AlamoScheduler to assist students in registration.
By Rachel Cooper
About 1,000 students at this college have used a PIN to register for classes as of Tuesday, and a new program in ACES can help students create a class schedule that works best for them.
AlamoScheduler became available for students last week in ACES.
The program allows a student to create and save up to four different scenario schedules.
Students can build in a block of time for a lunch break, study or work.
The program also lists prerequisites necessary for a course.
Students can access AlamoScheduler by clicking on the student tab in ACES.
Once a student has a schedule they are happy with, they will click “send to shopping cart.”
The system will then bring up the registration page and carry over the CRNS where students can click to register.
“A lot of students aren’t aware of it yet,” advising team leader Cassandra Segura said of AlamoScheduler.
Registration opened the week of Nov. 14, and the advising centers had more students than usual, Segura said. That was because of the new policy that requires students with 15 or 45 hours to obtain a PIN from their adviser before registering.
“It was effective except that we just need to get the students and us to make sure we know that you need a PIN,” she said.
Segura said Tuesday about 1,000 students had registered with PINs.
The PIN requirement worked well because students received their PINs, got some advising and some even changed their major.
Some students went to advising seeking a PIN a few days or weeks in advance, she said.
“It’s a time-ticketing so some were coming on the 14th because they weren’t able to register until the 16th and they wanted the PIN ahead of time,” Segura said.
Students are still going to advising to receive their PINs.
The PIN requirement also applies to students who will end this semester with 15 or 45 hours after completing their current classes.
For example, there were students on the PIN report who had six earned hours and were getting a 15-hour pin, said Richard Farias, interim dean of student success.
The reason for that is they are currently in three classes worth a total of nine credit hours.
“The algorithm assumes they are going to successfully complete the classes this semester,” Farias said.
Some students might have fallen through the cracks if their advisers did not tell them they needed PINs, Farias said.
Lisa Alcorta, vice president for student success, said a new system has its flaws.
“We might have some problems with the system — it’s just starting; we can’t have everything 100 percent perfect in all cases,” Alcorta said.
The PIN meeting with an adviser should be like having a meeting over coffee and having a conversation about a student’s degree choices, Alcorta said.
“What we’ve found is some students have not met with an adviser in over a year,” Segura said.
Sometimes students self-advise and advisers want to make sure they are on the right track, she said.
Students with 30 or more hours will also need a PIN if they sign up for summer courses.
“It should be a very similar process,” Segura said.