Student Systems FAQs

These FAQ's are under constand review and amendment. Please contact the Student Systems Support Centre if the FAQ's do not answer a query you have about student systems.

ON-COURSE APPLICATION FAQs

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GSO forms are moving online, and Hilary term 2020 will see the launch of the first ten on-course applications in eVision.  Students will access the forms via Student Self Service, with links also provided from the GSO forms website. The online applications will replace paper-based Graduate (GSO) forms and will use a new digitised approval / workflow process. 

The new process will be more user-friendly and students will be able to submit their applications and check on progress via Student Self Service, from any location with internet access.  It will also provide a more secure way for academic staff to record decisions and for administrative staff to track the progress of all on-course applications relevant to them, because all applications will be stored in one place.  
These changes should mean that fewer applications will need to be referred back to the student because the system will:

  • Pre-populate some data (e.g. student name, number and college) 
  • Validate data entered by the student, where possible
  • Ensure that information is added to mandatory fields before the application is submitted 
  • Student begins the application
  • Supervisor reviews the application (except the of GSO.29 Notification of Withdrawal) and if applicable the student’s other supervisors will have read access to their application. In certain Divisions, where a student is co-supervised, a Lead Supervisor will be identified by the student’s department to review the application, in others, the student will select the relevant supervisor from a dropdown list
  • College team reviews the application, except for GSO.3 / GSO.27, Appointment of Examiners (the college will be alerted when the student submits this application so any medical information can be communicated to the examiners via the Proctors, and a notification will be sent when a decision is reached on the application) and GSO.3c, Dispensation from Consultation of Thesis
  • A Departmental Reviewer reviews the application, and makes a decision based on all feedback
  • Graduate Administrators can action applications as authorised by the Departmental Reviewer and reassign applications for review (e.g. when a supervisor is on leave)
  • Super Users [GSAs] have the same access as the Graduate Administrator but in addition will: 
    • Manage items that require Education Committee or Proctors approval (a process that will continue to take place outside of eVision)
    • Update eVision with the decision where relevant
    • Send emails advising the student of the outcome
    • In the case of Medical Sciences, assign applications to a Divisional Board member for review 
  • A small number of academic staff in Medical Sciences only will have access to a Board Approval tab.

Details of the features that each role will have access to within eVision or Student Self Service can be found on the On Course Applications Notification Workflow document.

The first on-course applications will be launched at the start of the Hilary Term 2020.

A number of applications will be available at launch, which are below:

  • GSO.2b: Defer Transfer of Status
  • GSO.3: Appointment of examiners
  • GSO.3c: Dispensation from consultation of the thesis
  • GSO.4: Change of mode of study
  • GSO.6: Change of title
  • GSO.8: Dispensation from residence
  • GSO.14b: Defer Confirmation of Status
  • GSO.15: Extension of time
  • GSO.27: Appointment of examiners - Law 
  • GSO.29: Withdrawal

Why aren’t all applications being launched at the same time?

These applications provide an opportunity to trial the online process to ensure that it works well and meets the needs of end-users, whilst also providing useful insight into what can be improved and enhanced. Feedback will be sought from students and staff before plans are finalised and additional forms moved online. A number of policy changes are planned, and once approved by the Education Committee, more informed decisions can be made. Also further funding will need to be sought so the remaining forms can be moved across to on-course applications.

Students, academics and administrative staff will access on-course applications using an updated web link on the Graduate (GSO) forms webpage, or in the My Student Record section of Student Self Service for students, or in the Student Record section of eVision for staff.

The relevant academic and administrative staff will be updated by email in advance of the changes, and students will also receive information. Automated email notifications and reminders will point students and staff to Student Self Service / eVision.

Details of the Project Board and Working Group membership are available on the project governance webpage, and numerous user groups - involving representatives from departments, divisions and colleges, have taken place.

 

Colleges

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Apart from accessing your students’ on-course applications via eVision, some changes to policy have been agreed over the last couple of years, and are summarised here:

  • GSO.3 / GSO.27 Appointment of Examiners no longer requires review by colleges: The Graduate Committee of Conference of Colleges agreed that colleges would not be involved in the review process for this application, because it was extremely unlikely that a college would not support such an application. Instead, the college team will receive notifications when the application is submitted so that any medical information can be communicated to the examiners via the Proctors, and when the application is complete and a decision is reached. 
  • GSO.2b Deferral of Transfer of Status and GSO.14b Deferral of Confirmation of Status will require review by colleges. The Graduate Committee of Conference of Colleges agreed that college involvement in the review process for these applications should be formalised and added to the Examination Regulations.

