Jan 172012
 
Authors: Emily Smith

Are you on track to graduate?

Unlike what some people may think, this question isn’t too difficult to answer. With several resources available through CSU, students can keep tabs on their credits without even leaving home.

“At CSU, each major designs its individual program of study through check-sheets that help guide students through their graduation requirements,” said Kendra Allen, the coordinator of advising for the Department of Design and Merchandising.

“The check-sheet is there as a tool, but is most valuable when undergraduates use them with their Degree Audit Report (DARS),” Allen said.

The DARS can be accessed under the Records section of RamWeb by clicking the following link: My Undergraduate Degree Plan (DARS).

“On the DARS, students can view their credit breakdown, including total number of credits, grade point average, AUCC course requirements and courses that count directly toward their major and/or minor,” she added.

The DARS provides visual resources, including a pie chart of completed, in-progress and unfulfilled credits. It also breaks down program credits, AUCC credits, major requirements, college requirements and additional majors in a bar graph.

“The accessibility of the Degree Audit Report during advising sessions truly leaves out the guess work for advisers and students,” Allen said.

Associate Registrar for Degree and Transfer Evaluation Kelly Brundage explained that the DARS is an “electronic version of a student’s program of study.”

“It is the primary system that all students should be using,” Brundage said.

Even with its accessibility, some students, like sophomore mechanical engineering major Sean Supple, are unaware of the DARS.

“I’ve never used the DARS before,” Supple said, adding that he doesn’t know how to check his credits.

“I know I’m on track to graduate in five years from engineering because my advisor made me a five-year plan that I follow,” he said.

Academic advisors assist students who are trying to make sure they have the correct amount of credits, as well as help them in further areas of their college experience.

“Advisors at CSU are extremely dedicated to helping students find their place not only at CSU, but also in their career exploration,” Allen said.

“Using the DARS, advisors can help students to understand how their classes can be used to build foundations towards their personal and professional goals, whether that be adding a second major or minor, mapping out future semesters or planning for a semester abroad,” she said.

Unofficial transcripts can also be accessed for free on RamWeb any time, providing another way for students to check on their credit totals.

Collegian writer Emily Smith can be reached at news@collegian.com.

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