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LEADERSHIP DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM 2001/2002

STUDENT PORTAL PROJECT


May 22, 2002

Cecille Cabacungan, Goldman School of Public Policy


Lesley Clark, Center for Organizational Effectiveness
Rachelle Feldman, Financial Aid Office
Paula Flamm, University Health Services
Gail Ford, The Library
Kati Markowitz, Neuroscience Institute
Stacey Shulman, Department of Chemical Engineering
Dan Sullivan, Haas School of Business

Imagine a single Website personalized to meet all your cyberneeds one


that would keep you up-to-date on campus events and academic
information and would be accessible from any computer.
-- The Daily Californian, April 15, 2002

Table of Contents
Executive Summary
Main Report
I.
II.
III.
IV.
V.
VI.
VII.

Charge and Methodology


Findings
Portal Development, Current Practices
Costs and Phased Implementation
Conclusions and Recommendations; Criteria for Measuring Portal Success
Three Portal Interface Options for Look and Feel; Criteria for Evaluating Options
Portal Names

Appendices
Introduction, Charge, and Methodology
Appendix I Definitions
Appendix II Respondents
Appendix III Student Survey Instrument
Appendix IV Staff, Faculty, Administrator One-on-One Interview Questions
Appendix V Staff Focus Group Questions
Appendix VI Staff, Faculty, and Administrator Survey Instrument
Appendix VII Portal Developer Questionnaire
UCB Student Response
Appendix VIII Undergraduate Affairs Focus Groups, Raw Data, 2001
Appendix IX Undergraduate Affairs Focus Groups, Draft Summary, 2001
Appendix X UCB Student Survey Data, LDP, 2002
Appendix XI Summary of Student Perspective
UCB Staff, Faculty and Administrator Response
Appendix XII One-on-one Interviews, Content
Appendix XIII Responses, UCB Staff, Faculty, and Administrator Survey
Appendix XIV Responses, Staff Focus Groups
Portal Providers
Appendix XVCollated Responses to Non-Statistical Interview Questions
Appendix XVI Portal Developer Basic Data
Appendix XVII Illustrative Examples of Portal Development
Literature
Appendix XVIII Literature Review
Appendix XIX Bibliography
Options Sample Portals
Appendix XX Portal Option 1
Appendix XXI Portal Option 2
Appendix XXII Portal Option 3
Portal Names
Appendix XXIII Suggested Portal Names
Things you didnt ask
Appendix XXIV Faculty perspectives

