Thank you to everyone who participated and sent us questions during the Campus Update sessions. We have compiled the answers for these queries below. If you have any questions not covered in the topics below. Please do not hesitate to get in touch with us or see us during our next round of Information Sessions in schools.
The project team has been involved in a collaborative re-planning exercise with Ellucian for a clear understanding of the solution to be delivered at 'Go-Live' and subsequent 'Move and Improve' phases. The revised implementation plan was presented at the April Steering Committee meeting and the final decision has been to follow a similar release plan to that which we had established for 2019, but moved back by one year. See the details in the revised timeline.
Would the authentication be the same as the Western account?
As part of the implementation of the new SMS we are introducing an industry standard identity management system (an Ellucian variant of “WSO2 Identity Server”, https://wso2.com/library/articles/2017/08/what-is-wso2-identity-server/). This will enable Western to move towards a comprehensive single sign on (SSO) setup, supporting as many applications as possible.
The main challenge of implementing single-sign-on comes from the existing technology much of which does not support standards based SSO. Another difficulty is being able to incorporate the different SSO services available in cloud, such as Microsoft Office 365, Adobe Cloud etc. To achieve this the new Identity service needs to support Federated Identity Services, which WSO2 does.
Who can access and change what? How secure would it be, e.g. stolen password from staff forgetting to log out of a system and someone else getting a hold of it, what mitigations do we have in place?
Security is built into the systems to prevent unauthorised access. As these will be based on a staff / student login, the password management will follow the University’s policy on password security to ensure that passwords cannot be easily cracked to gain access to another person’s account.
Will there be audit capability to track who makes what decision, who can see the decision and process for deciding?
Yes. There is audit and extensive reporting capabilities. We will be implementing a workflow solution with analytics tracking to check where requests have been and how they have been actioned.
When will we know more about what Banner can do?
We are dissemintaing information as we learn more about the system. We are currently doing this through this website, updates through our newsletter and Quarterly Information sessions in each campus. If you've been invited to workshops or info sessions, it is in your best interest to attend.
Will there be enough notice given to workshop participants to plan for these activities?
Yes. Key stakeholders will be notified of upcoming workshops at least a fortnight before it runs to give teams ample time to decide on whom to send over & for how long.
How will this affect school based BAs? What will change in their day to day duties?
Looking up student records won’t be their primary function but they need to be aware of it. We’ll have dashboards, inquiry functions, better reporting and student profiles. CRM advise will help in quickly identifying & responding to students at risk as well as those eligible for awards.
How will this affect academics? What will change in their day to day duties?
Management of results and grades will be redesigned. There will be more academic self-service functions to help them see student progression, enrolment data, at risk students to name a few.
real-time delivery of academic advice through intuitive web interfaces;
minimised errors in taking up unnecessary units through consistent degree plans;
better access to one source of truth for student data
How does Degree Works improve curriculum management - what processes will it replace?
The curriculum management module will be able to:
provide intuitive mechanisms for defining complex degree requirements & completion rules
provide study plans (suggested sequence of subjects to take) which can be provided to students, which can
guide them into registering for their classes in one streamlined interface
let students and their advisors perform degree audits to help them monitor their progress towards their degree completion.
It is not merely a replacement but an enhancement to the user experience of students from several steps within their student journey from when they accept their offer up until graduation.
How will this affect Admissions?
Admissions process will:
work in conjunction with the Ellician recruitment solution to give a more streamlined and seamless admissions process.
Students interacting with UAC will not be affected,
Direct admission applications will be enhanced.
How will this affect Enrolments?
There will be:
a structured pathway for students;
Quick admit functionality for direct / manual enrolments
providing a directed student enrolment process;
better integration to Allocate +;
study plan functionality
streamlined & automated processing of prior learning where precedence exists
How will class registrations be managed?
After we go live, enrolment of units will happen in Banner, timetabling will be on Syllabus+ and classes can be selected from Allocate+. Business process will be re-designed to streamline the efforts for staff and the experience for students.
Bear in mind that we have a mandate to reduce satellite functions but we won’t do that if it will reduce the functionality for staff and the user experience for our students.
Is attendance tracking compulsory if courses have not done this before?
Attendance tracking is not compulsory, for some it is. However, the tool can be an integral part of our student retention strategy - by facilitating the tracking of student attendance, students who are not engaging with face-to-face teaching activities can be identified so appropriate retention based follow up can be initiated.
Are Change of Grades (COG) included in the Banner suite?
This is within the project's scope and is currently in its process design phase under grades management & results stream.
Is it really a student-centred system and will the students be more aware of their progression/progression paths?
YES. We’ll have self-service pages, 'What if' planning, degree audits, that would put more ownership on the student. Students can view their course/study plan online via self-service pages, understand what components they have completed and what options are available to allow them to complete their course. This will avoid surprises from students come graduation time.
How would the new system affect the student experience? For example from Adobe marketing platform jumping onto other systems as a student? Will there be a smooth transition between systems?
The aim will be to take this opportunity to improve the underlying architecture of IT systems to enable an improved student experience and position the University for future improvements.
More responses for information session queries are currently under review. As more information becomes available, this page will be updated. We will be sending news about this through our monthly newsletter. Contact us for further inquiries or to subscribe to the newsletter.