Tech review: MSVU student handbook mobile app

MSVU was the first university in NS to launch an electronic version of their student handbook.

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Unlike most smartphone apps, the Mount Saint Vincent University mobile handbook can be downloaded via a mobile website address, not the Apple app store or Blackberry app world. This makes the app available on iPhone, Blackberry and android phones, as well as most tablets.

How do I get it?

To download the app, visit the mobile website on your smart phone or tablet browser, tap the icon on the landing page, and choose to save the app to your home screen.

Technically, you don't need to own a smart phone to actually use the app, as a non-mobile version. Because the app is downloaded via a mobile site, this means that anyone can access the app from a browser on their PC or laptop.

Features

Mount Calendar - Important dates for students such as the start dates for exam periods, when residence closes for the holidays, and the last days to register or drop courses.

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Screen shot of the student MSVU student handbook mobile app.

Student Union Info - A full list of the student union executive, staff and elected councillors.

Student Life - Information on campus activities, events, awards, scholarships, societies, athletics, and international student services.

Graduation - Information for graduating students including links to the Facebook group, and contacts for the graduation committee.

Jobs/Volunteering - List of current jobs and volunteer positions available at MSVU.

myMount - Link to the myMount website, which has email, course registration, and course calendar information.

Mount Networks - A list of live links to MSVU related social media groups or websites.

Campus Services - Information and contact numbers for all student services such as health & wellness, daycare, tutor database and the writing resource centre.

Campus Directory - Maps, building directories and telephone contact list for the entire university.

Partners & Student Discounts - A list of local businesses offering student discounts or exclusive deals for MSVU students. Detailed information on each business is also included.

Does it work?

The student union at the Mount named the app well: a mobile student handbook. This narrows down the capability of the app to that of your physical, printed student handbook…  but steps it up a level. Like the printed handbook, the app offers all essential student information. With the addition of live links and an internet connection, the possible information that the app could link you to is endless.

The real value of the app is easy-to-find, well organized information on the university, and contact numbers. Beyond that, there are a lot of things the app doesn't actually do, although it will guide you in the right direction.

Take for example the myMount section on the app. At first glance, you're under the impression that you're going to be able to register for courses and make payments via the app itself, but all it does is link you to the myMount website (and not even a mobile version). This means it would be pretty inconvenient to actually try and make a student accounts payment on that website, on your tiny smart phone screen.

More than anything, I find this app to be an easier to navigate version of the Mount website. I would rather use the mobile site on my laptop, since the information I'd be looking for would be easier to find. There are also many helpful links and guidance to do the things you need to do: just the app itself doesn't do them.

My fave

One of the best features of the app is that it is based on a mobile web platform; this means that the student union staff can update information on it instantaneously and there is no technical update required on the user end to get this new information. Kudos to the student union and the designers for choosing this platform.

One of the most useful sections on the app is the student discount and partnership information. Because the app is such a great communication tool, it offers more value for businesses to offer a student discount, which in turn will hopefully lead to more student discounts popping up.

Just for students

As an MSVU alum, I tested its claim to have been designed for not only current students, but alumni, staff and "the greater Mount community." I can see the app being a useful resource for students and staff on campus. For myself as an alum of the school, I don't really see when I would use the app, unless I was looking to get in touch with someone there.

In fact, I interviewed the student union general manager yesterday about the app, and I used the contact list on it to find his information.

The app is definitely not something I'm going to be using on a regular basis, but I'll keep it on my iPhone for now.

Comments on this story are now closed

Great post ....enjoyed reading and collecting information on MSVU for students. Thanks for sharing. iPhone 4 Deals

Posted by iPhone 4 | Nov 18, 2021

This is an awesome review. I appreciate you for sharing the download and working process of MSVU student handbook app. Great work! Keep it up. :) phone call

Posted by Eric | Nov 16, 2021