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

Executive Summary
A student web portal would allow UC Berkeley students to access online campus services, websites, and course
information from one convenient location, using a single user ID and password. They would be able to customize
the portal to their own liking, adding or deleting links to internal websites, internal news channels aimed at
particular groups of students, and external information such as sports, weather, entertainment, etc.
Our project team was asked to report on why the University should develop such a student web portal; interview
Berkeley students, staff, and faculty to assess their level of interest in a portal and ensure that those who develop
the portal understand the features these stakeholders feel a portal should have; investigate best practices at other
Universities that have already deployed student web portals; and suggest management models for the portal
project. We were also charged with presenting three possible user interfaces, and recommend names for the
Berkeley student web portal.
The central goal of the Chancellors e-Berkeley Initiative is to transform the day-to-day operations of the
University by reducing paperwork; putting more information services and transactions online; and streamlining
access to course information and content. A student web portal would collect these campus services and functions
into a single website, making it easy for students to find and use online services, and thus increasing the
likelihood that the University can attain the strategic goals laid out in the e-Berkeley Initiative.
We used a combination of surveys, focus groups, and one-on-one interviews to gather information from Berkeley
students, faculty, and staff, and from key personnel at other institutions that have operational student portals.
Berkeley students, and the staff who deliver services to them, are very excited by the possibilities a student web
portal offers. Roughly 70 percent of student respondents said a portal would make their lives easier. However,
when forced to rank-order a portal amongst a list of other applications that would need to be built in order to
deliver campus services through the web, both groups put the portal at the very bottom of their list. A portal
would not make much of an impact on their lives unless the University builds these other applications either
concurrently with or prior to a web portal.
These groups want a portal that is easy to use; that is secure and protects student privacy; and that is linked to a
roles database so that information can be targeted to particular groups of students. The roles database is crucial to
the success of a portal, as it will allow students, staff and faculty with similar interests to identify each other.
Students, faculty and staff expressed several concerns about a portal, including the need for the project to be
sufficiently funded; the need for a campus infrastructure robust enough to handle increased web traffic as a result
of a successful portal; and that as many systems as possible be integrated into the portal, since the portals
usefulness to them will largely be a function of how much campus business students can conduct online.
Other institutions that have successfully deployed student web portals reported that their portal development
project encouraged the development and integration of existing and new systems, and pushed data owners to think
about which audiences they want to reach, what services they want to offer, and how to best package information
and applications. Students immediately began using these portals in high numbers, even though the portals were
still works in progress at the time of launch. Students are satisfied with the ways that portals make it easier to
conduct campus business, and portals heighten student expectations of other campus online services.
We found no common model for managing the development process as a whole. For example, some schools set
up a steering committee of stakeholders from across campus; some let the campus information technology group
guide all aspects of the development process; and others gave ownership to a campus-wide E-initiative
committee similar to the e-Berkeley group at UC. And there was no common model for the management of
content once the portal was deployed. Some gave this responsibility to the university public information office,
others to the campus E-initiative group or a special steering committee established for this purpose.

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

The amount of time it took to develop these portals ranged from five days to one year. The number of staff FTE
involved varied from two to 45 people. Funding levels also varied widely, from less than $100,000 to $2.5
million. There was no correlation between level of funding and the length of time it took to complete the project.
However, there was a direct correlation between the level of satisfaction with the portal and the length of time the
portal had been in production.
We did find some common experiences. All institutions report that the technical management of the portal resides
in an information technology unit. All believe that high-level executive support was key to the success of their
portal development project.
Based on our research we have come to a number of conclusions:
Build it and they will come. The Berkeley student web portal will develop over time; it will not realize its full
potential until existing systems are integrated into the portal framework and new systems for delivering services
through the web come on line. However, students will begin using it immediately, and there is no reason to delay
the development process.
The portal will support multiple campus goals. These include the e-Berkeley vision of transforming the way
campus business is conducted; improving the undergraduate experience; and building community by allowing
people with similar interests to find and connect with each other.
The portal doesnt have to be expensive. However, it does need support at the highest level of administration,
and it needs steady and ongoing funding throughout its life. Content providers (both staff and faculty) need
training, consultation, and acknowledgment and reward for doing their jobs in new ways.
Set up clear lines of authority before beginning development and implementation. Technical management
for the Berkeley student web portal should belong to the campus Information Systems & Technology group.
However, no single campus entity seems to have overall responsibility for managing internal campus
communications. The first steps in developing a student portal are to assign this responsibility and to support this
assignment by establishing a management team to bring together the many aspects of student portal development
and deployment (e.g., technology, content, training and support, design, policy, procedures, etc.).
A tab-based user interface provides the greatest flexibility for users and developers. Tabs allow students to
toggle quickly between different types of information. As more online content becomes available over time, it is a
simple matter for developers to add new tabs to accommodate and organize the new content. Allowing students to
create and name some or all of the tabs on their personal portal pages wound give them the maximum flexibility
in choosing how to organize information to suit their own needs.
Names for the Berkeley student web portal. In descending order of preference, we suggest the following
names for the portal: MyCal, Bear Essentials, Sather Gateway, CalWeb and Oski Online.

