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App attempts to make class registration process easier

| Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Though course registration is often considered to be a stressful and tedious process, Coursicle has sought to provide a way for Notre Dame students to make multiple course schedules and receive updates when a seat in their desired class opens up during registration since last spring.

The service, originally a website founded by North Carolina graduate Joe Puccio and Harvard graduate Tara Aida, recently released an application for iOS and Android to notify students when seats in desired classes become available.

“Big picture, Coursicle seeks to relieve some of the intense stress associated with registering for classes,” Aida said in an email. “Specifically, our website helps students prepare multiple schedules prior to registration — which can be tedious to do manually — while our app can help them get into the classes in their ideal schedule.”

The app will serve as a replacement for Coursicle’s previous notification feature, which alerted students about seat vacancies via text or email, Puccio said in an email. Last semester, more than 980 Notre Dame students used the original notification feature when it was introduced at Notre Dame, he said.

“Now, students can download the app and receive push notifications when a seat opens up in a class,” Puccio said. “We had a lot of new users last semester, and we were sending so many texts that Verizon started blocking some of our notifications and some Sprint users never received any of our notifications. By building the app, we could get around all of these issues and be sure that students would get all of their notifications. Moreover, the notifications we send via the app are delivered to students’ phones faster than our texts were.”

The app also allows students tracking a class to see immediately whether a class is open, closed, or waitlisted — information not visible on the Coursicle website. Joe said the app will be free to download, but tracking multiple classes will require payment.

“Students can download the app and track one class at a time for free,” he said. “If they want to track multiple classes at the same time, they can pay $2.99 to track unlimited classes for a given semester. As a small company, we tried to keep the service completely free for as long as possible, but unfortunately, it came to the point where we were going to have to start charging or shut down the notification service.”

Puccio said Coursicle now supports over 350 colleges, up from 200 colleges last semester, and added support for Saint Mary’s, both on the website and the app, this weekend. He said the company plans to expand to even more colleges and provide additional features in the future.

“In terms of the app, we’re looking into adding more information about each class being tracked,” he said. “As for the website, we’re planning to add the ability to save classes directly from the schedule view, something a lot of users have written in to request this semester.”

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