Survey: Quarter of international students unfamiliar with corona app

UKrant survey:

Quarter of international students unfamiliar with corona app

An UKrant survey shows that many UG students have downloaded the government app CoronaMelder on their phones. But more than a quarter of internationals don’t even know it exists.
By Sara Rommes
13 October om 16:52 uur.
Laatst gewijzigd op 15 October 2020
om 17:04 uur.
October 13 at 16:52 PM.
Last modified on October 15, 2020
at 17:04 PM.

Of the 166 students who filled out the survey, 44 percent had downloaded the app. There is however a notable difference between the 117 Dutch respondents and the 49 internationals: 47 percent of the first group had the app on their phone, while in the second group, it was only 22 percent. 

That’s not surprising: 27 percent of the international respondents didn’t even know the app exists. ‘But it sounds like a good idea’, one of them said. Another interesting detail: none of the Dutch students said they were unfamiliar with the app. 

Mark Dijkhuis, spokesperson for the Groningen Safety Region, acknowledges the survey results are significant. The GGD, UG, and Hanze University of Applied Sciences are working together to ensure that all students know about the app, he says. They’re also in talks with ESN, the largest international student association in Groningen. ‘They are often much more successful at reaching internationals than campaigns by the Dutch government are.’

Privacy

Most students who have yet to install the app say it’s because they haven’t got around to doing it yet. The app has only been available throughout the country for a few days. Many respondents are also worried about their privacy. ‘I’m worried the app will keep track of where I am at all times’, said one of them. 

Asked whether students think everyone should download the app, their answers varied. Most of them said yes, as they believe the app will contribute to the fight against corona. But they disagree with the idea that the government should make downloading the app obligatory. ‘People should be free to choose whether or not they want to do that.’

ESN’s president David Kraandijk says they will distribute the information through ESN newsletter, website and social media. ‘We are in favour of the CoronaMelder app and happy to work with the GGD to contain the virus.’

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