Running Through the Mishmash
With the introduction of the Student Lifecycle Management and Information System (SLMIS) a few years ago, enrolling became much easier and faster with the students enrolling in the courses themselves online. However, it takes at least four steps to complete the enrollment process. One of which is the submitting of documents that must be passed and/or approved by offices. There are students who claim that the process is tedious—more so for the students of populous colleges/programs, whose enrollment could take longer, especially during the late enrollment week. For the students who went through the long process, they wonder if there are ways to better the enrollment process?
Enrollment: an overview
The enrollment process starts with settling a down payment at the Finance Office. Next is meeting with the students’ coordinator/evaluator to get a study load, submitting the study load to the registrar, and finally, enrolling in the courses in SLMIS. For late enrollees, students will have to go back to their respective departments instead, as a final step, since the office of the Registrar locks down self-service enrollment.
Prior to the enrollment, the Registrar will create google sheets with classrooms and time slots. The sheets will be sent to the colleges to be paired with classes. After the deadline, the Registrar will lock down the sheets and input them into SLMIS.
Meanwhile, to open a course, the students must ask the department chairperson to open a class for them provided that they have enough numbers for the course. The department chairperson would then send the request to the college dean, who will then send the request to the Vice President for Higher Education (VPHED), and to the Registrar for the final input.
Going through process
Among the students who felt the long process is JB*. JB disclosed that there were times when the evaluator for their program arrived late, and/or the cut off time is earlier than it’s supposed to be. “Usahay late ang evaluator, usahay sayo ma-cut off,” JB complained. “Luoy [ang] estudyante [nga] mahutdan og subject,” he added.
JB shared that there was one time when he was not accommodated due to the cut-off time. After a long queue for evaluation, JB said he was sent by the evaluator to the (Arts and Sciences) College Dean to have a document signed. He was told by the evaluator that he will no longer need to queue back after he’s done at the Dean’s office to avoid the long wait. However, he complained that the front desk assistant made him queue back in line again. He had to come back the next day.
For XU Registrar Verna Lago, regular students don’t suffer such hindrances in enrollment. The process is usually more problematic for irregular students, and those who were unable to complete their class requirements or Incompletes (INCs) since students will not be able to enroll as long as they have INCs, especially with Engineering students.
Moreover, Lago expressed that the long process is necessary because the VPHED has to be very careful in arranging and approving classes to avoid overloaded and/or underloaded classes. There are classes that have too few or too many students, which could be merged or split. The VPHED also has to audit all classes and avoid giving reading courses to non-graduating students, as reading courses must be a last resort for the students. In addition, Lago opined that the mess starts after locking down the Google Sheets. “Kani siya nga kuti, [this] happened for courses which were not included in the Google Sheet.” After the lockdown, everything is supposed to be settled, but departments and colleges have to accommodate their students who weren’t able to enroll in the courses entered in the Google Sheet.
Lago also stressed that her job is to arrange time slots, classrooms, and class sizes (upon the request from the departments or college deans). All processes regarding the courses are under the departments, colleges, and the VPHED.
It’s not surprising that there are delays and hindrances during the enrollment period given the thousands of students in XU. Some students will be able to complete their enrollments without problems, but there are some who will have to wait for the next semester or school year to take the course they need. All the students ask is if the process can still be improved—and if it can be, how and when?C