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September 03, 2002 - Image 42

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 2002-09-03

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8C - The Michigan Daily - New Student Edition - Tuesday, September 3, 2002

Finally ... the Rock returned

Get in line: mAccess den~ied

The rock of Michigan can be found on the corner of Hill Street and
Washtenaw Avenue.


By Jeremy Berkowitz
Daily Staff Writer
Continuing problems with the
Wolverine Access online registration
system caused hundreds of seniors to
line up outside the Registrar's Office
Nov. 27 to register for winter semester
classes in person for the first time since
"It's stupid that we are forced to skip
classes to register for classes," graduated
LSA senior Lisa Powell said.
Students complained in 2000-2001
school year that Wolverine Access was
slower than the old telephone registra-
tion system, which was disconnected
two years ago, but in the first days of the
2002 winter class registration, the online
system has prevented thousands of stu-
dents from registering. The system has
been slower than usual and has shut
down on them often.
"I tried for four hours; I only got three
classes registered," said graduated senior
Lori Hoffmann. "I guess I was lucky."
When the problems with the system
that surfaced Nov. 26 persisted the fol-
lowing day, the Registrar's Office began
allowing students to register in person at
the LSA Building and the Media Union
on North Campus. There, students were
signed in and given a number, and many
waited hours for their numbers to be
Out of 6,248 students who were
allowed to register by the first night
night, only 2,945 had their schedules
processed, said Associate University
Registrar Kortney Briske. Even with in-
person registration, fewer students were
able to register Nov. 27 than Nov. 26,
when 1,832 students out of 3,000 sched-
uled appointments were able to access
the system through Wolverine Access.
The error was finally detected and
fixed, and Wolverine Access reopened
just for scheduling. The backpack option
was later added. In order to catch up and
to maintain fairness, the Registrar's
Office postponed all student registration
dates by twoweekdays.
Briske said the technical difficulties
that arose came as a surprise.
"We spent thousands of dollars testing
the system, but sometimes it is difficult
to replicate the loads of registration that
occur," he said.
However, many students who were
forced to wait a long time at the Regis-
trar's Office said the website and the
University were disorganized and unpre-

pared for registration.
"Being a world-renowned university,
they should know the type of technology
it takes to register thousands of students
for classes," Business senior Sara
Kwiecien said.
Prior to Fall 2000, students used a
touch-tone system called CRISP to reg-
ister for classes. Graduated senior Moni-
fa Gray said Wolverine Access, which
was recently revamped to include a
"backpack" pre-registration option, is
disorganized and repeatedly freezes. She
said that with CRISP if students got dis-
connected, they could always call back
and pick up where they left off.
"The disadvantages of Wolverine
Access outweigh its advantages,"
Gray said.
The backpack feature allows students
to search for classes on the system
before their registration dates and to set
up their schedules. After problems began
Nov. 26, the backpack was restricted to
only those whose registration time had
passed. Briske said the problems did not
have to do with the backpack, but rather
an error in the database.
At around 1 p.m. Nov. 27, staff mem-
bers from the Registrar's Office began
sitting down with students and register-
ing them by computer directly into the

registration system. Yet, the system's
speed continued to deteriorate through-
out the afternoon until it was eventually
taking as long as 20 minutes to register a
single class. At around 4 p.m., the Regis-
trar's Office shut down Wolverine
Access to fix the problem and asked all
students who were still waiting to fill out
cards with their requested classes.
Prior to 1994, when touch-tone
CRISP was introduced, the Registrar's
Office set up space in Angell Hall to
accommodate hundreds of students

coming in every day to pick classes - a
stark contrast to the scene of disorgani-
zation at the Registrar's Office yesterday,
when students filled every corner of the
main lobby in the LSA Building.
"We used to be equipped 10 years ago
to handle this, but we are not anymore;'
Briske said. Briske added that despite
the crowds and loud complaints of some
students, "for the most part, students
were supportive, and understood that
this dilemma was harder on us than it
was on them."

With the Wolverine Access online registration system continuing to prevent thousands of students from registering for
classes, hundreds of former seniors line up outside the Registrar's Office in the LSA Building on Nov. 27.

YENA Rt~YU/Daily
Administrative assistant Peggy Staple-Guevara helps former senior Amy Sills register
for classes as graduated seniors David DiCamillo and Leigh Callander look on.
should give students

a clear map of what's available

By Elizabeth Kassab
Daily Staff Editor

The University of Michigan
museum of art

In addition to campus maps that clearly illustrate the
location of the Diag, students should be equipped through-
out their undergraduate career with an equally clear map
of what opportunities the University has to offer, the Pres-
ident's Commission on the Undergraduate Experience
The commission's report found room for improvement
in the University's academic advising and recommended
an overhaul of the system.
"Despite recent, admirable efforts to professionalize
and interlink the advising staff, advising remains underre-
sourced and fragmented at the University," the report
states. Inadequate communication between academic
advisers, peer advisers and resident advisers is one area
the report says can be improved.
"You can always have better advising," committee mem-
ber Stephen Darwall said. "One perception we found from
students who chose not to attend the University was a con-
cern about the level of individual attention."
The commission found that upper-level students often
receive the bare minimum of counseling - just enough
to verify that they have the correct credits needed to

Students receive advising in their concentration field
"from faculty who often opt out of even the most rudi-
mentary counseling role," the commission found. "The
result - through no fault of the advising staff itself -
exemplifies the inhospitality and routinization of public
higher education at its worst."
The committee called for more integrated and coopera-
tive advising from all sectors of the University.
"The University has an amazing collection of intellectu-
al and cultural resources," Darwall said. Students should
be encouraged to take advantage of the wide curriculum,
and museums and culturalevents on campus.
Darwall said he recently attended a concert at Hill
Auditorium where there were few students in attendance.
Darwall said part of the challenge is to make organiza-
tions such as the University Musical Society more accessi-
ble to students, but in addition the University has to "make
students more aware of what's at their doorstep," he said.
Part of this could be done via the Internet, but this does
not rule out individual contact with advisers, the commis-
sion said. "Staff and faculty need to teach students how to
find, organize, and choose among the opportunities that
the University presents - not simply present those oppor-
tunities like some well-organized smorgasbord."

14,000 works of art that span the globe and the centuries.
Provocative special exhibitions, year-round.
Performances, concerts, community days.
Want to get the Muse News?
It's a free monthly email for UM students who care about art.
To sign up, simply email us at umma.info@umich.edu

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