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

Section I: Charge and Methodology


UC Berkeley is discussing the topic of portal technology. Whom might a student web portal serve? What
content would it contain? What would it look like? Should the campus invest in a student portal? If so,
where would this rank with other technological proposals under consideration?
CHARGE

To further this discussion, five campus leaders (Susie Castillo-Robson, Registrar; Lisa Chow, Business
Manager, Student Information Systems; Tim Heidinger, Manager, UGA Computing; Christina Maslach,
Vice Provost, Undergraduate Education; and J.R. Schulden, Director, IST, Student Information Systems)
have sponsored a Leadership Development Program project to
1) Investigate and report on the reasons for doing a student portal. What would be the
Universitys goal(s) in providing such a portal? How will the campus know if the portal realizes
these goals?
2) Summarize best practice research on student portals (on-campus and/or at other institutions.)
Report on the gains portal designers seek and what their actual experience has been (both the
pros and cons) when putting a portal in place. Collect information on who was involved in
development, design, and ongoing management of the portal and its content.
3) Interview UCB students, student service providers, faculty and administrators, and report on
the benefits they would seek from a student portal, as well as concerns they may have about
authorizing development of one. Question users and providers as to where they would rank
development of a student portal compared to other web-based student-oriented services.
4) Suggest campus groups that should be involved in developing and designing a UCB student
portal. Identify these groups by answering: a) whom do the students interact with the most? b)
what student groups exist that speak for the student body? c) what high level administrators are
most responsible for the universitys image? d) who might be involved in managing the
technology, e) who might be responsible for managing the content.
5) Present three options of what a student portal might look like and what might be its top twenty
enterprise applications (e.g., calendar, course information, news, services, sporting events, etc.)
Demonstrate and discuss the pros and cons of various user interfaces. Determine the criteria for
evaluating these options.
6) Recommend names for the student portal (including non-Bear names)
The groups work spanned five months, from January through May 2002. Our findings, observations,
and conclusions follow.
WHAT IS A STUDENT WEB PORTAL? AND OTHER DEFINITIONS

There are almost as many definitions of a student web portal as there are people talking about them. A
portal and the information that it helps to organize are two sides of the same coin great portal software
without good information is not useful. Neither is usable without a network infrastructure that supports
fast access by thousands of simultaneous users. In talking with our colleagues we learned a great deal
6

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

about the larger world of portal development look and feel, content, the need for integration,
management models, etc.
We discovered a wide range of sophistication among students, faculty, and staff, in their knowledge
about portals. This is the working definition we took to the lay campus community:
The portal would provide students with access to online campus services, websites, and course
information from one convenient location, using a single user ID and password. Students would
be able to customize the portal to their own liking, adding or deleting links to internal web sties,
internal news channels aimed at particular groups of students, and external information such as
sports, weather, entertainment, etc.
We also found that there is a world of portal-related terminology that is not common knowledge. For
purposes of this report, we try to avoid jargon, but may not have been totally successful in doing so. See
Appendix I for a list of terms.
METHODOLOGY

We used a combination of surveys, focus groups, and one-on-one interviews to gather information from
students, faculty, staff, and portal developers. The on-campus respondents come from a variety of
academic disciplines and administrative departments.
The student survey focused on what content and features students would find most useful in a student
web portal. The staff / faculty / administrator interviews and focus groups expanded the inquiry to
include questions on management structures and portal design. Portal provider questions focused on the
processes undertaken to conceive, design, implement and manage their portals, as well as their opinions
on whether their portals were meeting expectations. We also took an introductory look at the literature
on portals, and at how academic institutions are trying to use the web to improve their business
applications. Survey instruments and responses can be found in the Appendices.
AND THERES ALWAYS MORE

Since we did many one-on-one interviews, we heard ideas, suggestions, frustrations, and wish-lists that
are slightly outside our scope. Nonetheless, these asides can prove useful, and have been included as an
Appendix.

