Printing at WSA: an update

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Hi, everyone! This is Venny, the Winchester Campus President, with an update on printing. The WSA Committee and I would like to thank everyone who participated in the survey we sent out at the end of last semester. I’m really happy to say that nearly 300 of you have completed the survey, leaving over 5,000 words worth of comments! Without further ado, here are the results:

On average, how much do you spend on printing per term?

  • £85

Note: We received a variety of responses to this question ranging from no money spent on printing to over £500. After adding all of those values and calculating the average, it resulted in £85 per student per term.

On average, how often do you need to print?

  • A few times per week: 52%
  • Every day: 27%
  • Every two weeks: 12%
  • A few times per month: 5%
  • A few times per term: 3%
  • Other: 2%

How essential is colour printing to your degree?

  • Very essential: 80%
  • Somewhat essential: 16%
  • Not at all essential: 4%

How essential is black and white printing to your degree?

  • Very essential: 46%
  • Somewhat essential: 45%
  • Not at all essential: 9%

Where do you print most often?

  • On campus: 72%
  • On a personal printer: 17%
  • On the Halls printer: 10%
  • Other: 1%

There were dozens of comments left in the survey, too. Below are some of the ones that echoed the overall theme around the whole survey:

  • As a WSA student, all of my research/photos in my sketchbook are required to be in colour. I have my own printer but the ones at Uni are better quality which is why I choose to print here and it gets very expensive very quickly. As well as this, sometimes the printers break and then charge you even though you haven’t printed anything. This has happened to me and several of my friends.
  • It’s expensive and I think the University should give us free printing amount. For example, when I was the student in the University of Nottingham Trent, they gave us £20 per term to print.
  • Printing at University is completely essential to my work. If I didn’t spend as much as I do on printing I would fail my degree. Printing puts me into overdraft because it is so extortionate. Due to doing Graphic Design much of my work is on a larger scale and so have to print A3 coloured prints on an almost daily basis. At 50p a go if I’m printing a 16 page booklet that’s £8. That is for one test. I’d say I’d have to print maybe 10 of these before I’m happy with my final design for a crit. And then after a crit I have to make lots of changes and print again. Sometimes due to the massive cost I can’t afford to print what I want at the time. This puts me behind on projects and creates a lot of extra stress. On courses where printing is essential printing should be subsidised. It has such a massive implication on my degree and is ridiculous that 1 A3 sheet is 50p. Something needs to be done by the Uni as this is my biggest issue about University.
  • We have to pay a tuition fee and for our own artist materials this is prohibitive enough when making work and experimenting with different media and we have to pay for photocopying – it’s an outrageous amount of money on photocopying.

Next Steps:

Over the past few years, the Students’ Union and our Course Reps have continuously brought up the issue of printing costs at WSA, however this time we have written feedback from hundreds of you. The results will be used as evidence in further discussions with the University to reduce printing costs, especially colour printing. One possible solution includes introducing at least a few free printers on campus, similar to what VP Education, Sam Dedman, is working on.

So far, we have scheduled a meeting within the Students’ Union where we will discuss these results and the specific actions we can take further. The results will also be brought to the attention of our WSA Head of School, and I have already given some of the feedback to iSolutions, who were very supportive.

So far, the University has taken steps to help, including providing Year 3 students with £20 in the second semester to help with the printing of final projects, but we are hopeful that this is only the beginning.

If you would like to help this initiative, please fill out a You Make Change request asking the University to make printing more affordable at WSA. The Students’ Union, the WSA Committee, and I will continue to work towards solving this issue and lifting this massive financial burden off your shoulders. Hopefully, we will reach a breakthrough soon.

Keep posted on the Facebook page for all the latest information.

Venezia Georgieva

Winchester Campus President

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