UDSIS now allows parental access
Published: Monday, March 4, 2013
Updated: Monday, April 22, 2013 21:04
Sharing university grades online became easier this Thursday when the office of the registrar publicly released an update to UDSIS that allows students to grant access to portions of their account to their parents, according to registrar Jeff Palmer.
Through the application, called Parent Guardian Secure Services, students can invite users to view their finances, class schedule, final exam schedule, honors and awards and dining and flex information. Each student completely controls their permissions and any combination of each can be administered. For example, a student could give access to their class schedule and honors and awards while restricting the other options.
The IT department developed the program with guidance from Palmer’s office and Student Financial Services. The application, conceived in 2009 and in development since summer of 2011, was created due to popular demand from parents who wished to see their students’ grades, Palmer said. However, the university is federally restricted from releasing academic information, so Palmer and his office gave students the choice to share.
“I think because in high schools and elementary schools now, parents do have access online to grading information,” Palmer said. “They can talk to teachers and teachers can tell grades. It switches when [students] go to college, it reverses. Parents call assuming it’s the same thing in college and it’s not.”
Until the implementation of PGSS, there was no way for the office of the registrar to show grades, Palmer said. Now, when parents call demanding grades, he can clue them in on the existence of the application.
Freshman Victoria Kaminski said she has been personally sharing her grades with her parents, but she would probably not sign up for the service. She prefers to approach her parents after the semester is over so they can see the complete body of her work, she said.
“Growing up through private school, all through high school, they’ve always seen my grades and always been a part of my education,” Kaminski said.
Furthermore, her parents receive discounts on their car insurance when she gets good grades, which gives a monetary incentive to share, she said.
The link to access PGSS is located on the UDSIS account page in the “Academics” section. From the PGSS page, students can enter an email address they wish to grant access and the portions of UDSIS they want to permit the user to. The email address “firstname.lastname@example.org” sends an automated confirmation email to the entered address, and the receiver completes the account setup process. All invitations expire 30 days from the time they are sent.
The process is completely automated and the registrar does not see who, if anyone, is given access to anything, Palmer said. He said he expects the program to be popular, but he will not be able to see exactly how many students sign up for the service.
The application went live two weeks ago, but the office of the registrar did not make an announcement so they could beta test the program with student workers within the office, he said.
Freshman Marilyn Monkowski said she already signed up for the service and the automatic process takes the responsibility of self-reporting. Monkowski’s mom did not ask her to sign up for the service, but she preemptively gave her mother access because she knew she would appreciate the gesture.
“My mom makes me tell her my grades anyway,” Monkowski said. “She’s helping me pay for college so I kind of have to let her in on what I got for grades.”