Vista Customers: Between a Rock and Blackboard On SIS Integration

I can hardly believe what happened yesterday… I was doing a Sanity Check with Decision-Makers on Grade Submission from Bb Vista to SunGard Banner and they totally reversed their thinking on a decision made 4 years ago which had actually been gaining momentum for this past year. Whoa …

The decision to work with Blackboard on customizations now for the long-awaited Midterm and Final grade submission directly from Bb Vista was nixed in favor of customizing SunGard Banner’s Self-Service form to pull grade data (if any) from Bb Vista -or import directly from .csv.

The following reasons were cited:

1) Longevity of solution: SunGard Banner will be keeping its current SSB architecture with only minor tweaks for nearly 5 years. It is unknown whether Blackboard’s NG line will even have a grade submission to SunGard.

2) Useability for Faculty: Our request for an SOW on customizing the current Bb Vista 8 could not include, said the developers, changes to the UI (which is the sucky part of the whole experience).

3) Burden for Support: Basically if we’re going to have to customize anyway, we might as well have more control over the interface. If NG X doesn’t include SIS integration in 2011, we’ll still present faculty with “our” interface, and switch CMS’s under the covers.

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4 responses to “Vista Customers: Between a Rock and Blackboard On SIS Integration

  1. Click on “RamCT/ARIES Import of Final Grades” for ColoState’s info to our instructors, including our “How-To”.
    I applaud your team’s decision & think your new approach is a much more sustainable, long-term plan.
    Melody

  2. A quick look at Melody’s comment below looks like they have set up the Luminis Data Integration Suite to send midterm and final grades from CE/Vista to Banner. I’ll admit I have forgotten why ND hasn’t implemented this.
    Integration is a touchy subject here. So many of them have caused major headaches, so the fewer implemented, the better.

  3. Colorado State did one better than that… they are bypassing the LDI, using a DB Link from Banner SSB and pulling the grades from Bb Vista. They’ve customized the SSB interface in SunGard Banner. Looks like ND is going to do the same.

  4. This reminds me of our migration tool developers saying, “Why do we need to use the backupRestoreCLI.sh? We should just use the DB link to create the .bak. file.” 🙂
    In this case, I agree. LDI sucks. Your approach is better. Are you going to use the same to populate the students, sections, and enrollments?

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