Wednesday, October 17, 2007

What's Your Paper Count?

Mine is 578. My environmental impact was like running a 60W bulb for 163 hours which produced 4.849 kg of carbon dioxide and used 0.0072% of a tree. How big is this tree?

578 is a little high. I'm looking around my thesis carrel, and I do not have 578 pieces of paper laying about. I call shenanigans.

I just overheard a student say, "This is so guilt trip. This is awful."

MiddBlog wants to know: what's your paper count?

Update: This just in-- President Liebowitz's paper count was under 435 pages. He shares a printer with three others, so he could not provide an exact total of his usage. Either way, he puts us all to shame, to shame. That, and he refuses to buy a printer for his own office. Way to fight consumption!

Update: For those who were wondering, you can check your paper count via e-mail; you should have received one this afternoon.

Update 10/18: There has been some talk in the comments about Count Paper's suggestion that students should e-mail papers to professors. As one commenter noted, students can and do e-mail papers to professors, but then the professors end up printing them out anyhow. One of my professors uses a feature in Word (I think) that allows him to electronically comment and grade papers. Are there any MiddBlog readers out there whose professors have used this method? Did you like it? Are there any faculty MiddBlog readers who could chime in on the pros and cons of this method? This might be something for all professors to look into: imagine how much paper could be saved if a lot of professors went this route.

19 comments:

Anonymous said...

holy crap: 744

Anonymous said...

451...

Anonymous said...

28... sorry, I'm a sophmore!

Anonymous said...

a grand total of 22, and they STILL made me feel guilty! Not to mention the creepiness of being told you're being spied on...

Anonymous said...

how do you check your paper count?

Anonymous said...

No one is making you feel guilty - it's just a number that's being provided to raise awareness across campus. Everyone - students, faculty, staff - gets a paper count. A message with a number and some suggestions for printing more efficiently shouldn't make you feel guilty, it should make you say, "oh, I didn't know - I wonder where it'll be next month."

And no one is spying on you - no one is sitting there matching up your number to your name and sending you an email - it's a computer program that doesn't care how much you printed... its only job is to tell you what you printed and send you an email. Nothing more, nothing less.

Sophomore IS Student said...

Perhaps if they had announced that they were doing this, it would seem a little less creepy/big brother. 382. I take Intro IS and we have to print out all our texts--what do you expect?

another sophomore said...

fyi, I am quite aware that they're not spying on me as such, nor did I actually feel guilty for printing out 22 pieces of paper; I thought that given the general tone of MiddBlog, I could relate my first impressions half in jest.

I actually quite agree with Sophomore is Student-- it is not that I find the program unsettling, but I was rather taken aback to receive such an email from a mysterious source ("Count Paper?" Can't they at least tell us what group or department this is coming from?) unannounced.

On another note, I can vouch for myself and several other people that we already print double-sided, and that even if we email papers to professors, said professors will print out the papers in order to grade them and hand them back. It's not a bad program, per se; nor am I calling for its termination, but I'm not really sure how much of an impact it will have.

Anonymous said...

"On another note, I can vouch for myself and several other people that we already print double-sided, and that even if we email papers to professors, said professors will print out the papers in order to grade them and hand them back."

And that hits the nail on the head. Hopefully now students and professors can discuss ways in which to reduce the use of paper on campus! If it wasn't brought to anyone's attention, we could never talk about it in a meaningful way. Now everyone knows what their totals are - and knowing is half the battle.

Senior Feb said...

How about in addition to guilt-tripping the students about how many eReses they have to print out for their classes, they encourage groups and clubs on campus to use e-mail instead of the millions of paper posters that are all over BiHall and McCullough? Or how about we try to fix the printers in Sunderland that only print one-sided (and that somehow, I don't realize this until after I send the 20 page document to print).

Thom said...

Mine said 111. But there's no way that's true. I've printed 1 16page reading, and then maybe 20 pages of essays so far this year. Otherwise I've been emailing.

Sarah Franco said...

Senior Feb: I like that idea. I never look at the posters on the walls.

Anonymous said...

I think it's nice to be reminded of our printer usage on campus. But my concern is that the school is "guilt tripping" us for the wrong reasons. In the scheme of things printing is a relatively low emitter of carbon. As a student worker at the recycling center, the fact is that much of that paper is eventually recycled. There are more important things to worry about and raise awareness about. What about all the students with cars on campus? What about all the students who actually leave the lightbulbs on for 140 hours? And what about all the students who buy bottled water, (A huge contributor to carbon emissions, among other problems) when it's freely available in the dining halls. There are more significant things to track on campus.

Anonymous said...

And by dining halls I mean, bathroom/water fountains/everywhere on campus.

r.kellett said...

Yes, I've had a few professors use the Microsoft Word "track/review" function which allows for comments and corrections to be added in red on top of your paper, all electronically. After correcting the paper, professors email it back to you with the added remarks.

Beyond the fact that it is much easier on your eyes to print papers out to read, there is not a great reason why teachers don't use the function more often. Microsoft did not do a particularly good job in the design of the function but it works and it saves paper. I like when teachers type comments because it's legible, but there is something to be said for the paper papers because I think there is a greater chance you take the comments and corrections of your professor to heart when they are written in pen.

Anonymous said...

I think it's a good idea to use the correcting feature in Microsoft Word. The only drawback could be someone like me who never bought Microsoft Office in high school and got used to using and used to all the features of other programs. Not that it would be a hard switch, but it could be a bit of an annoyance.

Carol in LIS said...

Senior Feb - Thanks for letting us know of the one sided printing problem in Sunderland. We're working on fixing it for you!

Jason Mittell said...

I'm fine with students emailing me papers & sending comments electronically. Depending on the assignment & course, I use this as the default or an option, but sometimes it can be problematic. I've had students who don't use Word, and others who have troubles attaching & thus end up handing in things late "by accident." Personally I like having the papers electronically, as it lets me see a word count instead of funky margin adjustment to meet page requirements (yes, we all know that students do this!), but sometimes it's harder to grade on the fly via laptop than paper. More annoying is students who print one-sided - it's not only a waste of paper, but it means more to shlep around for me.

I'm flexible, and would go along with e-grading if it were a campus-wide push - but I can guarantee that the majority of faculty would not be on board...

Anonymous said...

Not to deter you from printing two-sided....but "paper count" counts the number of times you print - not the number of sheets of paper you use. So, you're number won't go down simply because you start printing double-sided. A little misleading.

on the books...