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Involving Students in a World-Class Student Management System Implementation - Why it Makes Good Sense

Ms Karen Davies

Western Sydney University

Background: The implementation of a Student Management System in any higher education institution is almost alike to a heart transplant. Significant planning with multiple stakeholders is required for the successful transitioning. A key driver of success is the improvements SMS system is expected to bring to students’ experiences.

Method: Therefore, the co-design approach, where students review the project whilst in implementation, allows for the students evolving view to be incorporated in design decisions. This directly aligns with University’s Securing Success 2017-2020 strategy.

The strategic direction of Western Sydney University is to be ‘A Distinctively Student-centred’ (Securing Success 2017-2020). The project is giving students a unique opportunity to engage in real life business project with industry experts (Securing Success 2017-2020 – 5.3) - a project that involves reflection of their experience through the University processes. It also gives students a voice via which, they, as future Computing professionals as well as the current system users can provide feedback and suggest possible new improvements, and perhaps solutions. Therefore, it is expected that reviews undertaken by current students for ongoing and future students will positively differentiate students’ Western experiences (Securing Success 2017-2020 - 1.1, 1.4, 1.5, 1.7).

Discussion: As Western Sydney University is implementing Banner as a new SMS, it is aligning this implementation to a set of its Guiding Principles. To ensure the focus remains on improving the student experience Student Centred SMS team is continuing its engagements with a group of the second year, Information Systems Deployment and Management students. The engagement is to explore students’ expectations and experiences with the University’s current student administration system while utilising user experience frameworks. Students are required to identify opportunities for streamlined processes that are to improve user experiences for all student interactions.

(A copy of this presentation is unfortunately not available).