The interactive degree planning site MyEdu will offer daily updates on course availability, user profiles and a mobile app in time for Monday’s registration.
As the University works with the site, more features will be added as a result of the UT System’s $10 million partnership with MyEdu that began on October 18. Frank Lyman, MyEdu senior vice president of marketing and business development, said discussions with the UT campuses influenced the creation of the features.
Course availability will be updated on MyEdu’s website at midnight each evening, which Lyman said will make planning a schedule easier and more reliable. While the system does not update in real time, developers are considering implementing the feature, Lyman said.
He said the creation of academic profiles stemmed from student interest in sharing and knowing more about their academic community.
“[Students] said who I am on Facebook might be different from who I want to be academically,” Lyman said.
This feature contains a question and answer section that Lyman said he hopes faculty will utilize to answer class questions.
Some faculty members are concerned about MyEdu’s comments and ratings section that allows users to evaluate individual instructors. Lyman said this section will remain, along with another feature that is expected to launch at the end of April that will match students’ preferred learning methods to the teaching styles of faculty members.
“How do we provide the same [feature] in a way that’s more fair and objective?” Lyman said.
The MyEdu app is available for any mobile browser, which includes information on courses and campus buildings, Lyman said. He said students can use it for different functions like finding building hours or forming study groups.
Psychology senior Stephanie Holloway said before she used MyEdu she would have to create a spreadsheet to plan her schedule, since she thought UT’s registration system was confusing.
Holloway said the University’s Interactive Degree Audit is better for long-term planning, but she uses MyEdu to manage course loads. However, she said she dislikes how students use some of the site’s other features.
“I’m not the kind of student who looks for the easiest class,” Holloway said. “It seems like it’s being kind of abused. I’m looking for teaching style and effective teaching. I would use it to see a nice visualization of ‘what am I stacking on top of myself this semester?’”
Vice provost and registrar Shelby Stanfield serves as the co-chair of the University’s MyEdu steering team, which includes several students and faculty members. Stanfield said MyEdu’s graduation roadmap is like a sketch pad, whereas the Interactive Degree Audit is like a more detailed planning device. He said the team’s main objective is to explore how the two systems can work together.
“We can say, ‘here’s how you can get maximum benefit,’” Stanfield said. “You can use these in a complementary fashion.”
Version 2.0 of the audit rolled out March 21 with what Stanfield described as a much more enhanced user interface.
“There’s a lot of infrastructure improvements,” Stanfield said. “It sets the stage for future features that we’re going to plug into the degree audit.”
Stanfield said the steering team has met twice, but plans to start meeting bi-weekly to further examine the features that MyEdu can offer the University.
“It’s very much still evolving,” Stanfield said.