“I have been involved with several different Data Governance projects, all of which have resulted in multifaceted benefits including streamlined data for improved reporting and unified System-wide business processes.

Linda Reid, Associate Registrar, UM

Instruction Mode

This workgroup reviewed all existing course instruction modes across the University of Maine System, surveyed the higher education landscape, and researched the needs of our UMS institutions in order to recommend a single set of consistent instruction mode descriptions, definitions and codes. The system-wide modes were revised by the Provosts’ Council in Fall 2020 and the new codes will be in place across UMS campuses starting in Summer 2021.

Early College Instructors

In 2020, the Early College workgroup made an additional improvement to the quality of Early College data in addition to their earlier work that resulted in consistent coding of Early College students’ Academic Programs, and Early College courses’ section numbers. In 2020, all Early College instructors were added into MaineStreet so that they are not only identifiable as Instructors of Record, but can also gain access to additional systems (e.g., Brightspace) when appropriate.

“Completion of the Early College Coding project saves me a couple of hours for every report I write that directly involves early college (i.e. Fall, Spring, Summer, and the Early College report), and makes additional ad-hoc reporting much faster. It also makes it much easier to identify whether errors are on my end or within the data, and if the latter, send questions directly to the specific institutions”

Justin Young, UMS Institutional Research

MaineStreet Access Process

This group created an online form for requesting access to student and academic related areas of MaineStreet. Previously, some campuses had a paper form for this work, while other campuses requested and granted access in an ad hoc manner. The electronic form, and accompanying procedures created by this workgroup, were piloted in Summer 2020 at UM and are now available to all campuses. The new process is consistent across functional areas and institutions within the UMS, and ensures that FERPA training has been completed for all individuals gaining access to CS. Finally, the process streamlines requesting, approving, and gaining access for requestors, their supervisors, and the individuals who grant the requested access.

Student Location Data Quality

The Student Location workgroup began its work in 2019 within the Distance Education Data Governance workgroup, to solve the issue of missing data regarding the physical location of our students—information that is required for NC-SARA and state authorization. The group has formulated and created an Activity Guide within MaineStreet to solicit information from students across the UMS. Through the guide, students update their home and local addresses, as well as their contact information and emergency contacts, creating an additional boost in data quality for purposes related to student and community health and safety in addition to the information required for NC-SARA and state authorization.

“Our ongoing ERP (MaineStreet) Assessment project to devise a roadmap for Unified Accreditation (UA) has identified consistent data coding standards as a common need across all functional areas.  Accordingly, data standards and coding consistency will prove essential for the University’s UA effort and UMS Data Governance will play a critical role in ensuring our success.”

David Demers, CIO, UMS