Populi

Coming soon: improvements to course registration

Course registration is about to get a big upgrade. Here's a look at what's coming...

But first, let’s have a quick look at the current registration screen and some of the problems we wanted to solve.

It shows a dense list of available courses together with some salient details: schedule, faculty, number of openings, and so forth. Courses available for enrollment are intermixed with those for auditing; courses for which students cannot register are just as prominent as the ones for which they can. Finally, there’s no way to get on a course waitlist, nor is there any way to indicate courses the student would like to drop in case a spot opens up.

The new features improve the registration process on all these points.

There are two sections: Offered Courses and Selected Courses. Offered defaults to show only Available courses without conflicts—that is, courses in which the student may enroll. It excludes courses from other programs, those with conflicts (schedule, prerequisites, term enrollment limits), and those not offered on the student’s campuses. Students can also look at Available courses (which may have conflicts) and All courses (which may include courses in which they cannot enroll).

Each course offering has more information—whether the student has already passed it, how many openings (enrolled and auditing), and what conflicts exist.

The screen lets registrants toggle between courses for enrollment and auditing.

To register, the student clicks the green plus sign. This creates an enrollment request that, when confirmed, appears under Selected Courses. As Selected fills up, Offered instantly updates to show what’s still available that works with the student’s schedule and other constraints. Once the student has selected all the courses she’s after, she’ll Save to submit the requests.

Finally, the new “Waitlist Over-enrollment” feature will take a huge load off your waitlist workload. Once enabled in Academics > Settings, students can click the clock to request the next spot on that course’s waiting list. When she saves, Populi will check to see whether the waitlisted course conflicts with a term enrollment limit or the student’s schedule. If that’s the case, she’ll be able to choose which courses she’s willing to drop if a spot opens up. Should that happen, Populi will automatically drop as many of the chosen courses as necessary to move her off the waitlist and onto the rolls.

Lord willing and the creeks don’t rise, we’re planning to have the new registration features out to all our customers the third week of October.

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