SAU Buzz

Switching to the Portal

by Elli Alvis
Posted on Nov 02, 2017

As of this school year, St Ambrose has switched from the Beeline to the Portal. This shift offers easy access to all areas of student life now in the same location.

“Now that I’m used to the Portal, I like it a lot more than the Beeline,” Junior Kristin Enright said. “It was confusing at first because there’s so many different tabs and a lot more information, but now that I’ve actually had some experience using it, I feel like it’s easy to navigate and find what you’re looking for. It’s a lot more organized.”

Several returning students expressed concern at the beginning of fall semester because of the drastic difference between the Beeline and the Portal. Many felt comfortable using the Beeline, because they had been taught how to do so as incoming freshmen. Now they had to figure out how to find their way around the new Portal on their own. This wasn’t a problem for this year’s incoming class, who went through demonstrations during their summer orientations.

The Portal offers Student Planning, where individuals can access their transcripts, view their progress and plan classes along with much more.

“From an advising standpoint, this new feature is really helpful. It gives students the ability to map out a four-year plan and visualize that,” said Patricia Madden, an Ambrose faculty member.

The Office of the Registrar & Academic Advising offices will be open for extended hours during the week of registration to better assist students with the registration process.

Students are now able to interact more with their class schedule and potential course selections. Program evaluations, which show the progress of the student through a visual representation, now show the student more clearly the courses still required both within their major as well as outside courses, such as elective and general education requirements. These requirements, if clicked, will reroute the user to a page which lists all the available courses that would fulfill the stated requirement.

Besides academic use, the Portal also provides students a personalized daily calendar of events, the ability to record work study hours, more in-depth Residence Life information and access to Blackboard, where students can monitor their grades and class materials.

Registration for the spring semester, which will be the first time that the entire campus uses the new Portal, will take place during the beginning of November, with the first wave of undergraduate students scheduled for 4:30 p.m. on Nov. 8, 2017.