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Justin Quaintance

U of C to soon replace Degree Navigator with new program

By Josh Harkema, October 18 2016 —

The University of Calgary registrar’s office will soon phase out Degree Navigator, replacing it with a software program called Academic Advisement.

Like Degree Navigator, Academic Advisement is a software module that tracks a student’s degree progress.

U of C registrar Angelique Sawezcko said there are many benefits to replacing Degree Navigator. The main advantage of Academic Advisement will be its direct integration with PeopleSoft, the U of C’s online management system. She said the university already licenses Academic Advisement.

“The reason we’re doing this [upgrade] is the risk, the cost savings and [Academic Advisement] has better functionality,” she said. “It can be built right into the student centre. Advisors can support students with their course planning [and] there are better support mechanisms in place.”

According to Sawezcko, the phase-out of Degree Navigator will start with the Faculty of Nursing, as it’s a very structured program. Following that, one yet-to-be-chosen major in both the Faculty of Arts and the Faculty of Science will incorporate the new module.

Sawezcko said Academic Advisement needs to be implemented in stages because of the number of programs available at the university.

“Our plan is to have most of the direct entry programs implemented for late fall of 2017 and all the other programs by the end of 2018,” she said.

Students’ Union vice-president academic Alicia Lunz supports the replacement of Degree Navigator.

“There have been a lot of complaints over the last couple of years from people going by [the information on] Degree Navigator and it not fully updating,” Lunz said. “Then, when they apply to graduate, they can’t because they don’t have all their course requirements completed.”

According to Sawezcko, Degree Navigator is no longer supported, so it’s at risk of not working in the future. She also said Academic Advisement should work better for students doing double degrees.

“Right now double degrees are not supported in Degree Navigator. With Academic Advisement students can actually look at those joint programs together,” she said.

The U of C has used Degree Navigator for 10 years. Though there are six versions of the software, the university currently uses the fourth.

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