Updated September 16, 2021 at 11:22 PM to include information from the University Registrar and Assistant Vice President Rodney Parks.
In many Elon 101 classes, an entire class is devoted to understanding and creating a color-coded Excel spreadsheet called a “Four Year Plan”. A staple on most Elon University desktops, a four-year plan is modified, moved, and reassessed as students progress through their academic careers. But as spring 2022 approaches for enrollment in fall 2022, students will now be able to connect their quadrennial plan to their degree audit and the course database.
“This will create the opportunity for students to have in-depth discussions about more information than just selecting classes,” said university registrar and assistant vice president Rodney Parks. “Let’s talk about why you take these courses, let’s talk about your career, what you plan to do for your internship. And professors will be able to have more time to devote to better discussions with students. “
What is changing?
The Office of the Registrar has partnered with the Office of University Councils to launch a new technology system to facilitate university planning and registration. The new technology, called Student Planning, replaces what students and faculty currently use for credential verification and enrollment. Student planning will be implemented for winter and spring registrations.
The new system will allow students to build their academic plans in the student system, request a review by their advisers, and view a timeline of their academic record. Parks said he hopes this change will benefit students and counselors, once they learn about the system and become familiar with it.
“You will be able to drag and drop courses, you will be able to see [pre-requisites] and [co-requisites], you will be able to register directly from this system, you will be able to communicate more effectively with the advisors, ”said Parks.
Student Planning will also indicate when a course is offered, for example if it is only available as one section per semester or if it is only offered in the spring. It will also allow students to put placeholders in their four-year plans, indicating when they want to study abroad or get some credit. The system will not indicate where the student will be studying abroad or what specific course they will be taking.
The diploma audit will now be known as ‘my progress’ and will be a more interactive interface, including course requirements leading to the diploma. The update will allow students to find the course they need to graduate in one place. According to Parks, the changes to registration “will improve the registration experience.”
Beginning with enrollment in the winter term, the university will also extend the use of waiting lists to all undergraduate courses except first-year core courses. The waitlist processes will be the same as those already used in the Love School of Business, School of Communications, and higher level core seminars.
Since students are notified by email when their waitlist status changes, it is the student’s responsibility to regularly check their emails to ensure that they do not miss the notification. The current waitlist process also doesn’t show students where they are on the waitlist, which has resulted in frustration, Parks said.
“Having the opportunity to have these discussions with students and waiting lists, it’s been just a long time,” Parks said.
In addition, there is a new course repetition policy. Excluding winter and summer courses, courses repeated in the four semesters of a student’s presence after the first time a student takes the course will count only once in the calculation of the cumulative average. The most recent grade obtained will be taken into account now, rather than previous grades obtained by a student. Repeated failed courses due to an honor code violation, however, will remain on the transcripts.
Launch of new systems
The Student Planner is being tested in the fall by some students, and the system will launch for the entire student body in the spring semester. While seniors will not be affected by the new system, Parks said he believes juniors will have the greatest reaction to the change as they have used the previous system throughout their careers.
“It’s a big cultural change, both for counselors and for students,” Parks said. “Sometimes the change is a little hard, but the students adapt very quickly… I think once they get a chance to see what his true abilities are, they will love him. “