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Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Spring 2017 final exam schedule available for review

The spring 2017 final exam schedule for general purpose classrooms is now available for review in Astra Schedule. Please forward room locations to instructors to ensure they know the location of their final exam.

Be sure to check your department's classes for accuracy. Email the Scheduling Unit at ocmsched@umn.edu as soon as possible if you notice any of the following:
  • An exam scheduled for a class that does not require a room 
  • An exam missing for a class that should have had one scheduled
  • An exam scheduled at a time or place you did not expect
To review your department's final exams, please follow the steps below:
  1. Sign into Astra Schedule with your University internet ID and password in the upper right-hand corner of the screen.
  2. Click on the “Academics” tab located in the top navigation menu.
  3. Click on the “Sections” link at the top of the page.
  4. Update the filters in the left column as follows:
    1. Is Exam = Yes
    2. Term = Spring 2017
    3. Subject = Select the subject(s) you schedule
    4. Campus = Mpls/St Paul
  5. Click “Search” at the bottom of the filter column.
  6. To save your filter selections for future use, click on the save button next to the “Search” button at the bottom of the filter column on the left.
  7. Export the list to Excel by using the icon located in the middle of the bottom of the page.
Common exam room assignments are available to review separately in this Google sheet.

Want a few extra tips and tricks for getting around in Astra Academics? Check out the resources available on ASR’s system support page under Astra Schedule. Still have questions on how to review your final exams? Contact ocmsched@umn.edu.

Final exam policy resources:

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Final exam scheduling for spring 2017 (1173)

Standard final exams have been scheduled for spring 2017 (1173). The OCM Scheduling Unit is currently working on scheduling common exams and special requests submitted through ASR final exam change request form. While OCM does its best to accommodate special requests, there is always a possibility that your request may not be able to be fulfilled.

After all final exams have been scheduled, detailed instructions for how to review exam room assignments will be sent to schedulers through the Scheduling Update newsletter to verify for their department.

Space is very tight this final exam period. Please continue to notify Scheduling if a spring 2017 course section will not require a general purpose classroom during finals week. Email ocmsched@umn.edu with the subject line “Spring 2017 Final Exam” and the designator/section number(s) in the text.

Final exam schedule and regulations are posted on the Academic Support Resources site.

OCM website redesign

We are in the process of redesigning the Office of Classroom Management website (classroom.umn.edu), with the intention of launching the new site by late fall 2017. As users of the current OCM site, we need your help. Here’s what you can do:
  • Watch for an email invitation to participate in an online activity known as a “card sort.” The activity will give you the opportunity to provide input on how content will appear on our new
  • Participate in an in-person website usability testing session. If this interests you, please submit your contact information. We will reach out at a later date to share more information.

MyU and PeopleSoft outage

On Saturday and Sunday, April 1-2, 2017, an upgrade to the PeopleSoft development platform, PeopleTools, will occur. While the upgrade work is underway, MyU and PeopleSoft applications will be unavailable.

Specific impacts to note:
  • MyU (and dependent applications)
  • PeopleSoft (and dependent applications)
  • ServiceNow
  • APAS
  • Grad Planner
Aside from downtime during the weekend, no significant impact for end users is expected, and no action is required as a result of this upgrade. Access to Moodle courses and University email will not be affected.

The upgrade ensures that our PeopleSoft systems remain stable and secure, and we retain vendor support. We encourage you to mark your calendars for the upgrade weekend so that you can plan around the service outage accordingly. During the weekend of April 1-2, updates will be available on the University’s Service Status page.

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Class schedule data from the PeopleSoft Upgrade internal audit

Sue Van Voorhis, Associate Vice Provost Academic Support Resources and University Registrar, presented the key findings from an internal audit of the 2015 PeopleSoft Upgrade at the February 2017 Registrar’s Advisory Committee (RAC) meeting. The scope of the audit included administration (information and communication), system functionality (evaluating support for users), and data integrity (data accuracy and access rights). The audit also included soliciting community feedback through surveys to “faculty go-tos” and advisors. Five advisors were interviewed.

Sue reminded the group that the charge of the Upgrade was to implement delivered functionality as much as possible. As a result, the Campus Solutions effort removed 53% of customizations. Sue also shared data on the ongoing work related to Campus Solutions work. Almost half of that work is unplanned (e.g., bug fixes, responding to changes to regulations).

The conclusions of the audit were that the system is doing its job, but some users are frustrated. Class schedule data entry errors were highlighted, noting that the 300+ system-wide Collaborative Class Scheduling (CCS) users impact the quality of data. Specific things of note:
  • 725 of 1,101 (65%) graduate students were entered as Primary Instructor instead of Teaching Assistant
  • 2,234 of 7,521 (30%) classes with no instructor listed
  • Meeting patterns set up incorrectly (see the UPK on meeting pattern set up)
If you’re interested in learning more about the audit, review Sue’s internal audit presentation.

Make final changes before registration starts

It is imperative to make final changes to summer 2017 and fall 2017 classes prior to registration. Changes after registration has occurred may have a detrimental effect on students. For degree-seeking students, summer 2017 registration opens April 11, and fall 2017 registration opens April 13.

Submit the following changes directly through ECAS:
  • Credit changes
  • Grading base changes of any kind
  • Drop consent required
  • Career changes
  • Repeat allowance updates
  • Component changes
  • Adding topics courses
To make the following change, email ocmsched@umn.edu:
  • Change the number of credits for which a class is offered, from a variable number to a set number within the range
For classes that are not planned to be offered, cancellations should be made directly in CCS during CCS Open Initial Build. If a cancellation needs to occur after students have enrolled, email ocmsched@umn.edu. ASR formally reviews class changes made post-enrollment. Many changes are not able to be accommodated after students are enrolled.

Verify instructor information

Many classes are on the schedule without an instructor listed. Please input instructor information directly into CCS with accurate role and access type for spring (1173), summer (1175) and fall (1179). This practice ensures instructors will be able to access their online grade rosters at the end of the semester and assists students with complete information when registering for classes. Additionally, please verify all of your spring (1173), summer (1175) and fall (1179) classes have the correct instructor assigned.

OCM Year in Review

The OCM Year in Review is an account of how well we have met our charge during the past year. It is also an opportunity to highlight trends that will impact decisions and services in the Office of Classroom Management throughout the coming years.