Go-Print system points to homework ease

Owned and published by UMHB, The Bells is a biweekly publication. This content was previously published in print on the Opinions page. Opinions expressed in this section do not necessarily reflect the views of the staff or the university.

By Marisol Escobar

Students no longer have to scramble for change when making copies at the
library. A new printing system was implemented this semester in order to save the university money on ink and paper.

Each semester, students receive 200 printing points. Any not used will be deleted, and the balance goes back to 200 again. The credit does not have cash value nor does it roll over to the next school semester.

Points deducted from students’ accounts depend on which lab they use. At those labs where paper is provided, one page costs two points. If students
are required to bring their own paper, then one page costs one point.

“I know that can seem a bit confusing. I would prefer that we were consistent in all labs,” Associate Vice President for Technology Marshall
Eidson said. “But since InfoTech does not manage all of the labs, we felt that we needed the input of the lab supervisors, who are generally faculty members, and this is what we came up with.”

When students run out of points, they have the option to reload points at the bursar’s office in increments of $5, which will get them an additional 100 points.

“So far this semester, we are seeing about 10 students per week add points to their accounts. We will continue to monitor this throughout the semester,” Eidson said.

The new system has its perks.

“We like the new Go- Print system, and it saves some time for the library
staff,” Director of Learning Services Denise Karimkhani said. “It also saves
money.”

He said in the past, students would print, but not pick up the copies.

“The library would have to absorb the cost of the printouts,” he said. “This
new method charges to the students’ accounts, so the student is paying for it even if they never pick up the copies.”

Many students are also pleased with the new printing procedures.

“I didn’t know about this until a friend told me. I find it much easier than having to dig in my pocket for change to pay. You just print and go,” graphic design major Jamie Salgado said.

Business systems major Tyler Jones noticed careless printing habits before the new point system became effective.

“Our paper usage last year was super high, and they were trying to create a
system to make sure people just don’t abuse the school’s resources,” Jones said. “I’ve seen people print up to 50 pages at one time on meaningless stuff because they can. I think it’s a fair system.”

Printing has been reduced significantly by about 80 percent.

“Students are finding other places to print, such as printers in their dorm
room or apartments,” Eidson said. “But we hope it means that students are making wiser decisions about what to print and what to just read online.”

He noted that many journal articles are available in full-text in PDF or HTML format.

“Instead of printing these documents out, students can simply e-mail them to themselves. Or, instead of printing out an instructor’s PowerPoint slides in MyCampus, we hope students will just refer back to those slides online and only print when they feel it is absolutely necessary.”

Eidson encourages students to voice their opinion about the system.

He said, “We recognize that this is a cultural shift for UMHB, and we are also
working with faculty to embrace the program and be sensitive to student needs.”

Author: The Bells Staff

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