Release notes

4/17 Update for Accessibility Format Users

The new upgraded system launches Monday April 20. As stated in a previous post (below), Monday morning 10 processes will be accessible to people using adaptive technology - the remainder will be made accessible between April 20 and mid-August 2015. Updates will be emailed and posted here.

Meanwhile, there are two known issues users may experience:

  1. Users using Internet Explorer and JAWS may experience a crash while using the "Search for Classes" function in the registration process. We are working to find a solution. To work around this issue we recommend using Firefox instead of Internet Explorer.
  2. Some of the processes that will not be accessible at launch may appear to be accessible or start out accessible then become inaccessible as users go through the process. A solution is identified and should be in place by May 1.

Lastly, we know that none of the HR functions available in the upgraded system will be accessible on Monday. If you are University staff, please talk with people in your department or college about workarounds until all functions are accessible.

And remember, the MyU help menu has contact information for people to contact if you get stuck or need assistance. That contact information is also below on this page.

Thank you for your patience as we all move through this transition.

--The Upgrade Accessibility Team


Processes Accessible at Launch

The Disability Resource Center and Upgrade staff are working to ensure the upgraded system is as accessible as possible for people with disabilities who use adaptive technologies (AT). Some of the new and expanded self-service processes will not yet be ready for AT at launch time. Below is a list of processes that will be accessible for the April 20 launch to people using adaptive technologies. This list will be updated weekly until all processes are accessible.

  • HR Recruiting Solutions: Candidate Gateway (public)
  • Student Center This Week’s schedule
  • Student Center Account Summary
  • Student Center Personal Info
  • Student Center Contact Info
  • Student Center Search for Classes
  • Student Center Weekly Schedule
  • Student Center Enroll/Add Classes
  • Student Center Enrollment Shopping Cart
  • Student Center Student Financials

Partnership Strengthens Upgrade Accessibility for People with Disabilities

When The Upgrade launches on April 20, a new MyU will provide additional self-service functions for students, staff, and faculty. The Disability Resource Center (DRC) and The Upgrade staff have established an innovative partnership and brought on additional resources to make these systems as accessible as possible for people with disabilities who use adaptive technologies (AT).

While MyU will be accessible to people who use AT, some of the new and expanded self-service processes will not yet be ready for AT at launch time (see the list of processes ready for AT). The University is committed to bridging this gap to move toward full accessibility.

If you have not yet requested that we turn on the accessible format for you and would like to have it when the upgraded systems launch, contact Scott Marshall now. After launch, email or call 1HELP to turn the accessible format on or off.

All students, staff, and faculty can receive support during The Upgrade from their regular contact centers:


  1. Students with questions about registration, financial aid, billing, payment, student records, and veterans benefits should contact their campus One Stop office:

  2. University staff and faculty with HR process questions should contact ohr@umn.edu or 1-800-756-2363.

Stay up-to-date on accessibility at the Disability Resource Center's Upgrade accessibility page, the Upgrade blog, or email Scott Marshall to receive accessibility-related emails.


Upgrade accessibility: Getting access to the accessible format

Remember that system upgrade that’s coming? Remember that we’re working on it to make it accessible? If you use adaptive technologies such as a screen reader (JAWS, NVDA), a screen magnifier, or Dragon Naturally Speaking to navigate the web, you will interact with the system in a format that’s being built for adaptive technology users.

If you use adaptive technologies, we need to know who you are!

If you think you will want to interact with the system in this accessible format, you must email me - Scott Marshall - and tell me you want the accessible format for the upgrade. Please do this no later than Friday March 13.

If you have questions about how you want to use the system, please call and we can talk (612.626.4954).


PeopleSoft Upgrade: Introduction and Accessibility

This is the first message in a series of messages that are important updates regarding the accessibility of a major system upgrade here at the University (the system is called PeopleSoft). You will use PeopleSoft to do many things:

  • Students, you will use it to register for courses, check financial aid status, and more.
  • Staff and faculty, you will use it to request time off, check your vacation balances, submit your grades, and more.

This upgrade will affect all staff and students. Accessibility for people with disabilities using adaptive technology (i.e. screen readers, screen magnifiers, etc.) is an important part of the upgrade. If you are a person with a disability, these messages are extremely important. We invite you to stay up-to-date.

In addition to messages posting here, most messages are being posted to the University-wide Upgrade blog and we are sending similar messages via email. If you'd like to receive those emails, please email Scott Marshall in the DRC and let him know. We also have Frequently Asked Questions listed at the bottom of this page.

Please stay tuned - more information soon.


Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Upgrade?

“The Upgrade” refers to a major system upgrade that will affect everyone on campus. The system is called PeopleSoft and the University uses it for everything from students registering for classes to staff tracking their vacation and sick time balances to faculty entering grades. The old (current) system is terribly out of date and the company that developed the system will not support our version for much longer.


How do students, staff, and faculty use this system? 
Short answer: For just about everything. Students will use this system to register for classes, manage financial aid, create degree plans, apply for graduation, pay tuition, and much more. Staff and faculty will use the system to manage time off, submit timesheets, enroll in benefit programs, manage contact information, submit grades, check class rosters...and much more.


What is the U doing to make the system fully accessible? 

The Enterprise System Upgrade Program (ESUP - the community of people working to make the Upgrade possible), the University’s Disability Resource Center (DRC), and outside vendors are working together to create a format that is as accessible as possible for people using adaptive technologies such as screen readers, voice input, and screen magnifiers.

The initial development of this format is complete. Accessibility testing of each and every page of all self-service applications is well underway. Testers find mistakes, the DRC verifies them and send them to the developers to be fixed. Once fixed, the DRC verifies the fix or if not fixed, works with the developer until it is.


If I’m a person with a disability and I want to access this accessible format, what do I need to do?

Email Scott Marshall and tell him you want the accessibility format for the Upgrade. Scott will communicate that preference with the Office of Information Technology who will “turn on” the accessibility format for you.


Can I change formats if one doesn’t work for me?
Yes. You can decide to at any point to turn off or turn on the accessibility format. We are currently determining who to contact with those requests. More to come here an via email.


When will the system be fully accessible?

We’re not sure. We have prioritized our work and will continue to test, verify, and re-test every page necessary. The Disability Resource Center will soon have a chart on their Web site that lists those pages and processes that ARE accessible and those that are NOT YET accessible.


Why isn’t the system accessible in the first place? 
The pages that the system creates without any modification are not accessible. That’s just the way the system currently is and there’s no way to make it accessible in its native format.


: If I have the accessible format turned on and get stuck in a process and can’t do something I need to do (i.e. register for a class), what should I do? 

Answer: If you're a student stuck in a student-related process, call OneStop at 612-624-1111 from 8am - 4pm, M - F, or 1-800-400-8636 toll-free from outside the Twin Cities metropolitan area; or email onestop@umn.edu.


Can I still call or go to OneStop? 
Yes. OneStop will be able to help you in-person, via email, or on the phone.


If I don’t use adaptive technology can I still use the accessibility format? 
We advise you not to use the accessible format if you don’t need it.


How will I know when the accessible system is ready for me to use?

Accessibility will not be all or nothing. Different processes in the system will become accessible over the near term. The DRC will post progress on it’s Web site. That page is not yet developed but will be soon.


The new system is confusing to me. Are there resources to help me understand it and navigate it better?

If you're accessing the system through adaptive technology and feel confused about navigation or how it works, please email Scott Marshall in the Disability Resource Center.