myPathway paves way for advanced standing


Since November, the office of the registrar at Sheridan College has overhauled its advanced standing system.

Called myPathways, the new system allows students to apply for advanced standing online, bypassing the usual steps involved in the process.

“Up until this time, students who wanted to request their transfer credit had to fill out forms in triplicate, take a form here, take a form there, grab an extra copy of their transcripts,” said Linda Dalton, the college’s registrar. “It was very labour-intensive for the students and we wanted to make it easier.”

The site has been built to allow students to easily transfer credits from their old courses to Sheridan, if those courses are valid. Once an application for advanced standing has been put in, the student can track it live.

Students can apply for advanced standing in electives, as well as core courses that are a part of the program they are currently in. Courses more than five years old can also be considered for advanced standing; however, they have to be screened by the student’s program coordinator first. For example, in a computer sciences course, the material taught then may not apply now.

“What happens is the student makes their request and then it’s filtered through an overall dashboard and sent through to the program co-ordinator for review,” explained Stephanie D’Avolio, a registrar’s office staff member. “The program co-ordinator will only see courses that they need to review in the system. All of the information is there for them, such as the grades and course outline. They look at the request and they either approve or deny it.”

If the older course is approved for advanced standing, the software used in myPathways adds a rule to the system, that in the event of a similar course being submitted for an advanced standing request, the process becomes automatic and does not have to be brought to the co-ordinator’s attention again.

According to Dalton, student response to the new system has been positive, citing a survey taken by the registrar earlier this year.

“Online advanced standing is very helpful and easy to use,” wrote a student in the anonymous survey.

As of this year, there is no cutoff date for when a student can apply for advanced standing in their courses, although it is being considered.

“Whether or not we should have that rule is a question we want to ask,” said Dalton.