This is a single role that academics and administrative staff in colleges will have access to, so a local agreement will need to be put in place as to how you manage this, but there is no limit on team size.

Colleges can have as many reviewers as they want. They just need to be aware that every reviewer will be able to approve all applications.

Information for students

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They will have to make a paper-based application. A paper-based version of the relevant form will remain available on the GSO forms website, for example, form GSO3c Dispensation from consultation of the thesis, for leavers who no longer have single sign-on access.

Yes and it will be pre-populated in all applications .

The notification emails sent as part of the OCA workflow are no-reply emails. After replying to a notification email, the student will be notified that the email was not was not delivered.

The dispensation from statutory residence form should be used by full-time students only. This form is not applicable to part-time students.

Emails might go into a student’s spam folder. Students should check their Junk Inbox and add the 'no-reply' address to the 'safe list'. If you continue to experience problems, please contact the IT Service Desk.

Email notifications will be sent to all the people have been set up as reviewers.

Sensitive information

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No, only students will be able to upload information in support of their application. Any other materials will be managed outside of the system.

Supervisors

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The graduate administrator/super user can override the lead supervisor (if specified). The student dashboard also shows contact details for those people the student can contact for help.

Only one supervisor can formally review an application, but co-supervisors will have read-only access and should discuss applications with the supervisory team offline.

A supervisor with read-only access to an application is not part of the review process but they will be able to view the application when submitted. They will receive an automated notification containing a link to eVision. If a read-only supervisor has something to contribute to the application, they should contact the supervisory team outside the system.

Yes, along with a Departmental Reviewer or super user.

Yes, additional information can be uploaded by the student, and those with access will be:

a) Each of the student’s current supervisors

b) College reviewers (typically the Senior Tutor, Tutor for Graduates and college administrators)

c) Department Reviewers (typically the DGS or equivalent)

d) Graduate Administrators

e) For Medical Sciences only, appropriate Board members

f) If applicable, Education Policy Support or the Proctors’ Office

Mistakes, referring back, withdrawals and audit history applications

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The applications reviewing process is as follows:

  1. Students
  2. Supervisor
  3. College (not all the applications)
  4. Department Reviewer 
  5. Super User

Anyone can refer back to any person in the process with the exception of MSB that can only refer back to the Super User.

Anyone reviewing the application can refer the application back to the student, who can then edit and update the application.

The application will appear in the ‘To action’ tab (for students, this will be called the Additional Action Required tab), and an automated email notification will alert the user to this change.

Yes, at any point until it is completed. The application will then be removed from the dashboards of everyone in the review process. The student could then work on a new application if necessary.

A summary will be added to the students’ guidance notes.

Supervisor, College, Departmental Reviewer, and Graduate Administrator and Super Users can click on the ‘i’ for information icon (which can be found alongside the application within the dashboard, usually on the right-hand side) which reveals an 'audit history' table, showing who actioned an application, the action performed and when it occurred.

Yes, the audit function shows the name and system role of the person who carried out each action in the system at that time.

If the supervisor or Department Reviewer changes then the application will progress through each stage as normal.  The new supervisor or Department Reviewer will receive any notification emails.  If the application is referred back after the change, it will be referred back to the new supervisor or Department Reviewer.

Deferral applications

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It will be possible to submit the application in the term following the relevant milestone deadline. If a later application is required the student should contact their graduate administrator in the first instance.

Where students have moved from full-time to part-time study, or vice versa, deadlines for milestones and maximum submission may need to be updated manually by a super user, as the system will not be able to calculate the correct pro rata dates. 

Dashboards

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The role column indicates the role allocated to you as you review applications. For example, you may have both the role of Departmental Reviewer and Supervisor (though not for the same student). You may choose to filter the applications in your dashboard to show only the students you are supervising for example.

Applications will be available in eVision for six years after the student completes their studies, in line with data protection.

You will be able to search and view the application. Tabs in the dashboard are there to help you manage large quantities of notifications.

Yes, a printable PDF will be available which includes actions taken within the workflow to that point.

Miscellaneous

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The Department Reviewer – as the final approver - makes the final decision, and will need to consider input from various people in the review process as the application continues through the whole review process.

