The April 2 edition of Things to Know discussed Strategic Enrollment Management (SEM), a process that will enable UND to align its mission with its academic, co-curricular, fiscal, and enrollment resources through strategic recruiting and retention efforts.  At this time, our efforts are focused on undergraduate academic excellence and student success.

That same issue of Things to Know also noted that a Strategic Enrollment Management Committee has been formed to identify ways to recruit highly-qualified undergraduate students who are interested in UND and to create a clear path for students to stay and graduate in four years.

This group has been active in making a number of recommendations that have been implemented or are now under consideration. Over the next few weeks, you’ll hear about many of these in forthcoming editions of Things to Know.  Today’s issue addresses some of these initiatives—now under way or soon to be implemented—that focus on course scheduling and the application process.  Here is a description of those initiatives and their current status:

  • Student-centered course scheduling, with already-specified standardized course schedules (M-W-F classes 50 minutes long and begin on the hour; T-TH classes 75 minutes long and begin every 90 minutes).  Status: to be fully implemented by fall 2014.

This scheduling process will aid student success, putting priority on scheduling classes when they best work for students, and enabling students to organize their classes adjacent to each other as often as possible.  Student access to a consistent schedule across the university promotes timely degree completion.  This process also eases the burden on chairs and faculty members to find suitable rooms for their classes.

  • Inclusion of four-year degree plans in the 2014-15 online course Catalog.  Status: completed.

Publication of four-year degree plans allows prospective and current students easy access to UND’s extensive degree-planning resources, improves transparency of degree requirements to students, and promotes student communication with advisors.  These degree plans do not replace advisor discussions; rather, they support them.  By working with advisors to implement these plans, students have the opportunity to take a proactive approach to their education, and in many cases students can graduate in four years, thereby saving time and money.  This process also allows chairs to project coursework for a multi-year period, thereby allowing faculty members to plan for the future.

  • Approval of Essential Studies courses for listing in the new online catalog.  Status: completed.
  • Astra Schedule, a service provided by the University System, will be used to facilitate campus room scheduling.  Status: scheduling system is in place. The SEM committee is exploring the most effective campus orientation for the system.

Use of the online room scheduling system will enable UND to better match classroom configuration, features and size to meet student and faculty needs and ensure a better class experience for students.  Also, by efficiently using classroom space, some rooms will be freed up for other purposes, such as research and creative activity.

All the tools described above—and others to come—are designed to support students’ academic success in their chosen careers. We will share additional progress on these and other Strategic Enrollment Management initiatives in the weeks ahead.