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

Section II: Findings


We include responses from 328 students, eighty-five staff and administrators, nine faculty, and nine institutions
that have operational portals. Not surprisingly, we did not receive unanimity of response on any topic, although
there are trends.
CAVEAT ON FINDINGS

Respondents on campus could not easily distinguish between the portal (as framework, connector, gateway) and
the back-end systems (sources for the actual information/services). Our findings, therefore, reflect responses from
populations with varying degrees of familiarity and understanding of portal and interactive system technology.
UNIVERSITY GOALS A STUDENT PORTAL MIGHT HELP TO REALIZE

Most of our respondents believe that an integrated student web portal would help the campus meet a variety of
goals shared by students, faculty, staff and senior administrators. These include:

building community by building relationships

improving the quality of student life, thereby improving retention

aiding technological advances in teaching

fostering a consistent sense of University identity

showcasing what the University offers

improving operational effectiveness

aiding campus recruitment efforts, especially if the student portal included a prospective student variation
PROS OF A STUDENT PORTAL

Provides easy access to different online systems and information sources. A portal gives students one
place to enter their on-line Berkeley experience and can increase students productivity. By using a single logon (CalNet I.D. and password), a student can do business, receive information and services organized
according to their needs (rather than administrative unit), and access course and campus event information of
particular interest. Students can increase their productivity, spending less time searching for information.

Enhances communication. A portal can help sustain positive contact between each stakeholder and the
University and provide conduits for communications within interest groups. If all campus communications are
accessible through one gateway, students are likely to check their portal often and receive messages and
information in a timely and efficient manner. Students receive information tailored to their areas of interest
even if these areas are outside their major or department. A learning management system integrated with a
student portal would provide faculty with an easy way to communicate schedules and deadlines, set up
discussion groups, send out assignments, give quizzes, and send notices. An integrated calendar system would
give staff and campus groups an easy and consistent way to communicate information about deadlines and
events.

Portability. Students can access their information and favorite links from anywhere they can access the
World Wide Web. This gives students more flexibility in when, where, and how to conduct their student
business.

Enhances sense of Berkeley community and image. Consistent look and feel in a portal can enhance the
University image. The ability to connect with others with similar interests can help build a series of on-line
"communities" that in turn create a sense of inclusiveness in the overall university community. A portal also
signals the institutions effective use of technology in serving and educating its students.

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

Enhances effectiveness of in-person services. While students can get their everyday "business" done online, faculty, advisors, and other staff can focus on giving higher-level and more in-depth, in-person service
and education. It could free up class time for less lecture, allowing more discussion and interaction.

Provides framework and motivation for development of on-line services and applications. A student
portal encourages integration and standardized use of technology; it will increase efficiency and save costs
otherwise associated with maintaining disparate technologies and database structures. The portal provides a
campus-wide umbrella which focuses strategic development of enterprise systems. Integration of existing and
new systems leads to increased efficiency.

Encourages data owners to rethink and improve web offerings. Portal developers report that portals
encourage data owners to think about which audiences they want to reach, what services they want to offer,
and to package information and applications accordingly. To the extent that a portal succeeds in improving
internal communication, other campus and departmental websites will become focused on the external
audience, helping to resolve a common dilemma faced by web designers who now struggle to address the
needs of both internal and external customers.

CONCERNS ABOUT DEVELOPING A STUDENT PORTAL

Overall, students had few concerns and considerable enthusiasm for the portal and other applications that they see
as making their lives easier. There were, however, several concerns expressed by students, faculty, and/or staff,
which need to be addressed:

Resources. Budgetary support needs to be in place for hardware, software, technical staffing, training, and
staffing support for faculty as well as administrative units. Funding needs to be available for the development
of new applications behind the portal and for connecting existing campus systems (e.g., Bearfacts, Telebears,
Summer Session, Library, CARS, etc.) Funding is not a one-time investment portals are iterative and their
potential evolves over time and funding needs to be stable and available for the life span of the project.

Robust and scalable. Technical infrastructures must be able to support heavy traffic.

Integrated. The more systems that can be integrated behind the student portal, the more useful (and used) it
will become.

