On Jan. 31, the Concordia College Mobile App, CordMN Mobile, was released to the student body. As of Feb. 4, 625 students had installed this app.
Bruce Vieweg, associate vice president for academic affairs and chief information officer, along with his fellow colleagues, Erik Ramstad, director of enterprise systems and services, and Martin Breth, systems administrator, released the app in hopes of putting direct information in the hands of the students.
“(Creating the app) is something we have wanted to do for a long time,” Vieweg said. “I knew this was the direction, and we needed to be there.”
The CordMN Mobile app, provides various programs and services that the Concordia website already has but in a more convenient way.
“The new Concordia website is already user friendly (mobile aware),” Breth said, “but we can’t add all of these banner related and internal apps to a website.”
Once installed, a student can enter in their credentials, and the CordMN Mobile app allows students to access their schedules, drop classes, check the college and academic calendar and provides contact directories for students and faculty.
The mobile app also provides an easier and more intuitive way to register by letting students add classes of interest into a shopping cart and submit them all at once when it is their turn to register.
The shopping cart feature will be functional this March when it is time to register, but it is possible that there may be some undetermined technical difficulties for the first run.
Yet, students have to be aware if they do not take precaution and set a password on their phones. That is, if their phone were to be lost or stolen, anyone could access their personal student information.
Another potential problem that the app has is difficulty accessing the Moodle interface. Vieweg and his colleagues hope to fix this in the near future along with providing a link to access Touchnet accounts, making it easier for students to check the status of their Concordia bill.
“It’s young; it’s version 1.1,” Ramstad said, “so there may be some faults left to work out, but there is also room for improvement.”
The CordMN mobile app was developed under N2N Servieces Inc., located in Duluth, Georgia. This company is a group of consultants that have developed a series of apps that they sell to various consumers.
The president of the company visited Concordia last year to meet with individuals to see what they were looking for in future applications.
To create the app, Vieweg and his colleagues used a basic design of one of N2N’s apps and put a Concordia twist on it.
“The initial design was the N2N vanilla factory out-of-the-box design,” Ramstad said. “It didn’t have a Concordia look and feel.”
The Online Communications Team or “web team” provided icons, built a framework of images and layouts of pages and screens for the design of the app.
Andrea Wagner, an Online Designer, did the majority of the design work and provided graphics and templates for N2N to include on the app, while the “web team” provided suggestions and technical input on how the app should work.
Breth said that before they could settle on a final design, they had to choose from two or three different choices. He also said that the final design proved to be a fun yet difficult change.
Chris Horsager from ITS was also an important contributor to the app. He worked with N2N to integrate Banner while he completed a significant amount of testing.
Vieweg, Ramstad and Breth all expressed excitement over finally releasing the app to the student body.
They have received positive feedback but encourage more students to express their opinions so they can continue to improve the app.
“I’ll be really curious to see what the general student user thinks about it,” Vieweg said.
This article was written by Kaley Sievert, contributing writer.