Coursedog All-in-One for Community Colleges


January 3, 2021



Community Colleges: Your Community Needs You Now More Than Ever

How Coursedog Can Help

At Coursedog, we believe community colleges are foundational to American economic and educational systems. By helping a diverse set of students achieve their academic and professional goals, you facilitate upward mobility and accessibility for all. Aspirations that we share.

We also understand (and empathize) that times are tough during this ongoing pandemic, especially for the populations that you serve. It was a fall semester like no other. That’s for sure. But community colleges have always had to be creative, responsive, and resilient. And today that’s key. Because now, more than ever, low-cost higher education options are necessary and important.

Fall Enrollments Down. Optimism Up.

Early on during the COVID pandemic, national research (and community colleges themselves) predicted an increase in enrollment, particularly if four-year institutions stayed online through the next school year. “I do think the community college will be an attractive option for a lot of people,” said Kevin Brockbank, president of Spokane Community College. (NBC News)

And for good reason. Community colleges generally do well during economic downturns, attracting out-of-work adults looking to add skills and younger students trying to save money on tuition. In fact, a new study (MIT Education and Finance Policy) found enrollment in community colleges grows on average by 3 students for every 100 laid-off workers within 3 years.

However, unlike what happened during previous recessions, community colleges saw a decline for fall 2020 of 9.4% in enrollment and a 22.7% drop for first-year students nationwide. This compared to a total undergraduate enrollment decrease of only 4%. (National Clearinghouse Research Center)

 “Freshmen who declined to enroll in community colleges likely did so because of strained family finances or other obstacles, not because of personal preference for a campus experience,” said Doug Shapiro, executive director of the NSCH Research Center.

Yet, even though unemployment rates reached their highest level since the Great Depression, community colleges remain in a unique position to rebound. And that’s a good thing because your community, whose members are experiencing more obstacles than ever, needs you more than ever.

Working to Rebound, Regroup, Recover

Over the past ten years, community colleges have made progress in providing critical access to educational and economic opportunities for many underserved Americans. They have focused increasingly on student success, improving completion rates, and reducing gaps between different populations of students. This decade of reform puts community colleges in a good position to adapt. (Greenville News)

So, how can you continue to maintain your open-door policies and help students complete degrees and certificates that prepare them for economic success? What you need is the ability to find out which courses to offer based on student demand, determine how those courses connect to real world outcomes, and create guided pathways for students to help the velocity at which they get their degree. 

One of the key ways to do this is to adopt technology that can help you solve the curricular management problems you face, helping you save time and money to focus on attracting and retaining students.

How Coursedog Can Help

Our all-in-one solution for class scheduling, curriculum, and course catalog will drive efficiencies across your campus. With this integrated platform, you can align your academic services with student success, focus on strategic enrollment management, reduce costs, and increase tuition yields. Here’s how.

Adopting an All-in-One Solution

Scheduling, curriculum, and catalog. These processes, though often disjoined, have an important relationship with one another. So, it makes the most sense to marry them. Why is this so important, especially in these times?

By adopting a single product, you save staff time working on multiple procurements and contracts and eschew multiple one-time implementation fees. Coursedog’s single implementation allows you to unite teams around campus with our project manager, so they can stay in sync on the project and save an additional 4-6 months that would be spent implementing and training on multiple systems. Plus, integrating everything using our tight bi-directional integrations with your SIS provides a single source of truth, all the time.

And with automated policies, rules, and workflows, along with automatic email notifications and error checks to eliminate back and forth email chains, you and your staff have a lot more time to concentrate on boosting student success and retention. And real-time analytics and insights will enable you to build a smarter schedule and curriculum plans, so your students get the courses they want. 

Focusing on Strategic Enrollment Management

By integrating bidirectionally with your SIS, Couresdog eliminates the need to enter data manually (and the inevitable snafus that go with it) in spreadsheets and multiple systems, saving administrators and deans countless labor hours. And you can stop manually tracking registration, scheduling conflicts, and curricular proposals, and spend more time on program development and student services to help get enrollment back on track.

Create a single source of truth for all of your curriculum and schedule planning data: One master calendar for all of your scheduling data. One curriculum audit log for all changes to courses, degree programs, and more. And one exportable audit log of the entire history of your curriculum and scheduling data. What does this mean for you? Peace of mind, less time spent when accreditation comes around, and more time for more strategic projects. 

Improving Efficiencies

In an environment where every dollar counts, features like enrollment heat maps and an ROI dashboard put you ahead of the curve.

Enrollment heat maps: An out-of-the-box feature of our scheduling platform, these give you immediate and instantaneously updated insight into how effectively your schedules achieve operating efficiency. For one, you can filter by building or room type to be cognizant of social distancing measures.

ROI dashboard: If you’re a registrar, provost, VP, dean, or director, you can leverage enrollment data to assess and drive operating efficiency. For example, it immediately highlights both over-filled and under-filled sections, so schedulers can make adjustments in real time.

Simply put, not making efficient use of the resources at your college is costly for students and administrators alike. That’s why it’s key to be able to cut under-enrolled sections and expand those in high demand dynamically. This allows you to create a schedule geared toward what students need to graduate ie. Student Centric Scheduling. You can also improve space utilization, increase process efficiency, and empower students to persist with critical information.

What’s Next?

 As the high level of uncertainty continues, we support your adoption of an affordable, intuitive platform that eases administrative processes to achieve student success. Get in touch to learn more about our community college discount.

“Ultimately we recognized that by offering an integrated platform Coursedog provides big value in efficiency.” – Steve Young, CIO, Blue Ridge Community College

Why Coursedog for Community Colleges?

  • Affordable, all-in-one platform
  • Intelligent integrations with SIS and other systems
  • More efficient automated workflows
  • Improved data quality with one source of truth
  • More substantive and accessible reporting
  • Data-driven decision making
  • Single platform for all end users to learn
  • One point of service for customer service and billing
  • Ability to always be up to date

What You Will Learn