Governance. There is a perception that nobody currently owns or is responsible for establishing and
maintaining internal campus communications. Clear guidelines and authority need to be established. (See
Management Models section, below, for potential models.) There is consensus that students shouldnt be
overwhelmed with information, and there needs to be a structure in place to ensure this outcome.

WHAT CAPABILITIES / FEATURES SHOULD PORTAL SOFTWARE HAVE?

1. Easy for students to use and customize. Students, staff, faculty, and portal providers report
that a portal should be easy to use; it should support a single logon and password for users to
access all campus functions provided by the portal. It must be accessible and useful for
disabled students. Other features specifically named include: clean design with a consistent
look and feel; fast, even over a phone line; easy subscription tool; search tool; easy
navigation, without recourse to the back button; feedback/help desk/how-to pop-ups when
necessary.

Be developed in conjunction with a roles database. There is considerable interest in the possibilities that an
extensive roles database would support. In this context, faculty, staff, and administrators hope that a roles
database could be filled system-to-system; by staff wanting to distinguish among clienteles; and by students
self-selecting communities/topics of interest.

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

Easy for data owners (content providers) to use. Portal providers as well as UCB staff and faculty
recommend an easy-to-use content management tool that would not require high levels of technical
knowledge, and that can support a large number of data owners.

Notification to students personalized, generic, requisite. Some students and staff are opposed, in
principle, to requisite information but as shown in the following table, over half of the students surveyed
expressed a desire to receive important information from their colleges and the Registrars Office, with
another 42% expressing an interest in receiving unsolicited general campus news. Some portal providers from
other campuses as well as UCB staff, administrators, and faculty suggest that the portal should allow the
campus to provide information to students that they could not remove.
Student Preferences for Types of Notification
70.00%
63.38%
60.00%

Percentage of Respondents

50.70%
50.00%
41.90%
40.00%
30.99%
30.00%

20.00%

17.25%
9.51%

10.00%

1.41%

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Allow for integration of existing systems, growth of future systems, and communication between
systems. The portal must be developed so that the integration of existing systems and addition of future
systems is supported.

Not too expensive, but not underfunded. (For more on costs, see below.)

Secure and private.

10

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002


HOW DOES THE PORTAL RANK ON PEOPLES WISH-LIST FOR NEAR- OR LONG-TERM DEVELOPMENT
OF APPLICATIONS?

Students ranked applications as follows, in descending order:


1. academic administrative transactions (e.g., enrolling in classes, requesting majors and minors, electronic
advising, requesting transcripts and diplomas, etc.)
2. an integrated calendar system (including course schedule, deadlines, daily appointments, etc.)
3. campus financial transactions online
4. a learning management system
5. a student web portal
Faculty and staff who provide services to students ranked applications, as follows:
1. academic administrative transactions
2. learning management (course-specific)
3. financial
4. an integrated calendar system
5. a student web portal
From the perspective of the e-Berkeley vision, a student web portal provides students with a single doorway
through which they may easily access other applications. The low ranking accorded to a portal by respondents
implies that they feel a student portal would not make much of an impact on their lives unless the campus builds
other integrated enterprise applications either concurrently with or prior to a web portal. Portal developers from
other institutions report that by initiating a portal project, they were able to use it to focus and encourage
development and integration of legacy and new enterprise systems.
TOP 21 LINKS

A student portal will likely connect students to two levels of content: transactional and informational.
Transactional applications are those which enable students to conduct campus business via the web. Informational
links would connect students to campus and external websites of interest, but do not offer interactive capabilities.
Based on our student survey data and on our understanding of whether or not various campus offices currently
allow students to conduct business transactions via the web, the top 21 links follow:
TRANSACTIONAL LINKS
1. Library
2. Black Lightning notes
3. Office of the Registrars transactional systems (e.g.,

course enrollment, ordering transcripts, etc. via


BearFacts and Telebears)
4. Bookstore
5.
6.
7.

