Study Room Observation

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Observations of Furman Study Rooms
Juhee Bhatt
Furman University

The Furman University James B. Duke Library contains several study rooms; students have reported multiple complaints of improper usages of these rooms. The outlines of the rules are placed in each study room and they clearly state that a study room must contain two or more people. These rules are made to prevent study rooms from being used improperly. Often, people will place their materials in these rooms and then leave. Other times, one person will take up a study room instead of using a table in the common area to study. Individuals who use study rooms incorrectly keep groups of two or more from using them properly. This leaves an excess of groups to study
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My partner DJ Moulton, and I made rounds around the library checking each study room at thirty minutes intervals between 8:00 PM and 10:00 PM for two consecutive days (February 3 and February 4). To conduct the observation DJ and I both assigned each other different parts. DJ would check the study rooms on the base floor of the library, while I would check the first floor. Before beginning the observations, we went over the guidelines of the experiment and the operational definitions. Both of us had a handmade chart to keep the quantitative results of our observations. After making rounds that lasted approximately six or seven minutes, DJ and I would recalibrate and exchange our results. We immediately documented our findings and added them to the results, which were then placed on an advanced chart that combined our findings. At the end of the second day DJ and I added all the ways rooms are being used ineffectively (rooms empty with materials, one person in the study room, or empty) and compared it to the rooms that were used effectively (rooms that contained two or more people). For the data of the results refer to the Appendix…show more content…
Lei, the prime environment for college students to study is after class; however very few students conduce to the advantages of studying immediately after class. A prime time for studying is early mornings, and evenings (Lei 2015, 196). Alterations to the data could have been made because the observation was done between the time frame of 8 PM and 10 PM. This two-hour period over the course of two days limited the opportunity to see a strong correlation between time and study rooms being used. Moreover, Dr. Lei also mentions that students require quiet atmospheres to efficiently study. Because these hours are a prime to study, it is also possible that many study rooms were taken due to the social atmosphere outside of these study rooms. Perhaps looking at the usage of study rooms at varying hours, when the environment provided different circumstances; the results would have differed. Although clear operational definitions were made, both DJ and I were confronted with situations that were not discussed prior. For example, when walking around making observations some subjects would be leaving the room. To diffuse this from happening, we divided two hours into 5 sets of 30 minutes; however, we were still faced with this problem. This could have altered data, as we had to make the decision if the room was empty because they were leaving, or ineffective because there was only one person in the room just moments
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