February 10, 2011
SIS Update #26
There is much to share in this update. These items are included in this update:
- User issues report, review process created
- Departments, faculty invited to submit issues
- Student fee-generated revenue reporting now available
- Fall term advance registration issues reduced significantly
- User issues update: Fall term final grade entry
- User issues update: Backlog in data entry at Registrar’s Office
- User issues update: Backlog on data entry of declaration forms
"User issues" report, review process created
Project leaders met in January with Joel Haack and Carlin Hageman to review issues that faculty and departments were reporting relative to their use of the Student Information System (SIS). Based on these discussions, we have created a new process for receiving and responding to user issues and keeping track of the status of each.
“User issues” are problems identified by individuals who use the SIS in the course of their work. User issues can be due to a limitation of the system, a lack of understanding of how to use the system, lack of needed access to portions of the system, and/or a setup in the system that is not producing the intended outcome. There might also be needs that have not been met because of a backlog in work.
You will find a summary of the currently-identified user issues here. For each, we have categorized the issue, given it a brief name, described it, described the outcome of our analysis of the issue, described a timeline (if appropriate), and given it a “status.”
You’ll note that a number of the issues have been resolved, and I will explain these (as they come up) in this and future SIS updates. (A total of five of them are addressed further in this update.) Thanks for your continued good work and understanding as we work through the remaining issues and needs.
Departments, faculty invited to submit issues
We will continue to add your issues to the new list as we come to know about them. Any faculty or staff person can submit an issue directly to the project team here. It would be helpful if you would look at the current list to see if a concern that you might have is already on the list before submitting what would be a duplicate.
Student fee-generated revenue reporting now available
As the Office of Business Operations’ staff continues to work on the transition to the new SIS system, revenue from fees charged to students during the fall and spring semesters will be available to view in your statement of account. A supporting report will be available soon to provide details of the charges posted.
There is a change in our business processes that will be important to departments relative to spending. In a change from past practice, departments will now see “revenue” in their accounts as soon as it is charged to the student. In the past, revenue was recorded only after the charge was paid (in other words, after the money was received). Account managers need to be aware that this “revenue” amount is not actual money that has been received; rather it is the “billed” amount. They will need to be aware of the “receivable” amount in object code 02005 indicating the amount due to the department. Departments will continue to monitor their cash balance and pending obligations to know how much cash is available.
Fall term advance registration issues reduced significantly
Based on student inquiries to the Registrar’s Office, the number of student issues related to advance registration was greatly reduced from the previous term. The four identified issues were:
1. Students not meeting all of the enrollment requirements (i.e., pre-requisites and co-requisites required for enrollment);
2. Students believing they are declared when they are actually prospective majors (this is a sub-set of number one);
3. Courses requiring instructor or department consent in order to enroll, but no class permission was entered for that student to enroll; and
4. [A distant fourth] Set-up errors were identified on (only) five courses.
We will continue to work to refine system setup, training, communication and processes to reduce the incidence of these. Thanks for your help in achieving such a dramatic improvement.
User issues update: Fall term final grade entry
There were three issues identified by faculty relative to the entry of fall term final grades. After reviewing, we believe we have resolutions that will address all three:
1. When submitting final grades, some faculty incorrectly entered their grades on the mid-term, rather than the final, grade roster – When final grade rosters are generated, the mid-term grade rosters will be removed to eliminate confusion.
2. When submitting final grades, some faculty did not select "approved" status – The system will be modified so the grade roster clearly displays the status of the grades. When faculty successfully submit their grades, a confirmation message will be displayed.
3. Faculty do not receive confirmation that their grades were submitted – The system will be modified so the grade roster clearly displays the status of the grades. When faculty successfully submit their grades, a confirmation message will be displayed.
User issues update: Backlog in data entry at Registrar’s Office
This is accurate. We are taking two approaches to resolve this. First, we have internally reallocated funding (within Student Affairs) to provide funding for an additional Record Analyst. The process of filling this position is underway. This will take the Record Analyst team from four to five. Second, we will continue to seek to refine processes that eliminate the need for manual data entry into the system. See the update below on “declaration of majors” as an example.
User issues update: Backlog on data entry of declaration forms
This is accurate, though much catching up has been accomplished in the last 30 days. We are currently reviewing a change in process with the academic departments that would remove the "pre" plan step for plans that have no entrance requirements to declare that major. Academic Advising is checking with departments for their views before we implement any change.
This will connect students to a major sooner, make it clearer for students, eliminate unnecessary steps for students, and reduce the volume of manual entry of declaration forms significantly. We would plan to implement necessary changes to the system setup (this would not require any modification of the system) so the change would be fully in place for next fall.