Insights - Self service cuts planning time
Keene State College

Cut course-planning time for students, redefine advisor role. 

Challenge

Give students better visibility into degree planning and enable advisors to engage more deeply 

Results
  • Simplified degree and course planning 
  • Improved communication with advisors 
  • Integrated progress reports and registration process

Keene State College streamlines its registration system to make course planning easier for students.

In her first two years as a student at Keene State College, Samantha Pineau recalls spending a few frustrating hours each semester figuring out what courses to take for her double major in journalism and communications. The limited functionality of the aging registration system required too much clicking and searching for available courses. 

“I’d have to write down a table after the program presented a bunch of line-by-line options,” she says. “I had to look up the same information more than once.” 

Keene State College wanted to give students self-service tools as well as make its advising program more meaningful.  

“We wanted to create opportunities to mentor students, talk about their transition to graduate school or careers, and discover ways that we could tailor a program that moves them in that direction,” explains Tom Richard, registrar at Keene State. 

By Pineau’s third year, the college started using a new registration tool, Ellucian Colleague® Student Planning. 

The new tool visually simplifies and organizes the enormous amount of information within course catalogs and uses a time-block feature that gives students a snapshot of courses and a process for managing their academic journey. 

Students use the tool to plan multiple schedules, design what-if scenarios, see if courses overlap, get warning messages about prerequisite requirements, and check progress toward their degree.

“You can see students’ enthusiasm as their eyes light up when they use it because it’s visually so easy to understand,” says Phoebe Price, academic and career advisor. 

It’s essential to have a degree audit program like this. There’s just too much room for error without it.

Phoebe Price, Academic and Career Advisor, Keene State College

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