  • For requests falling outside the regulations – and so needing dispensation (see the regulations for details) - the arbiter is the Education Committee
    • For restriction of access at viva, the arbiter is the Proctors, though this is a sub-application of the main Appointment of Examiners application
  • For MSD, in all other cases, the arbiter is the MSD Board.
  • For the other divisions, in all other cases, the arbiter is the Department Reviewer.

Yes, a printable PDF will be available which includes actions taken within the workflow to that point.

When a Super User or System Administrator is in the Email Preview, there is a ‘Download application’ link at the top so they can view or check the application details without having to close the email preview.  

Department Reviewers can amend examiner details before approving an application for appointment of examiners – however, if they do not support an application for a time-specific viva or a restricted access viva, they should refer the application back to the student with reasons, rather than rejecting the application. 

If a department Graduate Administrator or Super User is receiving too many automated emails they should ask their system administrator to turn off their e-mail notifications. 

Department Reviewer rankings are primarily set-up at the specialism level or departmental levels, although a small number will be set up at the individual student level, these are predominantly in the Medical Sciences Division. 
System administrators have the functionality to update Department Reviewers and it is possible to assign a Department Reviewer at the student, specialism, programme or departmental level.
In terms of prioritisation, the system will work on a hierarchical scheme based on both the level of granularity (i.e. student – department) and ranking (i.e. 1-3) and as shown in the following table:

  Rank Relationship Level
High 1 Student
  2 Student
  3 Student
  1 Specialism
  2 Specialism
  3 Specialism
  1 Programme
  2 Programme
  3 Programme
  1 Department
  2 Department
Low 3 Department

 

When updating a Department Reviewer, it is important to check the existing reviewers to ensure the new reviewer has the correct prioritisation. For example, if a new DGS is appointed who is responsible for the whole department, whilst it will be quickest to enter them at Department level rank 1, any reviewer at the level of student, specialism or programme would still have a higher priority, and for the DGS to be prioritised they must be set up at the same level with a higher rank.  

Example:

Department Programme Specialism Reviewer 1 Reviewer 2 Reviewer 3
Polar Studies MSc in Arctic Studies MSc in Arctic Studies Dr Smith Dr Jones Dr Pond
Polar Studies MSc in Antarctic Studies MSc in Antarctic Studies Dr Smith Prof Ali Dr Pond

 

Dr Smith is the DGS for Polar Studies, Dr Pond is Head of Department, and Dr Jones and Prof Ali are the Course Directors.

Following the initial set-up the prioritisation would be:
MSc Arctic Studies: Dr Smith Specialism 1, Dr Jones Specialism 2, Dr Pond Specialism 3
MSc Antarctic Studies: Dr Smith Specialism 1, Prof Ali Specialism 2, Dr Pond Specialism 3

If the DGS changes from Dr Smith to Prof Begg, the quickest way to enter this would be to delete Dr Smith for each specialism (at which point the system will give the option to re-rank the other reviewers at the specialism level) and then set Prof Begg as Department rank 1. 

However, this would yield the following prioritisation:
MSc Arctic Studies: Dr Jones Specialism 1, Dr Pond Specialism 2, Prof Begg Dept 1
MSc Antarctic Studies: Prof Ali Specialism 1, Dr Pond Specialism 2, Prof Begg Dept 1

For the prioritisation to work therefore, the reviewers must be ordered first by level of granularity and second by ranking. It is not possible therefore to set up an individual with Dept level access to have first priority, if one of the other two reviewers will be set up at lower granularity i.e. you cannot set a DGS at department level if you want to have Course Directors as second or third priority where their relationship is with the programme or specialism. 

It would be possible however to use the department level if all three reviewers are using that level of access. 

Student level access will always be first priority, over any other relationship, and will supersede specialism, programme and department relationships.  

 

GENERAL eVision FAQs

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The Webauth page at https://webauth.ox.ac.uk/reset_password allows you to change your Oxford Username password.

There may be a number of reasons you can't get past the Webauth Verify Personal Details screen. Further information and guidance is available on the IT services website.

The SSSC's Mailing List Usage Statement is now available on the Student System website. All eVision users with active access are automatically included in the mailing lists and membership of the mailing lists is mandatory. Information on when and why you may occasionally be contacted via email is on the Mailing List Policy webpage.

Find the Training Course you are interested in attending and book a date via CoSy. Please contact the Student Systems Training to enquire about booking onto a training course on someone elses behalf. 

eVision is the web view of the SITS:Vision student records system, which will be used by the majority of academic and administrative colleagues and by students (called ‘Student Self Service’).

SITS:Vision is the underlying application which will mainly be used by central teams in the Academic Administration Division.

