Degree Works FAQs

 
▼   Overview
What is Degree Works?
Degree Works is a computerized degree audit program and academic advising tool designed to assist students and advisors in reviewing students’ degree progress. Degree Works is a Web-based program accessible through PAWS.
When will Degree Works be available to the campus?
Degree Works is available to all faculty and students with a catalog term of 201310 (2012-2013) forward. Students with catalog terms prior to 201310 will continue to run degree audits using CAPP.
How often is the data extracted from Banner into Degree Works?
Degree Works data is refreshed nightly from the Banner Student Information System. Any modifications made to student data in Banner (i.e. registration, change of major, change of grades, etc.) will be reflected in Degree Works within 24-48 hours.
▼   Understand Degree Audits

How is the Degree Works Audit organized?
The audit appears in categorical sections:

  • Student biographical information: Information about the student that is independent of degree choice. You may use this information to determine obstacles to registration, eligibility for certain sections, and possibility of academic standing difficulties.
  • Other Information: Degree selection and program of study are entered to identify which degree requirements the student should follow.
  • Summary List of Degree Requirements: All of the requirements are listed in a single section at the beginning of the audit. The boxes next to each requirement are checked off as requirements are fulfilled.
  • General Education Requirements: These degree requirements are organized in the following groups: AREA I. Written Composition; AREA II. Literature, Humanities, and Fine Arts; AREA III. Natural Sciences and Mathematics; and AREA IV. History, Behavioral, & Social Sciences. The blue bar displays your catalog year which determines the general education requirements the student must follow.
  • Major, Minor and Concentrations: Each major, minor, and concentration will be displayed in a block indicating the program requirements, the courses that may be used to fulfill them, and/or the courses the student has already taken to complete the requirements. The blue bar which displays the major, minor, or concentration, also includes the student’s catalog year (this determines the degree requirements to be followed in order to graduate), the GPA for the major, as well as the credits already applied.
  • Other Requirements: Additional degree requirements may be listed after the student’s major, minor, and/or concentration. For undergraduate students, this will include the upper division in residence and writing requirements.
  • Additional Credits: Contains all the courses the student has taken that do not fulfill defined degree requirements.
  • Insufficient and Excluded Repeat Courses: Lists all courses taken with grades that are insufficient to fulfill degree requirements such as F, WD, IP, and RA grades (courses that have been repeated).
  • In Progress: Lists all courses the student is currently taking or has registered for in a future semester.
  • Not Counted: Lists any courses taken that cannot be applied towards the student’s degree, such as remedial course work (i.e. DS 014, DS 082). This may also include transfer courses if the student exceeds the maximum number of community college transfer credits.

How does Degree Works determine which set of degree requirements to use?
Degree Works uses a student’s Catalog Year to determine the set of degree requirements to use when producing a degree audit.
Are in-progress courses applied to the audit?
Courses students are currently taking or have registered for in a future semester are included in the degree audit. These courses are applied into the requirement block(s) where they meet a specific requirement with a grade of IP for In-progress. You will also see them grouped in a separate section titled In-progress near the bottom of the audit. Please be aware that the total credit counts listed near the top of the audit include in-progress credits.
If a student withdraws from a class, will that be reflected in their Audit?
Yes. Courses from which a student has withdrawn will appear in the "Insufficient" block on their audit.
How does Degree Works decide where to place courses that a student has completed?
Degree Works looks at the student’s program holistically and places each course using a “best fit” scenario. We've also programmed priorities so that courses will be used in some areas before they will be used in others. This process will not always be perfect, particularly when multiple possibilities exist, so if the student has taken a course that does not appear in the area in which you wanted to use it, you may create an exception to move the course to the desired area

▼   GPA Calculators

What is the GPA calculator?

  • Graduation Calculator: Determines what grades you need to reach your desired GPA upon graduating.
  • Term Calculator: Sets specific goals for the classes in your current term.
  • Advice Calculator: Determines how many credits of a specific grade average you need to reach your desired GPA.

How do I use the GPA calculator?

  • Choose a GPA Calculator type and click Load.
  • Fill in the requested information and click Calculate.
▼   Notes
I currently keep my own notes on my advisees. What are the benefits of switching to this new system?
With Advising Notes, any notes you enter become a part of a student’s record, and any faculty or administrative staff member who has access to Degree Works can view those notes. This allows any individual working with a student – including future advisors – to have a more complete understanding of the student’s advising history. This also helps us work together to hold students accountable for following through on advice they were given. In addition, because Degree Works is a secure, web-based product, you can easily access your advising notes from any internet connection.
Will students be able to see the notes I enter?
Yes. The student will see your note at the end of his or her worksheet. Any faculty or administrative staff member with access to Degree Works will be able to view all the notes on a student’s record.
I need to record more specific information on a student. Can I enter notes without the drop-down menu?
Not at this time. These advising notes are designed to be general in nature, and to record the basic content of an advising session. To ensure consistency, entries are limited to standardized selections from the drop-down menu. For detailed or particularly sensitive information, we recommend that you continue to keep written notes and store them in a secure location.
How do you decide what notes to include in the drop-down menu?
The drop down list is mostly standard topics. While we realize that these topics will not cover every advising situation, we believe they include the most common topics.
I often have advising discussions with students who are not my assigned advisees. Can I add notes to any student's record?
Yes, and we encourage you to do so.
▼   Troubleshooting

I do not think I am seeing the most current information in my internet browser window. How can I refresh the display?
Usually CTRL/F5 will refresh the display but you can also check out specific suggestions for various browsers at http://www.wikihow.com/Force-Refresh-in-Your-Internet-Browser 

Additional Tips & FAQs for Degree Works
Check out the Degree Works Tips & FAQs for additional information about using the application.

http://www.southalabama.edu/departments/registrar/resources/degreeworkstipsandfaqs.pdf