SAMIS will be unavailable Tuesday and Wednesday 18 and 19 July 2017 while we upgrade to version 9.3. We need time to back-up the databases and complete underlying work on the servers and databases before the upgrade starts. For this reason, we ask users to stop using SAMIS at 5pm, Monday 17 July 2017.
The following applications will be unavailable for the duration of the upgrade:
- SAMIS on the web (includes Unit Evaluation and Coursework Coversheet printing and scanning)
- SAMIS Desktop Client
- Application Tracker
- Online Applications
- SAMIS bookings (PG Skills, University Open Days, UCAS Open Days)
- Applicant username and password generation
- Registration Online (ROL)
- Business Objects (SAMIS-related reports only)
- Student Lookup
- User account creation & some other Computing Services' user account tools
Data to / from SAMIS and other systems will not update during the upgrade. If you are responsible for any technical interfaces to / from SAMIS, please ensure that your connections to the database will not be attempting to run during this period. Systems that provide data to or get data from SAMIS include:
- Room Service
- Exam Timetable
- Student Loan Company
- Students' Union (MSL)
Thank you for your patience while this necessary upgrade takes place. We expect to have all SAMIS related systems available again by 9am, Thursday 20 July.
Congratulations to SAMIS Developer, Steve Wyatt who has graduated with a first class degree in BSc (Hons) in Applied Computing. We recently caught up with Steve to discuss his achievements.
What qualification did you study?
I studied for a BSc Honours degree in Applied Computing.
When did you start it?
The BSc course of study required a foundation degree which I had to obtain first, so the study started in 2009. After receiving the foundation degree I was able to ‘top-up’ to a BSc (Hons) degree which, took a further 2 years of part-time study.
Did Computing Services help?
Yes I wouldn’t have been able to do this without them. I needed to attend the lectures for 1 afternoon per week over 34 weeks of each academic year. I was allowed the time to do this and I was assisted with the course fees and materials. As well as this I was able to tap in the knowledge of my colleagues who, whether they know it or not helped me get the degree. The support from the management and my colleagues was incredible and I have a debt of gratitude to everyone.
What parts of the course did you find enjoyable and useful for your role?
I would estimate that 90% the Applied Computing modules linked directly my current role. Covered in depth:
- Database development and management
- Managing financial resources
- Project management
- Unified Modelling Languages (use-cases and the like)
- Human Computer Interaction
- Threaded programming and concurrency
- Advanced web
- Managing services and customers
I really enjoyed most if not all the subjects covered but it did spark a keen academic interest in cyber-warfare and cyber-crime. These were lectured and researched in depth and whenever I now develop a front facing service my tin foil hat goes on to think how it will be exploited or attacked.
Anything else you like to add?
It was hard work both for myself, my family and my colleagues. Sometimes having to achieve the impossible with time-management, missing Christmas and Easter breaks and the odd 2am Java programming session was soul destroying. However it was one of the most rewarding things I’ve ever done and it has changed the course of my life for the better. I am now professionally and academically a completely different person to the man who first attended the course back in 2009. I will never forget all the people who helped me achieve this goal.
2015 BSc Honours Applied Computing part-time cohort. From left to right: Wayne Locke, Gail Tucker and Steven Wyatt.
Departmental Open Days are primarily aimed at students who have received an offer from the University and wish to take a closer look at the Department before finalising their UCAS choices. With over 14,500 conditional offers being made for undergraduate courses in the 2015 cycle so far, making sure that all these applicants receive an invitation to a Departmental Open Day, and then keeping track of numbers attending each day, can be a significant challenge. To make the process easier for applicants and departmental administrators alike, the SAMIS team have developed an automated system to manage this.
Departmental administrators enter details into SAMIS for all the Departmental Open Days they will be running for the current cycle. Then can then invite specific applicants to specific dates, show a range of dates that all applicants can attend, and control the number of places available on each day. The applicants receive an email with details of the dates available and a task which they can access via Application Tracker. The task allows the applicant to select a day they would like to attend, indicate how many guests they would like to bring, their method of travel to the university and any special requirements. On completing the task, the applicant receives an email confirming their choices.
Each time an applicant completes the Departmental Open Day Invitation task, data in SAMIS is updated. This allows the departmental administrators to know exactly how many people will be attending each open day. When the target number of applicants for each open day is reached, the date is automatically made unavailable for further selection.
By recording information such as 'method of travel' in the invitation task, departmental administrators can tailor content specifically to those attending; for example, emailing parking permits to those travelling by car.
Due to the popularity of open days at the University of Bath, the SAMIS team have also collaborated with Marketing and Communications; the Departmental Open Day Invitation system is currently being used to distribute information to invitees, such as details of a free Park & Ride bus service.
The University Compliance team, following a change in UKVI (UK Visas and Immigration) ID checking policy, needed to obtain copies of identity documentation for all current UK and EU students. Requesting that students send copies of identity documentation via email, which would then be manually checked and uploaded to the SAMIS database, had two obvious drawbacks. Firstly, it would raise security concerns with students who may not trust email as a safe way to submit personal documentation; secondly, it would require a dedicated member of staff to carry out the time-consuming task of manually checking and uploading each individual document.
In order to remove the drawbacks and make the process as simple and secure as possible, the SAMIS team worked together with the Compliance team to create an automated process whereby students could upload their own identity documentation via a SAMIS web form.
By using SAMIS web as the entry point, security concerns were mitigated as a user name and password are required to log in. Students are familiar with the SAMIS web interface, so were able to quickly and securely upload the required documentation.
Identity documents were stored directly into SAMIS against the student record, making the process as lean as possible.
By enabling students to upload their own identity documentation, the workload on the Compliance team was greatly reduced which allowed them to dedicate more time to specialist tasks.