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staffs XCRI. Peter Moss ([email protected]) Staffordshire University. Approach. Mapping Structured Interviews Internal aggregation using existing resources Existing faculty/school systems/content CMS (Tridion R5) Student Records (TheSIS Plus) Production of XCRI-CAP feed

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Peter Moss ([email protected])

Staffordshire University

  • Mapping
  • Structured Interviews
  • Internal aggregation using existing resources
    • Existing faculty/school systems/content
    • CMS (Tridion R5)
    • Student Records (TheSIS Plus)
  • Production of XCRI-CAP feed
  • Testing with aggregator
  • Interview were generally successful
    • …but difficult to arrange!
  • Getting to ‘the big picture’ was difficult
  • Separating perception of the process from reality was challenging!
  • Very disjointed and inconstant process
  • Overreliance on manual processes throughout
  • Comprehensive QA underpins the processes, but creates complex workflows
  • Lots of less than satisfied stakeholders!
  • Some work underway to address these problems already
  • CMS content not accessible to us
    • Unfortunately due to restructure/redesign of website the team did not have time to supply us with a ‘feed’ which we could use
  • No other ‘repository’ of course advertising material available to the team
  • Student records system only contains current and historic courses
  • No ‘production’ quality feed was going to be possible 
  • To carry out a small scale development to synthesise an XCRI-CAP feed
  • This development would ..
    • Not focus on being a technically ‘brilliant’ solution (neither the time nor necessity)
    • Identify potentially problematic areas of the schema
    • Generate some suggestions/comments about the general implementation experience
  • The following code packages were produced
    • simpleXcriGen
      • Simple Java model of XCRI-CAP document
      • Great as a learning exercise and as a ‘thought provoker’
      • Disclaimer: Not suitable for production environment
      • Disclaimer: No … really – don’t do it!
    • staffsXCRISyntheticCatalogGen
      • Uses simpleXcriGen, JDBC + existing code
      • Outputs XCRI-CAP for SU containing current awards – but has no real ‘consumer’ content available
      • Shows how a simple internal aggregation could operate
  • Resulting feeds hosted on web server
  • Got us a feed, sort of!
  • Feed lacked any real ‘consumer’ content but was structurally valid
  • This turned into a number of feeds
    • mainly performance reasons for this
    • aggregator did not seem to load a multi-provider document when it was tried
  • Registered with the
  • Raised a few questions and suggestions ….
suggestions 1 2
Suggestions (1/2)
  • Internal Recommendations
    • Adopt a more holistic approach to course data management
    • Existing workflow automation solutions need to be extended and adapted
    • Make use of HIVE repository for outputs
    • Actions already underway
      • Recommending that XCRI-CAP output be considered as a requirement (alongside web, print, etc)
suggestions 2 2
Suggestions (2/2)
  • Suite of ‘reference’ documents?
  • Identifiers
    • Is a resolvable ID necessary?
  • Vocabularies/Extensions
    • Course description type for ‘testimonials’/personal statements
    • Consistency of levels, subjects, etc
  • Distance learning courses and geolocation
    • Search equality?
    • Presentations with support for “home based” learning venue?
  • Update models
    • Guidance for implementation teams on approaches to update patterns
  • Entry requirements
    • Ability for ‘non-typical’ requirements (such as accredited experience) to be formally recorded, especially of interest for widening participation initiatives
  • Project has helped to consolidate lots of internal problems, which are now starting to be addressed
  • We have made some, hopefully, useful suggestions to the XCRI project
  • Project team intends to continue to monitor and, where possible, participate in further development and promote production of XCRI-CAP from SU