MWAIS 2021 Proceedings


Most researches in COVID-19 literature focuses on policy making - from the federal government, the CDC, state, and local governments - and case prediction. In this study, we attempt to use online social media data to better understand the student perspective of their university’s reopening and COVID-19 prevention measures and their impact on pandemic control. We collected policy information and case numbers from multiple authority resources. And, we created a web crawler to scrape Twitter data related to 250 universities including tweets, retweets, replies, and likes. Based on those tweets, we gauge student sentiment toward their university’s policy and communication. Moreover, we apply a quantitative analysis approach to explore the role of university policy, student perceptions, and their interaction on pandemic control. We believe that the expected result of our work can help universities better understand the student experiences and therefore improve their policy, response, and communication strategies to survive this turbulent period.