The Swiss Student Life Study: investigating the emergence of an undergraduate student community through dynamic, multidimensional social network data

András Vörös*, Zsófia Boda, Timon Elmer, Marion Hoffman, Kieran Mepham, Isabel J. Raabe, Christoph Stadtfeld

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Abstract

The Swiss StudentLife Study (SSL Study) is a longitudinal social network data collection conducted in three undergraduate student cohorts (N1 = 226, N2 = 261, N3 = 660) in 2016−2019. The main goal of the study was to understand the emergence of informal student communities and their effects on different individual outcomes, such as well-being, motivation, and academic success. To this end, multiple dimensions of social ties were assessed, combining computer-based surveys, social sensors, social media data, and field experiments. The dynamics of these social networks were measured on various time scales. In this paper, we present the design and data collection strategy of the SSL Study. We discuss practical challenges and solutions related to the data collection in four areas that were key to the success of our project: study design, research ethics, communication, and population definition.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)71-84
Number of pages14
JournalSocial Networks
Volume65
Early online date15 Dec 2020
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - May 2021

Keywords

  • Dynamic networks
  • Multidimensional networks
  • Education
  • Network data collection

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