A more serious and frustrating problem is the separation of portals. Degreeworks is an application completely differentiated from the registration process, meaning you cannot figure out which classes you need to take and register for them at the same time. It is also a clunky format that is not very user-friendly, and you cannot make certain changes without your advisor (it took me three tries and two years to drop my pre-health indicator). Personally, I do not use Degreeworks. I have kept a Word document for the last three years that has the information for every class I need to take until I graduate. It is a lot easier for me to navigate and personalize than Degreeworks — maybe that speaks to my need for organization, but it seems to point towards the inefficiency of Degreeworks instead. My system may be low-tech, but at least it is a more understandable and usable tool for planning ahead.
Another issue that upperclassmen are probably familiar with is the credit limit rule for juniors. Freshman and sophomores: pay attention. This is not particularly publicized by advisors, and if you are planning to optimize your class schedules all the way through graduation, this is something you need to know. Upperclassmen have to apply for special permission to take a fifth class, and are strictly limited to one semester of five classes, unless you have a 3.7 GPA. I understand that Fordham encourages us to have internships and extracurricular activities, but it seems a little unnecessary to enforce that regulation on everyone. Not everyone’s career path requires internships, and some students want to enhance their degree with double majors and minors. The credit limitation is an arbitrary inhibition of those perfectly reasonable goals. Every so often, the registration gods smile upon students and the entire process is smooth sailing, but generally, registration at Fordham is not a pleasant experience. Beside the unavoidable complications — getting locked out of a class that gets full almost instantly, classes that are offered at inconvenient times, classes for your major not being offered at all — it seems that the university could change some aspects of the procedure to make it much easier for students. Let’s hope they make changes for the better with the students in mind.
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