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Grades go electronic

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Posted: Wednesday, January 20, 2010 9:00 pm

Gonzaga's Registrar's Office is not just turning over a new leaf with an up-to-date electronic database, but is also eliminating paper documents in the process. Within the next year, the office will make schedule and transcript information more accessible to students while being ecologically conscious.

The Registrar's Office, along with the Admissions and Financial Aid, are beginning the process by taking all paper files and inputting the information online.

The goal is to create a database that will "work toward making things better for our student population in terms of efficiency and environmentally friendly, while saving costs for the University", said Shari Ramussen, Associate Registrar.

These three departments are beginning to use this new technology, which will keep expanding until all departments are using the new information system.

The Registrar Office says degree audits contribute to the largest use of paper in the office and within the next year hope to decrease the use through this database to make this information available for students.

By the next academic year, the Registrar office's technological transformation project will be near completion. Other departments such as Plant Services will subsequently begin transferring all paperwork online.

Current student files, along with those from the first years of the University's establishment, are being collected to upload into the database.  Ramussen says this is "a good step for students and the university."

 This task has proven difficult for the Registrar's Office as boxes of student files from Gonzaga's history line the walls.  The goal is to store all of the information in a permanent system which will provide security of student documents.

This large project involves many different people from in and outside the University to get the project accomplished in a short time frame. Along with Gonzaga's information technology department, COMSTOR, a local Spokane document scanning and data archiving company, is helping these offices in going green and providing a more secure database for important information.

"[COMSTOR handles] anything to do with information. We have done some scanning services, where we scan documents and we place it on some kind of media," Tim Florin, information technology employee at COMSTOR said.

The company is also helping convert micrographics and film microfiche to preserve part of Gonzaga's history.

"Saving trees! This is a big part of the business and taking paper documents and scanning them and electronically digitizing it; more and more customers are going that way," Florin said.

Outside the office in College Hall, students can access paperwork needed to sign into classes or change majors. All of these forms are also available on the Registrar's Web site.


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