There’s a running joke that graduate students only know where two buildings on campus are: the building where their classes are held, and the library. Bonus points for other amenities like student union, health center, and gym. As a graduate student at IU, you should add one more to your list: the University Information Technology Services (UITS) building.
IU has got the students’ backs when it comes to technology–something that you can definitely gather from the other emissaries’ blog posts. I’ll share with you three of my favorite offerings.
1) Woodburn Hall: As a social psych grad student, I spend a large amount of time analyzing my data. This is quite difficult without statistical analysis software, my favorite of which is SPSS. On the second floor of Woodburn Hall is the Research Analytics wing, where you can purchase statistical analysis software (like SPSS!) for a severely discounted rate. What would cost thousands of dollars in the real world costs $50. For two licenses! (Also found in Woodburn Hall, but less pertinent to technology per se, are statistical consultants. You can take your data and the questions you need help exploring to them and they will walk you through the kinds of analyses you should do. This is really helpful if there’s a difficult kind of regression, like HLM, or logistical, that you need to do.)
2) IU Anyware/IUWare: While we’re discussing severely discounted software, I need to give IU Anyware a shout. This is a website that allows you to log in with your IU username and passphrase, and then run a bunch of different programs on your computer, without actually downloading them. IUWare is slightly different–from this website you can actually download the software to your computer. For example, the entire Microsoft Office suite is free. Free! If I ever need to buy new software I always check IUWare first–there’s a good chance I can get it through IU for free, or at the very least for pennies on the dollar.
3) IU Library copying –> PDF: Although I haven’t actually set foot in the Wells Library, I am very fond of their online services. When I was studying for my qualifying exam this summer, I did a lot of reading. 85% of the articles came from easily-accessible online sources, but that other 15% came from what I can only describe as the deepest depths of the annals of social psychology. Difficult to find doesn’t even begin to describe it. The IU library has this handy service where you can request a PDF version of something that you can’t find anywhere else. I usually used it for book chapters (I’m lookin’ at you, Handbook of Social Psychology). The best part is that they email you the PDF, so there’s minimal effort required. It’s not as instant as looking something up online, but the longest turnaround wasn’t too bad–a little less than 2 days, and that was because the library didn’t have the book so they had to initiate an interlibrary loan.
Any time I’ve wondered “can I do…?” when it comes to tech needs at IU, the answer has been a resounding, “Yes!” UITS is one of the best, so make sure to take advantage of all they have to offer!