Exeter digital check in project

From September 2017 a small number of selected taught students from each campus at the University will be piloting the use of a new digital check in system to register their attendance at teaching sessions. This will be in addition to the current attendance paper registers:

Pilots will be in:

Terms 1 and 2

Sport and Health Sciences - St Luke's

Business School – Streatham and Penryn

Term 3

Radiography – St Luke's

If the pilots are successful the system will be rolled out for all taught students from September 2018.

Why are we piloting this?

The University already monitors student attendance. We do this in order to fulfil our obligation to notify the UKVI of any continuous non-attendance by Tier 4 international students and to identify student welfare concerns for our taught students in order to support them effectively. Certain programmes also require attendance monitoring in order to fulfil professional accreditation requirements (for example Medicine).

Currently any attendance logging during sessions is completed by signing a paper form.  Using the paper form diverts student and academic attention during the teaching session, wastes paper and takes longer to be logged and actioned.

The digital check in system provides a digital, effective and accurate way of carrying out this work. 

How does it work?

The new system links to the timetable and uses Bluetooth beacons in teaching rooms which interact with the iExeter app (available on smartphone, tablet or laptop). Using location services and Bluetooth, your device will alert you that you need to check in at the start of each teaching session. Through iExeter you’ll be able to verify your attendance and location.

Teaching staff involved in the pilot will be asked to remind students participating to check in at the start of sessions.

Your location is not permanently tracked by the system. 

What next?

We will keep you updated with details regarding the pilots. If you have any feedback or questions please email checkinproject@exeter.ac.uk

FAQs

We recommend that all students access iExeter so they can view their personalised timetables, assessment submissions and more with ease.  iExeter is available as a smartphone app and desktop version. 

For the pilot groups we will be asking students to speak to their lecturer if they encounter any issues and self help training will be provided. Students can use any smartphone, tablet or PC to access  their iExeter information within range of the beacon.

No. You will be notified of your upcoming timetabled activities so you will need to enable Bluetooth in order to check in, but you do not have to have it on continually.

Yes. You do not need to be connected to Wi-Fi to check-in. Your check-ins are stored in your phone and are submitted next time a connection is made.

If your push notifications are turned on, you will receive a notification for each successful check-in.

No. The checked-in activities are only recorded when in range of a beacon at the time of a timetabled activity. Attendance is only stored in the app on a successful check-in – when someone is in the right place at the right time.

The current student attendance policy is outlined in the General Regulations for Students and there is also Guidance for Tier 4 International Students. Please refer to your student handbook for the most relevant information to your programme (particularly in relation to professionally accredited programmes).

During the 2017/18 academic year, the Taught Faculty Board will be considering whether the current policy regarding taught student attendance should be revised with any changes taking affect from September 2018. 

Absence can be reported through the absence reporting tool in iExeter. In some cases you will need to provide evidence to support your claim. More details are available in your course handbook.

Staff and student training for the pilots groups will be provided at the beginning of the pilot/rollout period.  A short video will be made available on the web in August 17 which will give an overview of the system and how to use it. 

As it is currently (using the paper based system).

The Home Office requires the University to monitor the attendance of all its Tier 4 students and to withdraw immigration sponsorship in any cases where attendance does not meet their prescribed criteria. 

For non-Tier 4 taught students attendance data is reviewed to ensure that students are in attendance during term time and fulfilling the requirements of their programme. If there are any significant or unusual absences which have not been explained (see Q3), these are investigated with the student concerned. 

For the students and staff involved in the pilots happening in the 2017/8 year there will be structured feedback to ensure that views and lessons learned are captured. In addition to this the checkinproject@exeter.ac.uk email address will be checked regularly.    

These FAQs will be updated regularly in response to student and staff feedback and the stage of the project.

The results of the pilot will be considered and if the system has worked effectively it will be rolled out to all taught students in September 2018.