DLSU’s My.LaSalle (MLS) system has gone a long way since early 2002. From managing online enlistment, application to graduate, final grades, and now the self-printing of enrollment assessment forms, among others, the system has been comprehensively addressing the needs of the Lasallian academic community.
Today, the University’s enrollment system is comprised of the MLS and the newly added platform Animo.sys, which was first introduced back in 2013. These platforms are used simultaneously during enrollment season. Students make use of MLS to keep track of course offerings, clearances, and grades, while Animo.sys can be used for the overall process of enrollment such as making course petitions and adding, dropping, and swapping of subjects.
Starting point of the MLS
According to Information and Technology Services (ITS) Director James Sy, MLS was launched back in early 2002 as the “self-service web portal of the different application systems which were not directly accessible to the students.”
In The LaSallian’s news archives, it has been shown that the system has had its own pros and cons during its first years. Among the pros was the successful online enrollment of MLS during its first testing in 2003.
As time passed, several problems were encountered, such as miscoded courses, late loading and listing of prerequisite and co-requisite subjects, breach in the identification system, lack of information dissemination, clearance, payment in installment basis, and the de-blocking of regular students.
Launching the Animo.sys
In 2013, DLSU introduced Animo.sys to offer a more efficient enrollment system than MLS. The Animo.sys is powered by the multinational computer technology corporation Oracle, which offers its system as a server to educational facilities.
Sy explains, “The underlying technology of the MLS portal is nearing obsolescence, and the new Oracle-based Animo.sys is an upgrade.” Furthermore, this database management system was intended to be stronger and more suitable for accommodating the hefty number of students enrolling in the University.
Like MLS, whose initial testing was successful but was met by complications in the long run, the same happened with Animo.sys in the enrollment process.
“[Animo.sys] initially failed in 2013, because the machine was not tuned or calibrated properly. After the failure, we did several rounds of stress testing and performance tuning on the system, and it worked well on the re-launch,” Sy comments on addressing the problems encountered during the Animo.sys launch.
Current pros and cons
Blake Padilla (IV, BSE-MAT) describes his enrollment in MLS as “convenient in terms of looking for courses and how many slots there are left.” For Animo.sys, he posits that it has its advantages and disadvantages. He commends the “user-friendly interface,” but suggests improvements.
Benedict Rosario (II, LIM-BSA) shares the same sentiment, describing Animo.sys as convenient for DLSU students who do not need to line up for enrollment, as compared to students of other universities.
Padilla, however, is critical of the system. He recalls, back in 2014, he experienced a system failure during his enrollment using Animo.sys. He narrates that he had to enter his classes again via the system, which was very inconvenient since he likens the experience to the Hunger Games where students “fight” for the best schedule they could have for the term.
In resolving these problems, Sy notes that the ITS assembles an interdepartmental team formed by staff from ITS, Enrollment Services Hub, and the Office of the University Registrar. Before enrollment, the team reminds the students of certain enrollment details and related procedures.
Sy clarifies that for students who have problems “beyond [the team’s] capabilities,” the team will prepare tickets then pass them directly to the ITS back office for resolution. Sy adds that the University registrar monitors social media accounts for complications and pass tickets to the ITS back-office. After the resolution, the registrar will then reply via social media. Sy adds that the system administrators also oversee the system performance for system failures.
With regard to the University’s plan for the future of MLS, Sy posits that the University foresees an integration of MLS and Animo.sys. This integration will welcome functionalities found in the former to new enrollment system. These functionalities include student record management, Pahiram Libro, Resource Reservation for Organizations, and Purchase UAAP tickets, among others.