North Central Implements New Block Scheduling

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Along with a new registration system in Colleague, North Central looks to improve class scheduling by streamlining when classes will be

Shifting the old class and chapel schedule is the latest in a series of major changes at North Central University. The campus is offering more online options than ever while building three completely online degrees. Recently, the administration unveiled the $3 million software program that controls class registration, grades, records and budgets across the school.

Now, all the class times are being simplified into consistent blocks. This means that the traditional three day per week classes will be converted into a two day per week timeframe. Almost all classes will meet either Monday-Thursday or Tuesday-Friday in 70 minute time slots. Only “slot” classes, which meet for two or more hours, and other irregular once-per-week classes will meet Wednesdays. Chapel will continue to be daily through the week, but the timeframe will change.

According to a statement from the academic affairs office, the administration made the change for several reasons. Students who need to work off campus could be aided by a more straight-forward scheduling, as would those hoping to schedule meetings. It is also easier to recruit adjunct faculty who have more than one job and cannot take up to three days off every week. Additionally, the schedule change removes 7:45 a.m. class starts—all first hours now begin at 8 a.m.

“I believe that the block schedule next year will be beneficial for students,” said Kenneth Schrock, the 2019-2020 student body president. “It will make scheduling easier in the future and will also allow students to work more and pursue internships.”

Core required classes will be scheduled earlier in the day and finish by 2:30 p.m., so students involved in sports can get to practice, and students who have to work can allot their afternoons and nights for longer shifts. Later time slots will be used for courses with multiple sections. Regular evening classes will be scheduled from 6–8:40 p.m.

Chapel’s new start time will be at 10:45 a.m. and will conclude by 11:35. Block C will begin at noon. The extra time between chapel and Block C is for students to continue in prayer or fellowship.

Friday’s regular “Prayer and Fasting” chapel will move to Wednesday in order to take advantage of the timeframe from noon to 2:30 p.m., during which no classes will take place. This will allow for an “unrushed” timeframe, according to the release from academic affairs.

In place of regular classes, most staff and faculty committee meetings will take place on Wednesdays.

The academic affairs office statement said that students on a meal plan should avoid taking block C and D courses in order to reduce cafeteria lines. Students who have a block C course are advised to eat during block D, and vice versa. The cafeteria will expand serving times to accommodate this updated schedule.

The schedule, while different, looks to make next year easier to be planned around and worked with, for both the students and faculty.