Registration is always a chaotic time for students. When the LSA Course Guide goes live, students often scramble to make appointments with academic advisers in hopes of creating an ideal schedule. To accommodate students looking for academic advising, the Newnan LSA Academic Advising Center recently updated its website to offer students more resources for managing their course loads. The additions are a good first step — one that other departments should consider reproducing. But simply providing the resources isn’t enough if students aren’t aware of them. Advising offices must publicize changes so that students can fully utilize available resources.
According to a Nov. 28 Daily article, a variety of changes have been made to the online tools available on the Newnan website. Among the changes — which have been in the works for about two years — were updates to the Peer Academic Advising Office website and instructional videos on how to use Wolverine Access and prepare a class schedule. There is also a new Academic Success Strategies website that focuses on organizational and study skills, according to Timothy Dodd, director of the Newnan LSA Academic Advising Center. According to the Daily article, many students who were asked about the changes commented that they weren’t aware of the website.
The online updates from the Newnan Advising Center are a great addition to current academic advising resources. The website allows students to quickly pick and choose what they need to know. Information about distribution requirements, scheduling and everything else that goes into registering for classes is readily available on one website. The resources are easily accessible and enable students to get questions answered without having to make an advising appointment.
Though some students need time to sit down with an adviser, others are only after smaller pieces of information that don’t necessarily require a face-to-face conversation. The extra tools also allow students to get self-help on their own time through the ease of the Internet, without struggling to schedule a visit to Angell Hall. This is particularly useful during registration times, when advising appointments are often tough to come by.
Now that these additions are complete, it’s crucial that the Newnan Advising Center makes sure students are aware of them. Many students only seek advising when they are new to the University or getting ready to graduate. The center should promote online services so that students know how to access and use the resources that are available to them.
The Newnan Advising Center demonstrated an understanding of students’ needs by giving them the option of face-to-face help or online information. But scheduling is stressful for all students — not just those in LSA. If the increased online services prove a hit with students, other advising offices on campus should implement similar systems.
The Newnan Advising Center should continue to expand its online resources to take the pressure off itself and students. If the current changes are successful, other schools and departments at the University should follow in Newnan’s footsteps and update their online resources too.