Ravensbourne Goes Live with SEAtS
“What made SEAtS so appealing was its ready-made, automated approach to student success. The idea of something that is easy for staff and students to use and doesn’t take up too much time, it is so easy for students to just tap in on a reader at the start of class than a member of staff having to call out a register. This gives more time for teaching and hopefully has a positive impact on the student experience.”
Adam Campbell, Quality Officer Ravensbourne
Ravensbourne is constantly looking for ways to innovate and enhance the student experiences and outcomes. Ravensbourne identified the need to find a suitable attendance monitoring solution to aid this. Having used various manual attendance monitoring systems in the past that were inconsistent and inaccurate in recording data, a change was needed.
The Vendor Selection Process
Adam and the team at Ravensbourne wanted a solution that could deploy fast, evolve and grow with the business; this eliminated many vendors when combined the need for a solution that would be easy to use and understand. That way Students and Academic Staff would find it easy to use. The Crown Commercial Service’s G-Cloud procurement framework helped the decision-making process by identifying quickly a short-list of likely vendors. Ravensbourne selected SEAtS as it had the features and track record to handle deploying fast and with ease of transition.
The Implementation Process
Post vendor selection, Adam and the team at Ravensbourne faced the challenge of managing time, scope and the implementation of a new timetabling system. SEAtS and Ravensbourne personnel worked as a unified project team to map out and deliver key project milestones. SEAtS online project methodology and the portal was used to make sure deadlines and dates stayed on track.
Student attendance monitoring was of valuable importance for the Ravensbourne team, they wanted a top shelf ready to use system to capture their attendance levels. They also wished to utilise early warning alerts automatically sent out to those students who are at-risk or failing. The solution needed to:
- Improve achievement by increasing student attendance
- Improve retention by strengthening engagement through improved pastoral care, reducing the risk of students leaving their courses
- Reduce administrative overhead of recording, monitoring and following up on attendance, with minimum disruption to the student and lecture in the classroom
- Support compliance for monitoring student attendance for UKVI for International students in a seamless and integrated way for all students
- Provide a better picture of room utilisation for timetable optimisation for the facilities and scheduling teams, and for senior management to enable strategic investment planning.
Ravensbourne has officially gone live in January 2018. Speaking about this Adam Campbell said:
“As someone who is not directly involved in teaching, I did not have a great understanding of what was happening so inconsistently in the institution in terms of attendance monitoring. I think it has been insightful from that point of view. To see particularly our further education courses embracing it very quickly is very promising.”
The system provides a view of students who are expected in every class and then in real-time shows them swiping in and marked as “attended”. This removes the need to take local class registers. Students who are late are marked as such. Those who do not attend are shown as “absent”. Students who attend a session that they are not timetabled to attend are shown as “unexpected”. Reports are available to report on and monitor attendance by student, module, and programme. Automated alerts are sent to students who fail to attend a predetermined number of sessions.
Key Benefits for Ravensbourne:
According to the Ravensbourne team, deploying the SEAtS system has delivered the following key benefits:
- Better academic performance due to comprehensive engagement and attendance tracking for students
- Improved student retention due to early warning of “at-risk” students which leads to strengthening pastoral care
- Formal compliance reporting processes for Tier 4 Visa and Immigration.
Download the official press release here…
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