WVU will introduce several changes to scheduling rules for the upcoming semester, including grid course scheduling waitlist capabilities.
“They were initiated by a consulting company that found one of WVU’s undergraduate students’ biggest frustrations was the ability to schedule their classes easily,” said Louis Slimak, assistant provost for curriculum and assessment.
Slimak said one of the biggest changes is enforcing a grid system. This new system would establish specific times when courses can be held to prevent courses from overlapping.
Most courses will follow the grid, meaning they will all have to start and end at the same time in each block, though there will be a few rare exceptions
Slimak said another big issue the University was having mainly impacted STEM students. He said because all STEM majors require many of the same prerequisites, these courses are in high demand, and it is challenging to fit all of the courses into students’ schedules.
Because many of the individual departments for each major were not communicating, it was difficult for students to fit core classes with their major-specific classes.
Slimak said to combat this, WVU will begin releasing the STEM course schedule three months before other course departments. He said this would give professors time to schedule around core classes, so an ideal STEM course schedule could be laid out.
“I think it is going to make a huge difference, given how much work we have already done on it,” Slimak said.
In the past, students could sign up for multiple blocks of the same course in order to test which professor and time slot they preferred. Slimak said this created implications for other students, since one student would block out multiple spots.
This will no longer be possible, as the system can now block students from registering for the same class multiple times.
Another minor change includes implementing a waitlist system into scheduling. Prior to this, if a course was full, students would have to check in periodically to see if any space opened up. This change will allow students to be waitlisted and notified when a spot becomes available.