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December 7 to December 11, 2015

Features & Improvements

Test proctoring! Now faculty have the option of requiring a proctor be present while students take tests on Populi. It uses SMS to send check-in and check-out codes to the proctor's mobile phone; if anything's amiss, the test gets flagged for review. Learn more in the test setup article and on the Populi Blog.

Course evaluations now have a lock until setting. Previously the lock grades setting enforced the lock in perpetuity—even beyond the evaluation's available dates—and students who didn't fill out the eval could be painted into a corner. The lock until setting lets you enforce a grade lock up until a certain point, at which time the grade lock is removed.

We added a pile of financial info to the Data Slicer: now you can combine academic information with basic billing info like pending charges, current balance, and a dozen other items.

Did a bunch of stuff to the unseen innards of Populi that improve performance and lay the groundwork for good things to come. I'd tell you more, but it involves a bunch of acronyms and computerese that would probably just make your eyes water.

Added a new transcript variable for course delivery method. This will no doubt profoundly alter higher education forever and ever unto ages and ages.

Bugfixes

A library fines bug could result in some astounding multiplication errors that, while being a boon to library fine revenues, resulted in some ridiculously unfair late fees. $42 in late fees for a book a few days late is not cool. That bug is gone.

Did a couple things to the new refund aid workflow:

  • The Refund Source field was still appearing in the Record Payment dialog. The field accomplished nothing, so we auctioned it off to the lowest bidder.
  • Added greater detail to the transaction description for refunds. The description for a $10,000 refund can now read: "Refunds: Pell Grant: 3,400, PLUS Loan: 600, Customer Payments: 5,000, Customer Credits: 1,000". Now isn't that informative? Financial auditors should love it.

Fixed a bunch of dead links to facilities-related pages that plain ol' Staff users shouldn't really be seeing any more.

If:

  • Enable Clinical Hours = "Yes"
  • Clinical Hours Calculation = "Treat clinical hours like academic hours"
  • A course has Enable clinical hours = "Yes"...

Then we now show the Clinical Hours separately under the hours for the course. Our previous display method equivocated clinical and academic hours, which caused consternation.

We recently got rid of the Export XLS option from the General Ledger in favor of a much better Export CSV option—the better to handle large exports, my dear. But we're a fickle tech company, so we added Export XLS back in... but only for exports of fewer than 10,000 records.

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