Financial Aid Office


Campus Career Services
Web-based email

INFORMATIONAL LINKS

1. UC Events
2. Bay Area entertainment
3. Weather
4. Book price comparison engine(s)
5.
6.
7.
8.
9.
10.
11.
12.
13.
14.

Daily Cal
Political news
Regional news
External career services
Student associations and clubs
Recreation
University Health Services
Departmental Advising and news
Central campus advising and news
Parking & Transportation office

11

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

In addition to those cited above, respondents urged us to include resources for affinity groups within the larger
campus community (e.g., student parents; disabled students; transfer students; etc.) and to the Office of Student
Life.
As campus applications come on line allowing offices to begin delivering services through the web in the
transactional sense, they could move from the Informational list to the Transactional list.
WHO SHOULD BE INVOLVED IN DESIGN (NAVIGATION, LOOK, AND FEEL)?

The staff, faculty, and administrator groups view design as an iterative process and feel that the Student Portal
should be developed, deployed and changed as necessary. They suggested that the following individuals/groups be
included in design:

professional web designer

communications professional

technical representative

University branding/marketing professional

students
Our survey of portal developers surfaced three approaches to design:

IT group that implements/develops the portal together with a steering committee of stakeholders including
students, service providers (from central/outlying units/departments, faculty, administrative systems) and
executives.

IT group responsible for implementation only.

A subgroup of the e-initiative (in our case e-Berkeley) committee specifically charged with this task.
Our charge suggests that design should include those units with whom students interact most, and should include
representatives from student groups that speak for the student body. The following table represents results to
questions we asked in this regard:

Campus Offices Students Interact With on a Regular Basis


70.00%
63.73%

61.97%

50.00%
40.14%

40.00%

37.32% 36.97%

35.56%
27.82% 27.82%

30.00%

20.00%

25.35%
17.25% 17.25% 16.90% 16.20%

10.00%

5.99%

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Campus Office

12

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

Our student survey revealed that students interact mostly with the Library (64%) and the Registrars Office
(62%). The Graduate Assembly and the ASUC represent UCBs students, but in seeking respondents for our
student survey we discovered that neither group currently has an officer charged with issues of technology.
WHAT MANAGEMENT MODELS DID WE DISCOVER?

Whatever management model is selected, it must effectively guide and coordinate issues raised regarding policy,
standards, technology, content, security, training, support, and administrative procedures. UCB staff and
administrators underlined the importance of a student portal focusing on internal rather than external
communications and commented that responsibility for this kind of focus is not currently clearly assigned.
At UCB, most of those surveyed believed that technology issues should be delegated to IS&T and that
responsibility for content and granting authority to access the content should reside with data owners. Both
technological and content decisions should conform to existing and developing standards, as well as to campuswide policies for security, trademark, etc.
Management models of successful portals include:

Steering committee of stakeholders

IT group guiding content in the process of integrating services

E-initiative committee (e-Berkeley)

Executive nominated for this purpose

Implementation work group

University Relations/ Communications / Public Affairs

Combination of steering committee and small (3 to 5 member) executive decision-making group.


There is a general belief that high-level executive support (e.g., Provost, Chancellor, Cabinet) is instrumental in
the success of the project.

13

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

Section III: Portal Development, Current Practices


During extended interviews with portal providers at nine universities, we found different processes leading to the
successful development and deployment of portals. It is clear that the functionality of a portal develops over time.
The variety of experiences we encountered provides us with no clear sense of best practices at this point in
portal history. Rather, we present here a summary of trends and management models, as well as our conclusions.
Some intriguing and illustrative examples are provided in an Appendix.
GENERAL INFORMATION

IT professionals, from web developers to executives, were interviewed at the following institutions:

