A student has taken a course not offered at our school (orphan course). Can I match it to a course we offer?

A student's credit history will sometimes have courses that do not exist in a school's current course offerings. The two main reasons for this are:

  • The student has transferred from another school.
  • The school has recently changed or discontinued courses.

Credit history is an important part of calculating prerequisite and diploma requirements in Career Cruising. It would be difficult for a school to configure every course ever taken; therefore, Course Planner allows you to match courses in student history that are not offered at the school to an existing course that is similar. This action helps the application improve calculations based on prerequisite and diploma requirements.

For example, assume course ENG1-OLD is no longer offered and a new course, ENG1-NEW, is now used. If we match ENG1-OLD --> ENG1-NEW, the following prerequisite calculations can be made:

  • If ENG1-NEW is required to graduate, ENG1-OLD will suffice.
  • If ENG202 requires a prerequisite of ENG1-NEW, then ENG1-OLD will suffice.

ENG1-OLD will still appear in a student's credit history and maintain whatever properties were passed by the Student Information System (name, credit value, etc).

Not all courses can be matched, nor do they need to be. If a course is not matched, it will still appear and count as an elective course. Consider orphan matching "fine tuning" in Course Planner. It may be difficult to match everything in advance, but you can adjust it during testing or adjust it when you come across a student with exceptions to course history.

To access the course-matching feature:

  1. From your Advisor Homepage, click Course Planner.
  2. Click the Match Orphan Courses link.
  3. When looking at the unmatched list, you'll see the following columns:

Orphans - This column indicates how many times this course is located in students' course history. The smaller the number, the less important it is to match this course.

OrphanCourse - This column gives the description of the orphan course in the credit history (a code and a name will sometimes be shown).

Course Master Match - This is a blank column that will be filled in as you match courses.

Once you've identified the orphan courses, there are two approaches to matching: Standard Matching and Character Matching.

To use Standard Matching (the Character Matching check box is not selected):

  1. Click the EDIT icon to the right of the orphan course you want to match. This action will launch a pop-up window titled Course Master List.
  2. Look up the course in the Course Master using the Select a discipline drop-down menu or the FIND textbox.
  3. Select the course by clicking the button to the left of the course code. This action will add the match to the Course Master Match column for that orphan course.
  4. Click Save to match the course. You can find your matched course in the Matched Courses tab.  
  5. Repeat for all courses you'd like to match.

To use Character Matching (the Character Matching check box is selected):

  1. Select the number of characters to match from the drop-down menu at the top. Start with the highest number for greater accuracy.
  2. If no matches appear in the Course Master Match column, reduce the number of characters. Example: Using a 4-character match, ENG101 will match to ENG1A1
  3. If more than one match is found in the Course Master, a drop-down menu of choices will appear. If you agree with a match, check the box on the far right. Click Save to match the course. 

IMPORTANT: Your session could time out if you don't click the SAVE button after 15 minutes. Save your matches every few minutes to be safe.

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