Firefox is the recommended web browser for accessing eVision, however eVision is compatible with all the latest versions of major browsers including Chrome and Safari.

Please note that although eVision will run on Internet Explorer v11 (IE) Microsoft have already indicated that IE will eventually be replaced by Edge so it is recommended that you look at using alternative browsers.

During the SITS:Vision 9.9 upgrade it will not be possible to access eVision from 5pm Friday 15th May until 9am Monday 18th May. In the interim, access to Emergency Contact details will be provided via the eVision Support (SUPP) environment. SUPP is a secure environment that normally is only accessible by Student Systems Support teams. SUPP will only be made available to all staff who have been granted access to the “Emergency Contact” role in eVision PRIOR TO 5pm Wednesday 13 May 2020.

How to access SUPP

To access Emergency Contact Details in SUPP you will need to have first setup a Remote Access Account and have setup a Virtual Private Network (VPN).

A Remote Access account can be setup by anyone who already has an active Single Sign On (SSO) account. A VPN can be setup by downloading Cisco AnyConnect Client to your desktop. For further details and support for setting up Remote Access and VPN please visit the IT Services website.

Once you have logged into VPN via Cisco AnyConnect you can access the SUPP environment (http://evision-supp.ox.ac.uk) using your normal SSO and password. Please note that your access to SUPP will only last for the duration of the upgrade.

Important information about using SUPP

Please could you also note the following:

  1. The data in SUPP will be a copy of the data from 5pm on Wednesday 13 May – i.e. any changes made to data held in Live between that date and the upgrade will not be reflected in the Support Environment.
  2. DO NOT TRY TO MAKE ANY CHANGES TO DATA IN THE SUPP ENVIRONMENT. Although, technically speaking, it will appear that you can make changes to data, these changes will not be copied back to the Live environment and will be overwritten immediately after the upgrade.
  3. We can only guarantee that the Emergency Contact functionality will work correctly. You may be able to access other functions although we are aware that certain parts may not work.
  4. Student emails will not be available in the system although the email addresses for emergency contacts will be available. This is to prevent any emails to students being accidentally sent by some of the batch jobs and triggers in SITS.
  5. We will not be able to grant access to SUPP for any users who do not have the Emergency Contact role prior to 5pm on Wed 13 May.
  6. Our priority running up to and over the weekend is to ensure that the SITS upgrade is carried out successfully so that we have a fully working system on the Monday. For this reason, if there are any other issues with SUPP then it is unlikely that we will be able to spare any time to resolve these.
GSR FAQs

If you are looking for information about the Graduate Supervision Reporting (GSR) FAQ's, please see the GSR FAQs page. 

INFORMATION CUSTODIAN FAQs

General

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Each department and college of the collegiate University who uses student systems will nominate an Information Custodian (and deputy) who is responsible for ensuring that student systems data is managed in accordance with the Data Privacy and Information Security policies and guidelines. They will need to ensure that staff with access to their data only have access to student systems data that is pertinent to their job role(s), and that sensitive data is only accessed by appropriate individuals.

A complete role description can be found on the Information Custodian webpage.

It would help your Information Custodian if you told them your Single Sign On (SSO) identification and the type of administrative task you wish to complete. Sometimes, it can really help if you know of another member of staff within your college/department/faculty/division who has the type of access you need. Your Information Custodian can check their access and give the same to you.

To appoint a new, or amend an existing, Information Custodian - the Head of the affiliation (e.g. Head of Department, Head of House etc.) must contact the Student Systems Support Centre with details of the change. The following details must be included: Full name of person to be appointed/removed as Custodian; affiliation; dates with effect from and to; email address of person to be appointed/removed as Custodian.

It may be that you are not properly designated as an Information Custodian in SITS:Vision. Please contact the Support Centre to help resolve this issue.

Access can be granted by going to the 'Access and Support' menu in eVision and choosing the 'Add or remove specific eVision access' link. 

The access you have added access that requires either mandatory training or requires further authorisation. If training is required, the staff member will be contacted by Student Systems Training to arrange training. After successful completion of training, the access will become active. If further authorisation is required, a request is immediately sent to the authoriser (typically a member of staff in AAD central administration team(s)) to authorise the access. You and the member of staff will receive an email notification as soon as the access has been approved and it will be active immediately. This authorisation is usually completed within one working day. 

