Thursday, December 11, 2008
Take the METS survey and help make Evansville's bus system more efficient
The City of Evansville has commissioned a study on the efficiency of its Metropolitan Evansville Transit System (METS) through the University of Southern Indiana’s Center for Applied Research (CAR).
The study, led by Dr. Mary Hallock Morris, director of the Master of Public Administration program, also provides a service learning opportunity for graduate and undergraduate students, who are collecting data and public opinion on a number of public transportation issues including availability of route information, hours of service, and routes.
Undergraduate students in Morris’s POLS 331: Political Inquiry I class surveyed bus riders at the transfer station in downtown Evansville and rode the buses in order to take a census of riders and determine route usage.
“It’s been a good project for the undergrads,” Morris said. “They learned about research methods, content analysis, empirical observation, and how to write and conduct a survey.” Two senior political science majors, Janis DuBois and Jessica Lantaff, serve as project interns.
Graduate students in the Master of Public Administration program, including Linda Bailey, Mandi Fulton, and Zachary Heronemus, with assistance from Dr. Katherine Draughon, director of Institutional Research and Assessment, designed a broader survey for the general public.
Take the METS efficiency survey here: www.usi.edu/mets. The survey will be posted through January 11, 2009.
The final phase of the project will be conducted by Dr. Cindy Forgie and Dr. Marco Lara Gracia, both assistant professors of engineering. Based on data collected by METS and Morris’s students, they will use a computer simulation to suggest optimum routes.
The METS study is one of three CAR studies designed to evaluate the efficiency of City services. The last formal efficiency study of the METS system was conducted 10 years ago.
Wendy Knipe Bredhold
News & Information Services
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