It’s Fall/Winter 2020-2021 enrolment time, Lions! Time to evaluate your options, choose courses and create a super productive schedule that will help you tackle the new term! If you haven’t checked your enrolment window, you can still Find Out When You Can Enrol.
Your classes will most likely all be online (with no scheduled class times, also referred to as asynchronous) or remote (with some scheduled class times; also referred to as synchronous). For more information about online and remote classes, visit these FAQs.
Even though you are probably not coming to campus this fall (unless you are in one of the few classes with required in-person components or are living in residence), you will still want to build yourself a good class schedule to help you manage your time and your course load. One of the best ways to plan your course schedule is to use the Visual Schedule Builder (VSB). In this #YUBlog post, we’ll show you some tips for using the VSB that will help you efficiently enrol in classes.
For further information about the VSB, watch the video below.
What is the VSB?
The VSB is an interactive tool that can help you organize your academic schedule. It allows you to choose desired courses, graphically view schedule options and ultimately create a course timetable that works for you. Based on personal timing preferences and other commitments, the VSB allows you to visually map out your lectures, tutorials and other activities into a conflict-free weekly schedule.
Note: The Visual Schedule Builder does NOT register you into courses and it does NOT replace academic advising or a degree audit. You must use the Registration & Enrolment Module (REM) to officially enrol into your courses. Please contact your Academic Advisor if you have any questions.
How to Build a Schedule with the VSB
In order to build your schedule, follow these easy steps:
Step 1: Choose an academic session.
For example, select the “Fall/Winter 2020-2021” academic session.
Note: The VSB also allows you to filter courses based on campus. Fall 2020 classes are mostly online or remote, not all students will need to use this option. However, students enrolling in one of the few courses that have required in-person components may need to consider this filter.
There are about 70 York U courses in total for Fall 2020 that have an in-person component. You should assume that your courses are online or remote unless you either:
- see a notation otherwise in the course description on the York Courses website; or
- are told by the course instructor (by email or on the course Moodle website) that a specific course has an in-person component
You can view a list of courses with in-person components online.
It is always important to keep checking the FAQs and Student Updates sections of the YU Better Together website to stay informed about all updates.
Step 2: Search for your courses by code or name.
The VSB uses an autofill search function that can help you to find your courses easily.
If you are unsure of timetable abbreviations, be sure to visit the Course Timetable Abbreviations webpage.
Step 3: Select your course. Once it is selected, it will appear on the grid under “Generated Results.”
In the scenario above, we have a three-credit (3.00) course that only takes place in the Fall term, a six-credit (6.00) course that spans from the Fall to the Winter term and a three-credit (3.00) course that only occurs during the Winter Term.
“AP” stands for the Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies, “SC” stands for the Faculty of Science, “WRIT” is the abbreviation of the Writing Department, “CHEM” is for the Department of Chemistry.
“EN” (or English), is the language of instruction and the numbers “1000”, “1003” and “1004” tell you that these are first-year courses.
Courses delivered fully online, like the example above, may not be visible on the weekly schedule because they do not have a specified meeting time. However, these courses (where instructional format = ONLN) will appear in the bottom section of the VSB.
The bottom section of the VSB summarizes all the courses that a student selected (online or otherwise). Therefore, don’t forget to manually plot ONLN courses on your calendar to keep track of your lectures.
Step 4: Repeat steps 2 and 3 for each of your courses
If you’d like to remove a course, click the “X” on the top right-hand corner of the course box. If you only want to temporarily remove your course, deselect the checkmark next to the course code.
Troubleshooting with the VSB
Problem: Too many possible schedules? You’ll receive a message from the VSB prompting you to reduce or pin some of your courses.
Advice: Pinning your major courses will help the VSB narrow down the number of schedules available to you. Once you pin a course, the VSB will acknowledge your preference for that course’s date, time and place. However, you will not be able to see other options for that course unless you unpin the item.
You can pin a course by clicking on the course in the grid. A red thumbtack will appear confirming your choice.
Problem: Do you see “No Results” when building your schedule? That means there’s a schedule conflict.
Advice: Pin down the courses required for your major and slowly add or remove the other courses in your schedule.
Tips for Using the VSB
Here are some tips that will help you seamlessly navigate through the VSB:
Easily browse through your schedules using the arrow keys. Hold down the arrow keys to change through schedules quickly.
Filter your course search to find the most suitable schedule for you. Here are the filtering options that you will have when using the VSB:
- Full Classes
- Online Classes
- Most Days Off
- Morning Classes
- Mid-Day Classes
- Evening Classes
- Most Time Off-Campus
- Most Time On-Campus
Click and drag times on the schedule where you would not like to have class. This will help narrow down your timetable options!.
Difference between online and remote courses for Fall/Winter 2020-2021
- ONLN courses do not have designated meeting times. You may also see these courses referred to as “asynchronous”. Students are expected to log into the course site regularly to keep up to date on what might be expected regarding readings and other learning activities.
- All other course types (BLEN, LECT, SEMR, TUTR, etc.) will be offered remotely in the Fall term and will have, some scheduled meeting times, depending on how the professor has planned the course. These courses may operate both asynchronously and synchronously.
- Synchronous courses have designated meeting times remotely. If by the start of the Fall term, you have not received an email or information posted in Moodle, or other university learning management sites (Canvas, etc.), email your course instructor for details.
- Courses that appear in the lecture schedule as CLIN, LAB, or STDO might be taught remotely, but some will have protocols in place to allow for limited class meets on campus. Students enrolling in a CLIN, LAB, or STDO class are advised to check with the department offering the course to determine if any of the class meets will be held on campus.
- If you start a class online or remotely in the Fall term and later in the term or the academic year classes move back on-campus, you will still be able to complete your course(s) online or remotely.
The VSB is a fantastic tool that can help you find your perfect schedule. Now that you have the #YUBlog’s guide to the VSB, you’re ready to register for the new term!
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