Freshmen 101 guide- intro to ORU apps

Rachel Schrader, Senior Writer

During the first few weeks of classes of her first semester, Mia Campbell struggled to navigate through the many websites and apps that Oral Roberts University provided.


The learning curve from high school to college was steep. But after two years of experience at ORU, Campbell now works as the head peer success coach to help other students adjust to college life.


Campbell, now a senior majoring in Public Relations & Advertising, recommends three apps that guided her the most during her freshman year: eAccounts, Pulse and, most importantly, the ORU app.


eAccounts allows students to sign in with their ORU emails and receive updates about their meal plans, including the amount of meal swipes left in the week as well as Sodexo balances for the remainder of the semester. Campbell uses it daily.


The Pulse app is similar to Desire2Learn, or D2L. It notifies students when grades drop and lets them know about upcoming assignments in each course. Using the Pulse app, Campbell stays up-to-date on new content from all of her professors.


Lastly, the ORU app provides so many functions that it is no small feat to know all of the ins and outs, Campbell said. Particularly helpful features include the Laundry View, Student Accounts and the Calendar, she said.


The Laundry View tile shows ORU residents the current status of any laundry in-progress. Instead of getting up to check each dryer and washer, the app does it for them.


The Student Accounts tile gives access to balances and pay plans. This is a great alternative to visiting the office in person, Campbell said.


“You can check your balances and pay through the overview,” she said. “Most people don’t realize that, so it’s a nice feature.”


The Calendar on the app was Campbell’s favorite and most-prized possession during her freshman year. She would copy everything from her classroom numbers to assignments and quiz dates.


“I do remember living on my freshman floor and having girls around me freaking out for hours trying to navigate on how to get around on the app,” she said. “You just need to take a step back and look at the big picture. It’s practice and something you learn.”


To shed some light on the ORU app and other useful platforms, ORU App Coordinator Chris Karottukoikal provided some tips for first-year, transfer and international students.


“In the end, it’s like Instagram or it’s like Facebook,” Karottukoikal said. “You learn it, you go through it every day and learn how to use it.”


As an international student from Dubai, Karottukoikal finds the Community Talk function the most helpful of all. The objective is to connect students on different message boards.


“You can join for your specific needs,” Karottukoikal said. “So, if you’re a commuter or you want to buy something or you need to find a lost-and-found item, there are different community platforms you can join and start building those relationships and connections.”


In addition to those features, Karottukoikal and the IT department are projecting new ways to make the app even more accessible to ORU’s campus services. He hopes to integrate Student Health Services into the app, which would allow students to schedule appointments.


All three apps are free to download from the Google and Apple app stores.