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Shortened registration period overloads server, causes frustration among students

Last Monday, Tech’s website was overloaded due to 8,000 students scheduled to register for classes on the same day.

“We were intentional in trying to allow more students to register earlier in the week,” Robert Hodum, Enrollment Management associate vice president, said. “Over time, we’ve added more appointments every 15 minutes. At this point, we realized we went too far.”

Hodem said it’s not unusual for 75 to 100 students to be scheduled every 15 minutes for registration. Enrollment Management increased that amount to 150 students.

However, it was unintentional that 8,000 students were eligible to register in the same day, according to Hodum. Enrollment Management has widened the registration period: instead of two days, the next should span from Monday to Thursday.

“While some students may register later through the week, the system will be more able to keep up with distribution times,” he said.

Some students were affected by Monday’s registration delays.

Mary Elliott, Tech student, said the website made her restart the registration process over again while she was trying to register for classes.

“I’m going to have to get a permit for a class,” Elliott said. “Within an hour, the class was open, but I had to wait around. By the time the errors were solved, the class was full.”

Another student, Elizabeth Khamphengphet, said the internet speed prevented her from registering for needed classes.

“I had to wait around for the internet to speed up while the classes were pending, then the classes were closed,” Khamphengphet said.

Tech student Joshua Clapp said he experienced technical difficulties while trying to register for classes.

He said the classes were already filled up by the time he was able to register.

“I think the problem might have been where so many students were trying to access the website all at once, and it slowed down the server,” Clapp said.

Kay Hume, Information Technology Services interim manager, said, “The reason for appointment times is so that everybody gets the opportunity to get the courses they need, by total hours earned.”

Graduating seniors and first-time freshman get first registration times.

“We’re educating our functional departments about the impact of registration on system resources,” Hume said.

Hume said ITS is asking everyone to play a part in allowing registration activities to take priority during registration week.

“There’s a lot going on behind the scenes to make registration work,” Hume said. “We’re continually doing things as far as making sure things work better and faster for the students.”

The web server that runs course registration will be upgraded in July. The memory is to be increased by 400 percent.

“That will be a great improvement and will help us maintain a more powerful system,” Hume said.