Student Information Systems have many rules and requirements with regards to creating and updating objects. As such, when Coursedog scheduling updates (section data primarily) are merged with the SIS through our integrations certain rules must be abided in order for data to be accepted; otherwise, a merge error or other downstream issues may occur.
Some SIS requirements are built into our platform by default, but for those that are not the Coursedog team is committed to documenting all known SIS specific requirements and sharing those with our partners to ensure best practice set-up of system rules, merge settings, section template etc. in our platform to avoid any issues down the line.
Please find below some recommended Configurations and Rules for Peoplesoft schools we believe will ensure a smoother integration for your institution going forward.
Required Section Rules (and associated Section Template Fields)
The "Required" field in Section Rules settings can be used to specify if the rule must be resolved before a user can attempt to save a section or submit a section change request for that section, thus ensuring that scheduling errors are caught in real-time and resolved before they ever become an issue with the integration.
For a refresher on setting up Section Rules see our Rules article here.
Pre-delivered - Rule exists in the platform by default; Simply enable and mark as required
- 'Credit Range Conflict' (pre-delivered) - triggered when a section is assigned a specific amount of fixed credit hours that is outside of the allowed range defined at the parent course level.
- ‘Double Booked Room’ (pre-delivered) - You can't assign a room that is already assigned to a section at the time selected. Set 'On Failure' to 'Warning' and make the rule required to avoid merge errors. Note that double booked room conflicts will be ignored for sections that have a "same room" relationship.
- 'Relationship Conflict'
When a POST is executed updating the classroom of a section that is part of a combined section group, the classrooms of all other sections in the group will also be updated. However, if the skpMtgPtn field is checked, this will not occur.
- In Coursedog, updating the classroom assignment of a section which is part of a same-room Relationship may flag either a warning or an error that states the relationship is being violated (this is done in order to preserve the 'same-room' condition of said relationship).
- Note: Coursedog will NOT automatically update classroom assignments for all sections in the Relationship (as PS sometimes does).In order for this earning/error to be flagged, users must configure the Relationship Conflict pre-delivered Section Rule accordingly.
Custom - Rule needs to be created as a custom rule within the Section Rules module
Preferred Room Capacity Is Not Zero (custom) - When creating and/or updating sections, Peoplesoft will not let Preferred Room Capacity be empty or zero. First, Preferred Room Capacity must be an existing field in the Section Template. Custom Rule/Filter: Where ‘Preferred Room Capacity’ ‘Is’ ‘0’ ‘Or’ ‘‘Preferred Room Capacity’ ‘Is’ ‘Empty’.
Start and End Times (custom)- Schedulers need to ensure that Meeting "End Times" are always greater than Meeting "Start Times." Recommend to use filter to where ‘Meeting Times’ ‘Is NOT’ ‘Empty’ and ‘Start Time’ ‘Is Always Before’ ‘End Time’.
- Note: users will see the warning be triggered when meeting patterns have not been added yet
- Note: enforcing the use of Standard Meeting Patterns (via Rules > Section Rules > Non Standard Meeting Pattern rule set to 'Warning' and/or 'Required Rule') may also decrease the likelihood of this start/end time rule violation occurring
- Start and End Dates(custom)- Schedulers need to ensure that Section "Start Date" come before the "End Date". If the section start date falls after the end date then an error will be returned from Peoplesoft. Recommend to use filter to where ‘Start Date’ ‘Is After’ ‘End Date’.
Auto Enroll 1 & 2 Must Be Different (custom)- Each section in Peoplesoft has an Auto Enroll 1 & Auto Enroll 2 field. If these fields are filled out and the same value, Peoplesoft will reject any updates.
Create a Custom Rule (Note that Auto Enroll Section #1 and Auto Enroll Section #2 must be existing fields in the Section Template before this Rule can be crafted).
Associated Class Cannot Be Blank Or Zero (custom) - The Associated Class number must be a non zero number, passed on all create/update operations. Note that Associated Class must be an existing field in the Section Template) before the Custom Rule (see below) can be created.
Prim Instr Section Must Exist - If a user sets the "Prim Instr section" to a value that does not exist (i.e. a section that is not in Peoplesoft) an error will return. Assuming that Prim Instr Section always = Section Number the custom rule/filter: where ‘Prim Instr Section’ Is Not’ ‘Section Number’
- : The above rule cannot prevent errors on new section creation where the primary instr section is the section being created.
Other Known Peoplesoft Merge Best Practices
- Part Time Instructors Cannot Be Assigned to Full Time Sections
- If an instructor is part time, the job record associated with a section must also be part time. Otherwise peoplesoft will return an error like this:
- There is currently not a way to enforce this in the platform via Rules, nor in the Section Template, however users do have the ability to filter by instructor type (Part Time, Adjunct, etc.) in the Section Editor when selecting an Instructor. Users should be trained to filter by instructor type where appropriate.
Sections Cannot be Combined
- If two sections cannot be combined, it is likely that they do not have the same meeting patterns and room assignments which would result in a Peoplesoft error, however, there is a bug in Peoplesoft where it sometimes returns an error even if two sections have the exact same meeting pattern and room assignment. If this occurs then remove both meeting patterns from the sections in Coursedog, create the relationship, then try to add the meeting patterns back in.
Sections numbers must be unique
- Section Numbers must be unique for each course, if data in SIS has duplicate section numbers, these duplicate sections will not be brought in to Coursedog.
Relationships (Combined Sections) Must Have Same Instructor
- Relationships set as "Same Time Same Day Same Room" relationships must also have the same instructor. Otherwise Peoplesoft will return an error.
- There is currently not a way to enforce this in the platform via Rules, nor in the Section Template. Users must be trained to ensure selection of same Instructor for these kinds of relationships.
- Relationships Meeting Patterns
- PeopleSoft propagates the meeting data of one section to another section(s) when creating a Relationship / Combined Sections. In order to prevent Meeting Patterns from being wiped out the relationship should be created when both sections do not have Meeting Patterns OR the section(s) have the same Meeting Pattern data.