Permission numbers posing the biggest problem for UConn course selection

UConn’s course registration is in full force, and this year getting permission numbers to enroll in specialized classes has become the biggest issue.

Kevin McLaughlin, 8th semester civil engineering student, said that he had a very difficult getting the permission number that he needed.

McLaughlin said that the registrar had capped the course too low, so the professor had predicted that there would be issues.

“This was a problem for many students, so he knew that he would have to give out a lot of permission numbers,” McLaughlin said.

Rachel Devylder, 4th semester human development and family studies student, said that she was frustrated with the amount of work that goes into getting permission numbers.

Devylder said she needed permission numbers for all of her classes, and did not know that she was required to fill out a plan of study until an hour before her pick time.

Devylder believes that these caveats should be made clear to students well before the time of their class registration.

“They should make it clear to students if they have a hold and will not be able to get into their classes,” Devylder said.

According to Associate Registrar, Erin Mason, the Registrar is aware of these complaints but is unable to take care of them directly. It is the individual departments and professors who grant those requests.

“Permission numbers are tricky. We don’t handle them, and some students think that we do,” Mason said. “We advise students but if they’d go directly to their department, it could be easier for them.”

Mason said that there is a pattern of which classes fill up first.

“I think that the classes that most majors need fill up quickly, and Tuesday/Thursday classes,” Mason said.

She said that she understands class registration can be frustrating for students, and the Registrar is doing what it can to make the process easier.

The Registrar’s office is increasing resources and implementing changes that they hope will make the process as easy as possible.

One relatively recent addition to Student Admin is the College Scheduler, or the Schedule Builder.

According to Mason, the Registrar worked with University Information Technology Services to put the system in order to make registration easier for students.

“That’s one thing I wished more students new about,” Mason said.

The Registrar also works with the I-center in Wilbur Cross, which recently began helping students with their registration process. Students can now go there to get help with picking classes and dealing with holds, Mason said.

More changes, Mason said, are on the way. The Registrar is going to be updating the Schedule Builder program in order to make it more mobile and easier for advisors to work with.

Mason said that PeopleSoft is going to be upgraded in about two years in order to be modernized and more mobile friendly.

All of these changes are sure to improve the student experience. However, class selection is always going to put a lot of pressure on students.

“It’s always a stressful process, and there’s probably some little issues that can be fixed, but it’s the system itself,” McLaughlin said. “To change the entire system wouldn’t make sense.”

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