
Author: Stephanie Asling, Office of Information Technology
Posted: November 20, 2017

You spoke, and we listened. The Office of Information Technology (OIT) has completed a six month project to improve or establish access to the Portland State University Wi-Fi network in all classrooms. From the beginning of this fall quarter, thousands of students have had access to significantly improved classroom coverage across PSU. In total, sixty-four classrooms received the upgrades.

OIT funded the ambitious network expansion after viewing the results of the EDUCAUSE Center for Analysis and Research (ECAR) 2016 Student Technology Survey. The survey found that PSU students were exceptionally tech-minded, with the vast majority of the population owning at least two internet-capable devices. Smartphones and laptops took top spots as the most popular devices, showing the importance of portability and flexibility in the ways that students access learning materials. When asked about PSU’s network accessibility, students gave a 65% satisfaction rating and left many comments stressing the need for more and better Wi-Fi access in certain parts of campus.

While PSU ranked 13% higher than other universities in ease of logging on to Wi-Fi, we continually strive to be the best. OIT began its network expansion in January 2017 with one goal: to provide adequate Wi-Fi coverage to all classrooms. Of 350 total classrooms, 64 were identified for improvement. The classrooms chosen for upgrading underwent several rounds of assessments before the end of spring break. By the start of September, each was within range of a PSU wireless network access point.

Thanks go out to all who participated in the 2016 ECAR Student Technology Survey. As always, your feedback helps us build better, more convenient access to technology on campus.