One student’s solution to registration frustration

By Marisa Gallagher

 

When it comes to college, registering for classes isn’t always a piece of cake. It is not uncommon for a student to register for a class just to attend the first day and see that it is not the course that suits them and drops it.

Like many other full-time students across the country, Bryan Krajewski, would register for the maximum credit hours, attend classes and after reading the syllabus, drop courses until he found a schedule he was satisfied with. Had there been access to course syllabi prior to registering, the add/drop nightmares could have been avoided throughout the semesters. Krajewski, who attends school at the University at Buffalo was a frequent user of ratemyprofessor.com, website where students can get an idea of a course and instructor prior to registering,  and realized it wasn’t “thorough enough.” That’s when he came up with the idea for his website, Syllabus Rate.

“Syllabus Rate allows college and university students to view a syllabus before taking the class. This way, students can see grading policies, assignments, attendance policies, class expectations and more,” said Krajewski, when explaining the purpose of the website.

In January of 2013, Krajewski purchased the domain name, www.syllabusrate.com. After taking almost a year’s time to decide if the site was worth the time and investment, he finally contacted a variety of web design companies and chose a company called Webty’s. Webty’s set-up the site in a way that allows Krajewski to make any updates he desires, all he has to do is contact them and they will make the changes immediately.

After drawing up exactly what he wanted for his beneficial-new website, it was designed in November 2013 and Syllabus Rate was launched by December. The website does not currently have any sponsors, but is partially financed by Krajewski’s brother, therefore there are no employees yet that work on the maintenance and upkeep of the website, other than Webty’s.

Since there are no employees or side help with the running of the website, Krajewski himself is the “sole operator” of Syllabus Rate.

“I would like to have employees and help, but right now, being a broke college student, it’s not in the budget,” he said. “Syllabus Rate allows college and university students to view a syllabus before taking the class. This way, students can see grading policies, assignments, attendance policies, class expectations and more,” said Krajewski. “I do everything from marketing to managing finances.”

Since marketing is a major portion of keeping the website up and running, Krajewski spends most of his time traveling to schools across the country passing out flyers, giving away window stickers, t-shirts and more.

Aside from the circulation of marketing materials across campuses nation-wide, “Syllabus Rate is available on every social media platform there is,” said Krajewski, “Facebook and Twitter are personally my favorites because I can directly interact with my market, college students.”

Although Krajewski says that a key to his success is marketing, it is also a bittersweet part of the process.

“I would have to say that marketing is the most difficult at times, but the most fun,” said Krajewski. “I like meeting new people and talking to them about the site.”

Since late December, Syllabus Rate has had almost 25,000 syllabi views, with more than 150 schools with syllabi uploaded, including Kean. Some of the uploaded Kean syllabi include English, economics and interdisciplinary courses.

Any student can register for Syllabus Rate at www.syllabusrate.com with a valid email address. Students are welcome to upload any course syllabi and also have the option to write a brief comment and rate the course,


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