A registrar can be found in any school setting, from high school to college to vocational institutes. School registrars spend a lot of time working with students; however, the job also involves working with administration and providing support to staff. A registrar's job is different from day to day. Some days can be more tedious and involve a lot of paperwork, but other days are challenging and involve finding unique ways to help students overcome problems such as scheduling errors or creative ways to help students graduate on time.
A registrar who works in a high school is often focused on enrolling students, helping to place students in the right classes, and helping students apply for and prepare for college. A college registrar oversees student registration and academic records. He helps schedule classrooms, maintain student records, clear students for graduation, and help the university pass guidelines for financial aid. He needs to be well-versed in technology and able to use the latest software to assist his duties. Registrars use database software for record-keeping, education management software to help students coordinate with classes, and test score analysis software.
An applicant's education helps to determine the type of registrar job he can get. A bachelor's degree is appropriate for some entry-level positions, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. However, to work as a post-secondary university registrar, you need a master's degree. Some employers also require new registrars to have related work experience.
The work environment for a registrar can be relaxed or stressful, depending on the time of year. At the beginning of the school year when students are enrolling, the job can involve long hours and intense workdays. At the end of the school year when courses need to be verified and students need to be cleared for graduation, the workdays can be stressful again. A registrar's job can also be difficult when he is enforcing school policy and has to reject a student's request. Registrars need to be organized and always on top of their work, as they may frequently be asked to produce documentation of a student's progress toward his degree or verify that a student's degree program allows him to be enrolled in certain courses.
Registrars' salaries depend highly on the amount of education they have and where they are working. The 2010 median pay for all college administrators, including registrars, student life, and admissions was $83,700 a year, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.