University of Texas

University of Washington

University of British Columbia

Stanford

University of Minnesota

UCLA

UC Davis

UC Irvine

UCBs Haas School of Business


Portal continues to mean different things to different people. At the core, however, is the desire to enhance
community, help students organize, save time and resources by streamlining institutional processes, and provide
services that focus on stakeholder needs and desires, not those of the unit providing services. In its simplest form,
a portal provides, as Randy Ebeling from University of Texas calls it, a mobile bookmark facility that can be
accessed anytime, anywhere in the world. Its hidden power lies in the opportunity to integrate discrete business
processes that will render information to better serve students.
IDENTIFYING NEED FOR A PORTAL

Other academic institutions identified their need for a student portal in a variety of ways:

IT professionals from systems development groups saw the portal as the next step in the series of electronic
services provided to their stakeholders;

IT professionals from the central unit reacted to threat of campus departments developing or purchasing
systems based on a wide variety of architectures and standards, and difficult to integrate into a campus-wide
system;

IT professionals realized that a portal mechanism would enable the entire institution to restructure its
relationships with the stakeholders as well as its web presence;

Students, through their governing bodies, pushed specifically for a student portal.
After preliminary identification of the need, in all cases except one, corroboration was provided by a mixture of
stakeholder groups (students, faculty, and staff) through:

Surveys

Interviews

Public meetings

Focus groups
Success, before implementation, was defined by all as being a function of usage: if people use it, then its a
success.

14

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002


DESIGN PROCESS

Students at most surveyed institutions were not directly involved in format and functionality design (IT
mostly decided these issues).
Format

Level of customization (not necessarily unlimited, just several options)


Consistency of design throughout
Simple, clean, uncluttered look

Functionality

Single log-on

Role-based authentication/authorization

On-line student systems, as available

Learning management system, if available


Other concerns in the design phase revolved around:

Scalability of system to high usage

Speed

Costs

Engaging sponsorship and partnerships for


content provision

Webmail
Search engine
Calendar, if available
General ease of use
Integration of background systems
Desire to organize by subject area, instead
of institutions organizational structure
A desire to foster communications

Most developers reviewed institutional portals, if available at the time of their projects start. The decision to
choose one over another depended on:

Familiarity to user (similarity to previous

Costs
system, existing other systems)

Match between available technical

Alignment with institutional, and/or


expertise and the system
system-wide, e-architecture standards

Alignment with electronic/software

Building community and proficiency


standards
within IT group by deciding to do it
internally
While students or other stakeholder groups might not have been involved in the design, beta releases or
prototypes were tested with student/stakeholder representatives, and necessary and appropriate changes were
implemented before production.
VENDORS, IMPLEMENTATION TIMELINE, FTE, COSTS

Most respondents chose either to build portal software in-house, or to use a freeware product like uPortal
or Metadot. Time of portal development (between end-of-design phase to first production release) varied
between five days to one year. FTE numbers involved in the development also varied widely, from two to
15-45 people. Funding ranged from less than $100k to $2.5 million over two years of development (in
most cases FTE costs not included.) There was, however, no direct correlation between levels of funding,
numbers of FTE, and timeline to completion.
FUNCTIONALITY AND CUSTOMIZATION

All outside institutions surveyed have multi-customer portals of which students are only one of the served
populations. The majority offer:

Services at the interactive level, and some

Single log-on (although not always as a


transactional features (added as they
one-stop-shop feature) and role-based
become available)
authorization

Customization feature a spectrum of

Access to non-campus information

15

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

templates, not completely free choice


The real substance of portal functionality is in its access to enterprise applications. Most portal providers report
that the portal spurred an increase in the development of enterprise applications, and though unsubstantiated by
hard statistics, they think that all available applications are more heavily used since the portal has gone live.
Moreover, they report that the portal pinpointed the need for development of other specific enterprise applications
to provide enhanced services to stakeholders.
An interesting feature of some portals is the cameo, a window within a channel that displays small but
important pieces of information. This information (e.g., how much money is left on a students meal card)
updates every time the user logs on and can be drawn from data, application, or web sources.
The question of locked-down (non-removable) information channels is handled differently at different
institutions. Models we found include:

