portal tricks and tipsThis webpage was written to accompany the De Anza staff development FHDA Portal Basics for Faculty class taught by Jose Rueda.
For a link to get to the portal (and a how-to refresher) go to: http://ets.fhda.edu/call_center/portal
You really must use Firefox to be able to fully use all the functions.
You should remember that every student's privacy is a major concern. The phone number listed for each student may not be their private cell phone number, it might be a family home phone number. If you use email to contact them you are much more likely to get that student, not a parent/guardian/sibling. Imagine how uncomfortable you are going to be if you call the phone number and get a parent. You try to leave a message for the student to call you and the parent becomes concerned that something is wrong. You will need to explain that you can't discuss anything about the student with the parent and the conversation dissolves from there. Using email is much more likely to be hassle free.
Most of this webpage details ways to use portal features and email to increase enrollment and retention.
Students are often still deciding which classes they will attend until the first day of class. I send a welcome to the class email just before the quarter starts with, for example, the news that they don't have to own the text by the first day of class, but if they do they would benefit from having read pages etc. through etc. I also send a link to the campus map with a description of how to find the classroom, answers to typical frequently asked questions about the class and sometimes a link to my faculty website page for that class or to an especially interesting online assignment from the class.
To find a link to a campus map go to http://www.deanza.fhda.edu/map/detailmaps.html and click on the area of your classroom and paste that URL into the email.
If your classroom is off campus, please be assured that some of your students did not notice that when they signed up.
If your first Saturday class session is on a Flea Market Saturday, you could send a warning about parking/traffic congestion with the note that space on the top floor of the Flint Center structure is usually saved for students, and a note that there will be parking attendants asking for ten dollars to park, but if they have purchased a quarter-long permit and tell them they are there for a class, they will let you in without paying. You could include a link such as: Info on how to get a permit is at: http://www.deanza.fhda.edu/parking
Some student email addresses listed at the portal are out of service, so having sent that welcome email, on the first day of class I tell people that if they did not get an email from me they might need to check their quarantine, check email more often or give the college a new email address. You can put this url on the board in the classroom (or have a link to it at your class webpage) for people who do not yet have email: http://www.deanza.edu/students/emailupdate.html
Sometime when emails get bounced back to you you can figure out why and attempt to re-email the student. Look for typical typos, such as JamesSmith@yaho.com
At the My Classes portal page you can look at enrollment before the quarter starts. At my PE 28A lifeguard class I noticed a student who was dropped for non-payment of fees and in an effort to increase enrollment I sent him this email:
"This email is from the instructor for lifeguard training at De Anza College.
The college told me you were enrolled in the lifeguard training class, but were dropped for not paying your fees on time.
You don't have to pay for all your classes/fees at once. De Anza has an installment payment plan that allows you to defer most of your payments.
Go to: http://www.deanza.fhda.edu/registration/cashier/deferpay.html
More students qualify for financial aid than use it or even know they qualify. There are enrollment fee waivers you can apply for online which take about a week to get an answer. For all the details go to http://www.deanza.fhda.edu/financialaid/index.html Look for "waive my fees please" and start with the BOG fee waiver.
All the details about the lifeguard class are at: http://faculty.deanza.edu/donahuemary/LifeguardTrainingFAQs"
Since you can see the waitlist for next quarter's classes, you can decide shortly before the first class day to send an email to at least the first few people on the waitlist encouraging them to attend.
To promote a class you can send an email to previous students who might be interested in it by accessing previous quarter's email lists. For example, you regularly teach History Basics, but have a special class on the History of Surfing in Southern California 1950 to 1970. This new class might not be a big seller. But you can email a description to previous students before registration starts. Note that at the list for a previous quarter (as far back as 2006), you can choose to email only previously enrolled (not waitlisted or dropped) students and choose to only email satisfied customers who received a good grade.
Since most beginning swim classes at De Anza are held in deep water, not all novice swimmers (PE 26A, the adult non-swimmers class) can move on to beginning swimming (PE 26B) at the end of a quarter. When I have a rare shallow water beginning swim class I always email all the recent previous novice students an invitation, and my enrollment increases as a result.
TBA class: Health 57D is a 1/2 unit class designed for recertification in Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation for the Professional Rescuer (CPRFPR) that I teach as a to-be-announced class. Almost every student enrolled does not follow through to the link at the online schedule or the URL in the printed schedule to make an appointment for their challenge test, so everyone in the class gets an email a week or so before the quarter and shortly into the quarter reminding them to read http://faculty.deanza.edu/donahuemary/Health57D.
For another way to promote your classes, if you have or are considering a faculty website, please note that it is now possible to include a clickable link in the online schedule of classes directing students to your website. To see an example go to the De Anza schedule of classes at: http://www.deanza.fhda.edu/schedule/ click on fall, winter or spring quarter and follow through to the complete listing for either HLTH 57A or HLTH 57E.
Save a tree.. and save on printing costs. Email your greensheet (course syllabus) to students instead of printing it!
You can print rosters for your first day of class in three versions :
one for enrolled, and if you have long waitlists it could help to have
one for waitlisted in alphabetical order
and one waitlist in order of the wait sequence.
After you log in at the portal https://portland.fhda.edu:4443/portal/page/portal/DeAnza you first need to click on the My Classes tab. Until the new quarter starts you will then have the list for the current quarter. To get to the upcoming quarter click on the Next Qtr tab and then on each blue italicized name of a class. When there you can simply Print Report of that list as you see it, or click on the arrow to the right of All Students and select enrolled, then choose Print Report. Next, go back to the All Students tab and choose waitlisted. This will give you an alphabetical order waitlist to print. And /or you can choose the Print Waitlist tab on the far right to get a waitlist in order of sequence (priority).
When you get an email from a student with a question that can't wait until class time, you may well have others with the same question who are not emailing you to ask, so a group email could be appropriate.
Possibly of interest to faculty website owners:
One photograph of wildflowers growing from a crack in rock using different Adobe Photoshop Elements filters: Photoshop Elements filters
A collection of gifs, clipart, bullets: clipart borders