Course Data project

A JISC funded project aimed at improving course-related data at Sussex University

2. Course Data Synch and KIS



The Course data project includes  both the Course Data Synchronisation and KIS work packages which have been delivered under a programme of work for Stage 2.  Below is an update from those involved in the delivery this key work.

Course Data Synch – (Course and Module Design Tool)

For information, we have had some terminology changes since delivering this work that involves changing our terminology from Programmes and Courses to to Courses and Modules.  This meets with KIS and NSS standards.  I have gone through the text and changed the wording … and hope I’ve amended correctly.

The work here involved moving Course and Module data back from the Curriculum Planning tables back into the main oracle tables (these are our current integrated student system and course/module system).

The Course and module design tool was used to amend or create any course or module to run in the 2012 academic year, and in particular to certify that Course learning outcomes were fulfilled by a Module in that course and Module learning outcomes were tested by assessment.  This system supported the Insitutional Curriculum Review process, which has standardised the credit volume attributed to courses.  The main Course and Module management Oracle forms needed updating to support these changes, plus the change to the structure of the academic year.  A data migration working group met weekly to discuss and resolve any issues arising.

Oracle forms were developed to enable Academic Registry staff to undertake the migration, on a school and department basis as necessary, and tested thoroughly and bug fixed using data from the Law, Politics and Sociology School and Engineering and Informatics.  Once each school was ready their Course and module data within the design tool  was given a status of ‘Ready to Migrate’.  All existing modules were end dated on the database, then the School by School migration process created new versions of modules using the data from the Course and Module Design tool ready for the 2012/13 academic year.  The next step was to copy back the 2012 versions of modules to the 2011 and 2010 cohorts, so that all students are taking the same versions of modules with the correct number of credits.

Key Information Sets – KIS

A KIS Operational Group was created to provide co-ordination and management of the operational aspects to KIS preparation at Sussex, including oversight of management information, student systems, IT infrastructure and communications.  It has met twice so far and reports to the Strategic Data Reporting, Optimisation and Forecasting Group which is responsible for the strategic aspects of KIS.  As this is the first year of the KIS, and due to the Curriculum Review – Sussex will be presenting a estimate of key statistics rather reporting on existing data.

Database tables to hold the KIS data have been created and oracle forms have been updated to enable maintenance of the KIS data associated with courses and modules.  KIS types have been identified and scripts written to populate these attributes.  The process is being led by members of the Governance team who has worked with other stakeholders to identify how related data will be provided – for example Residences, Careers and Employability.  The XML schema for the delivery of the KIS data is available from HESA, who are collecting the data returns this year.

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