Author: Lucy Feickert
The registration process ran more smoothly than in years past again last week as college officials continue to tinker with their new strategy of splitting up registration times to take pressure of college servers.. Online servers that provide the platform for students to register electronically did not crash as they have in years past, but did slow down with heavy traffic. In previous years, Course Counts and the registration website have crashed with heavy student use. The slowing of the site still did affect some students, while for others registration passed without incident.
College Registrar and Director of Advising Victor Egitto, who monitored the site traffic with Information and Technology Services (ITS) during each registration time, said the system slowed down some with the influx of students at the beginning of each registration time.
“The first five minutes of each group getting on has about 80 percent of those students who should be getting on getting on, so the system is just inundated with students. After five or ten minutes of each time, it starts to mellow out and everything is fine,” Egitto said.
Undeclared Greg Toth (first-year) agreed that there were problems with getting access to the registration system.
“My roommate was having some issues with getting into the system, and it wasn’t loading up for him, but for me it was fine,” Toth said.
Undeclared Wooyoung Lim (first-year) experienced trouble getting online and then finding open classes.
“I remember being just frustrated because I couldn’t get on for a good fifteen minutes, and even my backups were filled up. I was super concerned, and I kept refreshing the page and logging out, and it was a crazy process,” Lim said.
This year, registration occurred in two stages. In the first stage, students could register for up to 10 units. This phase took place for all students on Nov. 5 and Nov. 6. The second wave of registration Nov. 7 and Nov. 8 allowed students to register for up to eight more units. Each stage happened on a separate day, with half of each class registering at a time. This allowed all students a greater chance to get into at least some of their first choice courses, according to Egitto. Sophomores registered first, then seniors, juniors, and first years.
“I think the two day registration is working really well, most students like that process, and we implemented that a couple semesters ago. More students get at least one of their top choice courses the first go round,” Egitto said.
Seniors do not have absolute seniority in registration, but according to Urban and Environment Policy major Clarissa Boyajian (senior), that is not usually a problem.
“Generally when you’re a senior if you really need to get into a class, you can talk to the professor and get into it because you don’t have any other chance to take it, so I think that makes some sense,” Boyajian said.
Dividing the classes into two groups registering at separate times each day allowed the online server to handle the load of students online. At any point, there were up to 250 students online. Egitto’s goal for the future of registration is to have a server with the ability to facilitate all of each class at once.
“I’d like to get to some point down the road where we can put the entire class on at one time, rather than even separating it into two groups,” he said.
Whenever there are problems with the servers during registration, ITS and the Registrar’s office work to eliminate them. This policy has limited the likelihood of any major issues that might affect registration in recent semesters. One of the primary changes to registration occurred when ITS moved Course Counts and the registration website to their own servers, which allow them to handle heavier student traffic.
“Over the last couple registrations, we’ve figured out what the issue is. ITS has moved the registration system to its own server and no one else competes with that. And Course Counts now has its own server, which is highly used, so they’re the two main functions of registration and they have their own servers, so that helped a lot. I think the major problems have been resolved, now it’s just getting down to these little slow up pieces,” Egitto said.
Boyajian agreed with this fundamental problem within the registration system.
“I know a lot of people who experienced when the Internet froze up. And there was a while where I was trying to work at Course Counts and it didn’t work, so I think those technical things are probably the most important things to fix, because it’s really frustrating trying to register and having it just not work,” Boyajian said.
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