New web functions coming to College soon

Canvas replaces SOCS in the fall semester for the College. (Photo courtesy of Canvas by Instructure)

Information Technology will bring a number of changes to the campus once the 2013-14 academic year begins in the fall. SOCS, email accounts, course evaluations and more will receive renovations or overhauls as the College takes steps to improve security and efficiency.

SOCS will enter its final year next year as Canvas takes over as the primary online academic service. Professors will have the option to choose between the two, but at the end of the year SOCS is set to be shut down permanently, according to Jerry Waldron, Chief Information Officer for the College. The College will also look toward creating a mobile platform for PAWS.

All email usernames on campus will be forced to change their passwords every 90 days beginning in October.

Users will receive an email instructing them to change their passwords two weeks before they are required to change it.

If the password is not changed that day, they will receive a reminder each day until they change it. At the end of the 90-day period, an account will lock its user out if the password is not changed. In this case, a user would need to go to the IT website to reset it.

Every time users reset their password, the 90-day period will restart, according to Waldron. Once a password is used, however, it may not be used again for one year. The password is expected to require at least one uppercase letter, lowercase letter and number.

Course evaluations also look like they are expected to change, as the College tries to move toward a completely digital system, and away from the paper evaluation system that currently consumes upward of 100,000 sheets of paper each semester.

Printing on campus will now require GetIt points, but I still require a life, as the College installs new print stations in labs and the Library. The system will allow students to send the print job to a queue, and then go to any printer in the area and select the job, swipe their ID, and print. Students may also receive the option to print from their laptops.

The College’s landline phone system will be overhauled as well, as many landlines will be removed from residential buildings, though they will remain available for students who need them. The College will work with Campus Police and Res Life to strategically enhance the emergency phone system in dorms.

Verizon Wireless is exploring installing a cell tower closer to campus, as the closest tower is currently over a mile away, but there is nothing currently set. According to a recent survey by Student Government and IT, 64 percent of the student population uses Verizon as their wireless provider.

AT&T and T-Mobile, who both have antennas on campus, represent 22 and seven percent of the student population, according to the same survey.