Academic Model Project (2017-2018)

UCL's student record management system (SITS) is at the start of an improvement programme over the next 18 months thanks to the Academic Model Project.

SITS is a key component of Portico, the UCL Student Information Service, which is used by all students to enrol, register for modules and electives, record skills development, assessment, progression and awards. 

The Academic Model is the term used to describe how curriculum data in SITS is structured and relates to one another. At present, UCL’s Academic Model is not set up in the most efficient way. Improving this structure will enable increased automation, more detailed and accurate reporting, and more streamlined processes for both staff and students.

SITS underpins almost all student facing operations, covering the full student record lifecycle with 96 components from application to graduation. It handles 90,000 applications and 48,000 offer confirmations and drives information to over 40 other systems that support processes such as access to the library and IT, student fees and timetabling.  It manages more than 38,000 students in one year, holding almost 3 million marks and over 250,000 historical student records. It processes over £1.2 billion of tuition and accommodation fees, student funding, fines and graduation ceremonies. At peak times, there are around 350,000 student logins, 45,000 staff logins, 12,000 financial transactions and 2,600 help calls in a single month.

However, in the past decade since the implementation of SITS, the UCL student landscape has changed in scale and scope, with a 40% increase in student numbers, new emphasis on Life Learning, Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) requirements and new strands of activity. 

The project has five areas of focus:

1. Ensure SITS data is setup in a way that reflects best practice

2. UCL’s regulations, structure and credit framework are represented in SITS

3. Facilitate process improvements made possible by the new data structure

4. A robust technical environment with reporting capability to match our needs

5. A re-built student fees matrix to match the new and improved data structure

2017/18 Data Collections

As part of the next phase of the Academic Model Project (AMP) the team will be undertaking a series of data collection exercises to support the improvement of the quality and structure of curriculum information in SITS/Portico, and the introduction of the Programme Summary (replacing the Programme Specification and other documents from 2018/19).

The three data collections will focus on module data, programme data, and teaching and assessment data. In October we are launching the data collection for all programmes running across the institution.

The presentation below (approx. 25 minutes) is an initial briefing on these collections and further information will follow. If you have any questions please contact the project team