This surprises me because, although I went to college almost 10 years ago, it was the same way for me. I was responsible for my own registration; I could use a computer lab, and sometimes we'd help each other if a bunch of students were registering at the same time, but I could not call up the office and ask them to do it "for me". This may be a new system for your college, but it doesn't seem that new a concept to me.
My opinion is colored by this: Recently, my little sister was having problems getting a schoolbook for her college course. She could have ordered it online and had it in ~2 days, delivered to her home. Instead, two weeks after the course started, she asked me to go to my local branch of the school and buy it there, then she'd pick it up and pay me when she came to town for a visit. Surprise, the local branch was out of that book, and they handed me a two page flyer on every step necessary to order the book online from either another branch or the main bookstore. I gave it to my sister, explaining I'd be willing to help if she needed my computer, but she decided to just drop the class instead. I (sadly) expect this sort of flakiness when "it gets too hard" from a first time college enrollee, although ordering a book does not seem hard to me, I think there might have been other things going on that killed my sister's interest in the course. I do not expect a refusal to use a computer from someone who is closer to my own age and should have learned by now that "nothing" gets done unless you do it yourself, and one should gratefully accept help whatever the form.
Also, I don't know that BeagleMommy could promise anything on behalf of the school; student being locked out of a class or financially penalized because she wouldn't/couldn't figure out the system is pretty standard.