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It's Registration Time!
  • Shin Dong-kyu, Son Jin-lee
  • 승인 2004.06.09 13:44
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"Oh, my gosh!! What time is it, Mom?"
"Just 7 o'clock. It's enough time to get to school."
"Why didn't you wake me up? I'm late for school!!"
 Today is REGISTRATION day.
 The invisible war among Donggukians is here again. It's time to apply for lectures.
Like most students I rush to school as fast as I can.
 On my way school, most of the students rush as fast as they can. But when I arrived at Dongguk University (DU)'s Business Solution Center, all seats are already occupied. What should I do? .................Ed.

Part 1. Importance of Registration
 "I want to buy a University Korean Language class lecture seat. Please bargain with me! Call me, please!"
  This is just one passage from SNULIFE, the On-line notice board for Seoul National University students. Applying for lectures is becoming a keen competition due to hardship of employment, grade competition and so on. It is similar to adults competing for apartments.

Part 2. Retracing Past Registrations Systems
In the '70s, DU students filled out the registration form very carefully. Students filled out three application forms: one for themselves, another for a grade sheet, and the third for the school authorities. And two or three lecture timetables were posted here and there around the school. If someone scribbled on the timetable, other students couldn't read it. Also, school staffers had many difficulties in writing down a student's units and records one by one.
 "At that time, I paid careful attention when filling out  the registration forms because my grade sheet would be return to my parents and would be part of my permanent record," said Choi Chang-hee who entered DU in 1978.
  Then the Optical Mark Reader (OMR) sheet marking system was introduced to DU in the '80s. Until that time, there were few problems such as student overflow in one class due to the atmosphere with in major-centered class taking and nonexistence of plural majors. But it was inconvenient to use the OMR cards and to collect the statistical data.

Part. 3
Current Registration and Related Interviewees' Thoughts
DU introduced a computer management system in 1996. As a result of the computer system, registration form's accuracy and rapidity has improved.  During 40 years, there was a big increase in the number of students, professors and lectures. DU has 1,820 lectures in this semester.
As the scale of lectures goes up, many problems are arising. Several popular lectures don't accept all the students who are eager to take the lectures. This makes students angry. The School Authority also recognizes these problems, but they said lecture capacity restriction is inevitable due to lack of space and the need of qualitative lectures. But it is a kind of apology. For setting up qualitative lectures, the school authority should match state-of-the-art classrooms and competent professors.

Interview with Four Students
Their random thoughts on registration
Questions to all students
*(1) What's the top priority when you fill out the lecture application?
*(2) DU's registration system: Good or Bad?
*(3) Some Memorable Episodes.

◆Kim Min-jeong (Senoir, Dept. of English Lang. & Lit.)
(1) Frankly, I choose a class in which I would get a good grade.
(2) Bad! As far as I'm concerned, we don't have high-level lectures compare to other schools.
(3) I don't have any special memory.

◆Kim Kyung-min (Sophomore, Dept. of Information Systems)
(1) After hearing seniors' opinions, I take classes with good reputations. Good reputation means the professor is generous when giving grades.
(2) It is okay. But there is a little confusion with the lecture change period.
(3) Episode? When the big confusion in early 2003 happened, only my information was okay.
◆ Lee Hyung-seok (Junior, Computer Engineering Major)
(1) In my first two years, I took classes that interested me. In my junior year, however, I took classes with senior's advice.
(2)No objection. It's good.
(3) When I was a freshman, I went to the school's computer center after bar hopping with friends. We slept in front of the computer center. Remembering that, makes me yearn for those days.

◆ Choi Bo-ram (Sophomore, Dept. of Chinese Lang. & Lit.)
(1) I focus on my favorite professors and arranged my timetable for a four-day week.
(2) As long as we don't have another problem like 2003, it is good enough.
(3) There is no episode but I do have an opinion. In registration book, we can't always confirm some professors names. It is a big problem.  And sometimes, different professors lecture us regardless of the applicants' book. The school should change this.

<Special Interview>
An interview with Moon Sang-gook, the officer in charge of registration affairs at Information Service & Education.  We asked him several questions related to registration.
Q. As you know, we experienced a huge problem at the beginning of 2003. Due to computer mistakes, all of the freshmen registration information was zero-based. We would like to hear what happened at that time and the existing system's situation.
A. We use a system called Sybase Engine. It was created by Daewoo Information and now we have developed it and maintain it. There aren't any problems in the system. The problem, however, was our own fault. We'll do our utmost not to let it happen again. 
Q. Well...... In my opinion, the confusion will happen again without radical change. What's your opinion? And are you getting support from the school?
A new method is under consideration. The web registration method may be introduced next year.
When the new method is introduced, both users (students) and school officers will become more comfortable. The school is supportive. The question is our efforts.  

Concluding Remark
Generally, students think DU's registration system is okay. But they were unsatisfied with problems like lack of computer transaction capacity. Registration, moreover, can be a barometer that estimates the school's competitive power such as lecture's quality and educational environment. The top priority is to build an extension to a classroom. Lack of space gradually is weakening DU's competitive power.       
The school should recognize the seriousness of the space problem through Pil Dong Hospital space, the third Ilsan branch campus space, and former central library space.
We hope future registration will be easy due to a variety of well-prepared classes.

Shin Dong-kyu, Son Jin-lee  korea232@dongguk.edu

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