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Tuesday, June 30, 2015

FERPA: If a student's parents are divorced can both of them have access to student information?

FERPA treats custodial and non-custodial parents the same. If the custodial parent is granted access to non-directory information about a student, the non-custodial parent can also be granted access to that information.

Monday, June 29, 2015

SELF Loan limit increasing

The annual SELF Loan limits will increase on July 1, 2015; students will now be able to borrow up to $20,000 for Undergraduate and Graduate Programs. Online applications started July 1 or later will be eligible for the higher loan limits. Students that applied for a SELF loan prior to July 1, 2015 may submit a second application for an additional amount.

Students will receive electronic Financial Aid Award Notices (eFAAN) soon

Office of Student Finance staff are currently working on putting together financial aid award packages for students. Medical students should receive their eFAAN sometime during the first week in July. Award packages will be sent to other students in mid to late July.

New online scholarship application available system-wide

Approximately 1,500 students have used the new online scholarship application to apply for scholarships. Students no longer need to apply separately for different departmental scholarships as long as the departments offering the scholarships utilize the online scholarship application. The new scholarship application makes things more efficient and consistent for students, administrators, committee members, and others needing to provide or access scholarship information. For more information on the online scholarship application, please contact the scholarship unit at saosf@umn.edu.

Issue with ECAS course description character limit

Some users are finding that when entering course information into ECAS, the description box states a maximum character limit of 4,000, when in fact, it is only allowing 1,100 characters. Technicians are working on fixing this issue, but in the meantime, please limit your course descriptions to 1,100 characters.

Issue with waitlist function affecting registration

There is an unexpected issue with the waitlist function that is affecting fall registration for approximately 200 classes across all campuses. A workaround has been created that departments can implement if a waitlist has been started but open seats are available for a class. Read more >>

Regents approve tuition increases for next fall

The Board of Regents approved a budget that includes tuition increases of between 1.5 percent and 7 percent. Out-of-state undergraduates will experience a 7 percent increase (around $1,350 yearly) while state resident undergraduates will see an increase of 1.5 percent (around $180 yearly). Resident graduate and professional students will see an increase of 2.5 percent to 3.5 percent. This is the first tuition increase in three years.

Impact of summer courses on Academic Standing

The Office of the Registrar and One Stop Student Services teams have been working with colleges and advisers to increase student awareness about changes to the University's Academic Standing (probation and suspension processes). Typically, colleges will review student records when final grades are submitted at the end of each term to determine whether or not an individual is eligible for addition to or removal from probation or suspension. Starting with the summer 2015, a student's academic performance during summer courses can impact their Academic Standing, and in turn affect their Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) and financial aid eligibility. If a student is on probation and their summer grades result in them being placed on suspension, they risk losing access to fall 2015 courses even if they are already registered. Find out more about the Academic Standing process >>

2015 Staff Resource Guide: New Graduate & Professional International Student

There have been several major changes in the process and support for new international students.
Information in the guide includes:

  • International Student Pre-Arrival and Arrival Information
  • New International Student Registration
  • Course Registration Guidelines: First Semester International Students
  • Minnesota English Language Program Credit Courses
  • English Language Requirements and Support
  • Students with Personal Difficulties and Mental Health Issues
  • Articles and Resources 
  • Contact Information

The entire guide can be found here.

Appropriate Use agreement required July 1

Wednesday, July 1, all employees will be presented with the University’s Appropriate Use agreement for data reporting when logging into MyU. This is a replacement of the prior annual UM Reports agreement. Employees must acknowledge and agree to the Appropriate Use agreement to have access to the MyU portal.

Reverse Transfer available July 1

The National Student Clearinghouse’s Reverse Transfer service is the first national automated solution for exchanging reverse transfer student data. Through reverse transfer as many as two million eligible students could be awarded associate degrees. The new course credit exchange “highway” will facilitate the awarding of reverse transfer degrees by allowing institutions to exchange data in the same way with all of their partner degree granting institutions via the Clearinghouse. It doesn’t matter if the student transferred to another associate degree granting or bachelor’s level institution first, attending public or private institutions, or transferred across state lines. If eligible, the student is awarded an associate degree. The Reverse Transfer service is free to institutions and students. To learn more, visit the Reverse Transfer website via the National Student Clearinghouse.

Monday, June 15, 2015

Issue with waitlist function affecting registration (minor impact)

There is an unexpected issue with the waitlist function that is affecting fall registration for approximately 200 classes across all campuses:

  • For open classes with open seats and a waitlist capacity greater than zero:
    • If a student clicks the “Wait list if class is full” box when registering for the class, the student will be added to a waitlist instead of being enrolled in the class.
    • Once the waitlist is established, all students attempting to register for that class will be offered a spot on the waitlist instead of being enrolled in the class.
    • In most cases, this issue is resolved by the auto-enroll process that runs each evening. The auto-enroll process assigns students on the waitlist to open seats in class.
    • However, if students are not auto-enrolled due to a time conflict or some other issue, they will remain on the waitlist. Additional students attempting to enroll in that class will continue to be offered spots on the waitlist instead of being enrolled.
  • For open classes with open seats and a waitlist capacity of zero:
    • If a student clicks the “Wait list if class is full” box when registering for the class, the student will be told that the class is closed and will not be enrolled.  
    • In those cases, students should delete the class from their shopping cart, uncheck the ‘Wait list if class is full’ box and attempt to enroll again. They will be enrolled if there are still open seats.

Colleges and departments may use the course enrollment status report to find out if students are being prevented from enrolling in open seats due to a waitlist. There is a workaround for classes affected by this issue. To implement the workaround, departments should:

  • Lower the enrollment capacity for the class by the number of students on the waitlist. Note the names and student IDs of the students on the waitlist so they can be manually enrolled later on.
  • Uncheck the “Auto enroll from wait list” box.

This will allow students to continue to enroll in the class despite there being a waitlist. Once the workaround is in place, departments will need to monitor the affected class. If the class fills up and students begin to add themselves to the waitlist again, the “Auto enroll from wait list” box should be re-checked so students can be assigned to seats if any students drop the class.

If you have questions about whether your classes are affected or need assistance implementing the workaround, please contact srhelp@umn.edu. Staff are working with central OIT on finding a solution to this issue.