What even is a DARS Report?: Sophomore Portfolio Review 2020

Posted on Jun 3rd, 2020 by Sean Schumacher

You’ve probably heard the word whispered in advising meetings, perhaps glanced over it in an official document or two. Maybe, though, you’ve never actually seen one: a DARS (short for Degree Audit Report System) Report. It’s actually super helpful to make sure you’re both ready for the review and keeping on track with your degree.

If you’re a PSU student, you can run a DARS report by logging into Banweb and choosing the Student Services tab. The registrar has a super helpful guide for getting to the right place and submitting an audit request (which is what we mean when we ask for a DARS).

What catalog year and major do I choose?

To generate a DARS, you’ll need to know your degree program. We have a few: BA, BS, or BFA, and there are separate options for post-baccalaureate students and students taking design as a second major in these degree program list, too. It can seem like a lot.

Talking to an advisor about which path is best for you is always a good idea if you’re unsure. Most new students starting after Fall 2017 choose the BFA, but those with credits from Summer 2017 or earlier can choose the BA or BS degree programs instead.

These degree programs can vary from year-to-year. Your advisor can also help you choose one that fits you best. In general, a good place to start is with the catalog year that matches the term you started at PSU.

How do I get a PDF of my DARS?

In the upper right corner of the report, you’ll find a Print/Download button. Press that, and you’ll be taken to a simpler, easier to print form. Mac users can then choose File > Print from their browser and click the “PDF” button in the lower right to generate a PDF. Windows users can use Print too, from Chrome: just choose PDF as the “printer” you’re sending your document to.

How do I check that everything is right?

It can be a bit tricky! The best thing to do is refer to the Sophomore Portfolio Review handbook’s “Required Coursework” section and compare it with the section of your DARS about your 100- and 200-level graphic design major coursework. If you are missing a course listed there, an advisor might be able to help.

This is part of a series of posts about the 2020 Sophomore Portfolio Review