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The Daily Tar Heel

New 15 minute class change time will begin spring semester

These issues result from the distance between buildings, the growing campus and the fact that the student population is taking an evermore diverse course load, said Chris Partridge, assistant registrar for scheduling.

“Professional schools across campus, from the medical school to the law school to the business school, are increasingly offering undergraduate classes. It’s not just the College of Arts and Sciences anymore,” Partridge said. “We have to think bigger.”

Classes will begin at 8 a.m. and must be 50 minutes to comply with UNC policy. With the new 15 minute class change break, the second class period will begin at 9:05 a.m. instead of 9 a.m. As the day goes on, the extra time accumulates. The tenth and final period of classes, which currently begins at 5 p.m. and ends at 5:50 p.m., will span 5:45 p.m. to 6:35 p.m.

Partridge said this process started in 2010, and they hired a consulting firm to analyze University space utilization.

“An extra five minutes can be a lot when you’re trying to get set up for class,” he said. “Though this change comes with a longer school day, it provides a lot of opportunity for improvement as well.”

An April memo from Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost Jim Dean informed deans of the change.

“Our current class schedule...(causes) our students to cover unmanageable distances in short periods of time between classes and even to give up hopes of enrolling in courses in disciplines whose classrooms they cannot reach,” the memo read.

Freshman Jack Thompson agreed with the change.

“It will be nice, especially when professors hold you after class has ended,” he said. “Hopefully this will make it easier to change classes and have time to use the bathroom and unpack without rushing.”

Ph.D. candidate Sarah George teaches a 9 a.m. English 105 class in Greenlaw Hall and said the current ten-minute break can cost her instruction time.

“I know that some of (my students) have science classes across campus at 8:00 a.m., and they’re continually coming in late to my class,” she said. “I feel like I either have to wait for them or start repeating information, and I’m losing my 50 minutes of time.”

George said the current class change interval is frustrating for students and faculty alike because there is very little that can be done to cover long distances without being tardy or out of breath.

“At least for the first few minutes of class, you’re not getting the best quality of education when students and instructors are wiping down our faces.”

Freshman Caroline Morgan, who has a class in the Genome Sciences Building that ends 10 minutes before another in Graham Memorial, said she’s looking forward to the change.

“It will be nice to not have to run,” she said.

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