Your Information Custodian may have added access that requires either mandatory training or requires further authorisation. If training is required, you will be contacted by Student Systems Training to arrange training. After successful completion of training, the access will become active. If further authorisation is required, a request is immediately sent to the data owner (typically a member of staff in AAD central administration team(s)) to authorise the access. You will receive an email notification as soon as the access has been approved and it will be active immediately. This authorisation is usually completed within one working day.

It is critically important for Information Security and Data Protection that the Information Custodian understands and acknowledges their key role in managing data. The 'terms and conditions sign up' are intended to serve as a reminder for Information Custodians.

This is a simple process, using the SSP SITS Access Request form in Sharepoint, please refer to the SITS:Vision access webpages.

There are many versions of SITS:Vision, different versions are used for different purposes e.g. development work, testing the system, live use of the system. Typically you will need to use SITS:Vision LIVE environment unless you are instructed otherwise. If you are still unsure, contact the Support Centre.

User Groups control access to specific parts of the SITS:Vision system. If you have access to SITS:Vision, or are requesting access for someone as an Information Custodian, then a single User Group will apply. When requesting access to SITS:Vision, sometimes it can really help if you know of another member of staff within your section who has the type of access that is needed. Knowing what type of ‘User Group’ to belong to will help give the appropriate access within SITS:Vision. Don’t worry if you don’t know this – the SSSC will help identify it. Contact the Support Centre if when completing the SITS:Vision Access Request form you are unsure of what User Group to request.

Colleges

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Where a staff member has a different affiliation permissions for the college are marked in red and/or an exclamation mark.

The user can check their own permission status in eVision or you can check it as the IC. The permission may not immediately be visible to the user because the permission requires secondary sign-off or training needs to be completed. The user will receive an invitation to training where appropriate or available courses can be checked on the Training Courses page.

You have chosen a responsibility that requires ‘secondary sign-off’ and also requires a reason for the access being requested (e.g. ‘disability info- read only’ access). You should enter a justification for why the person requires this access which should expedite the sign-off process. 

Division/Department/Faculty

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Where a staff member has a different affiliation permissions for the division/department are marked in red and/or an exclamation mark.

You have chosen a responsibility that requires ‘secondary sign-off’ and also requires a reason for the access being requested (e.g. ‘disability info- read only’ access). You should enter a justification for why the person requires this access which should expedite the sign-off process.

You can run the ‘Programmes’ dataview and check the ‘Administering Department’ column to help with this step. Alternatively, you can contact the Support Centre for assistance.

If you work in a division or a department with sub-departments, this may be because the permission was added multiple times for a given department. This will mean that the permission will need to be removed multiple times before it is fully removed from the user’s list of permissions.  Alternatively, you can contact the Support Centre for assistance.

The user can check their own permission status in eVision or you can check it as the IC. The permission may not immediately be visible to the user because the permission requires secondary sign-off or training needs to be completed. The user will receive an invitation to training where appropriate or available courses can be checked on the  Training Courses page. Or, if you are an IC for a department/faculty/division with sub-departments, then it is possible the programme is affiliated at a different level from the one allocated. To check this, please run the ‘Programmes’ dataview and check the ‘Administering Department’ column. Alternatively, you can contact the Support Centre for assistance.

SITS: VISION FAQs

SITS FAQ

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Access to SITS: Vision is to be requested by your Information Custodian. Follow the instructions on the SITS:Vision access page to get access.

A guide to University student statuses and how these relate to a student’s entitlement to attend lectures and receive tuition, as well as accessing facilities and services, is available on the Student Records website

It is possible to access SITS:Vision outside of the university network however you will need to have first setup a Remote Access Account and have setup a Virtual Private Network (VPN).

A Remote Access account can be setup by anyone who already has an active Single Sign On (SSO) account. A VPN can be setup by downloading Cisco AnyConnect Client to your desktop. For further details and support for setting up Remote Access and VPN please visit the IT Services website.

Once you have setup your account, installed VPN and logged in you will be able to access SITS:Vision via the usual web link (use the Login to SITS:Vision button on our website).

Systems availability

All student systems available!

Please also see the Systems Availability page for details of the status of each system. For scheduled downtime please see the Notices page for more information.

COVID19 SERVICE UPDATE - Please see the Notices page for further information.

 

Contact us


student.systems@admin.ox.ac.uk
01865 (2)84848

Opening Hours: 
08:30 - 17:00 Mon - Fri
(excl. BHs & fixed closure days)

Gibson Building, Ground Floor
Radcliffe Observatory Quarter
Woodstock Road
Oxford OX2 6GG