No locked-down channels

One locked-down channel (for urgent university news, or portal-specific news) that appears on the log-in
page but not on the students customized page(s)

One or more locked-down channels that appears on the students customized page(s)
In lieu of locked-down channels, some institutions have a notifications section which appears on a students page
only when the information applies to the individual and is time-sensitive or otherwise of critical importance.
USAGE

Usage patterns vary according to the length of time from the systems release date. Most established portals report
between 60 and 99% usage by students; those that are brand new or limited in scope have lower usage rates.
Although several institutions had elaborate public relations campaigns before the portal release flyers, public
forums, meetings, presentations, inclusion in student orientation sessions, demos, newspaper articles, banners,
video clips, give-aways, etc. most institutions report that students found out about the portal immediately,
whether they invested in marketing or not. Moreover, usage started immediately. Feedback mechanisms range
from email links on the portal, help desk, input/feedback solicitations, public forums, other university review
mechanisms, to a designated official for student affairs (including portal affairs).
TECHNICAL MANAGEMENT

All institutions report that the technical management of the portal resides in an information technology
unit. The technical staff involved in maintaining and further developing the system ranges from two to
seven FTE, ranging in job duties: web architect/administrators/editors, programmers, and students
(probably from computing sciences).
CONTENT MANAGEMENT

Institutional portals we surveyed used the following models of content management:

University

Technology group
Relations/Communications/Public Affairs

Technology executive in charge of portal/e


E-University steering committee
affairs

Steering committees in conjunction with


executive decision-making group

16

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

We found that standards for content providers are spotty and not necessarily enforced:

Developers guide through integration

Existing general electronic information


process
policies/procedures

Published guidelines for content providers

Elaborate set of step by step procedures

Template for content provision


according to content type

None
Content ownership includes:

Systems for interactive/transactional links

Schools, departments, various offices


IT group

PROBLEM IDENTIFICATION

Technical difficulties encountered by portal developers include:

System technical complexity (JAVA)

Integration of existing services

Technology is still new, doesnt always

Browser/specific application dependence


scale and can be unstable

Length of time for development

Refining a roles database

Ensuring functionality for disabled students


Note: portal developers reported no security problems.
Content management difficulties include:

Learning curve for content providers

Content providers requesting right to


mandatory information channels

Keeping content current


Ability to update stakeholders on new
features in timely manner

Most portal providers encountered political difficulties to some extent, but no clear picture emerges. Some of
these difficulties revolve around:

Gaining sponsorship and buy-ins

Changing existing organizational culture

Content ownership issues

Informing people of new

Describing services appropriately on


services/features/functions
tabs/headers/labels/links Changing peoples Getting people on campus to trust each
perceptions
other

EVALUATION OF PORTALS

Most portal developers (with the exception of University of Texas) reported no formal, systematic evaluation of
the portals success. Nevertheless, most providers consider that the portal meet their expectations and goals at
least somewhat. Four out of nine respondents are completely satisfied with the results. The difference in
satisfaction levels correlate directly with the length of time the portals have been in production. The more stable
the portal, the higher the level of satisfaction.
Stakeholders, including students, at these institutions reported:

Decrease in spam email

Ease of access to needed information

Ease of doing business with the institution

Pleasure at level of services


Note: portal developers report that there is a certain level of expectation among students, and the sense of why
wouldnt this be available? They also report that the portal heightens user expectations of other on-line services.

17

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

Elements that helped portal developers meet their goals include:

Synergy among stakeholders

Strong executive support

Ease of creating content

Compatibility with technical staff

Robust, scalable system

Professional expertise

Good design

Fast pace of users adoption of the portal

Reorganization of entire institutional web

Firm deadlines
Elements that impeded achievement of goals include:

Lengthy process of development

Some software is still not user friendly or


developed enough.

Stakeholders do not immediately understand


full potential
Lack of robust content management tools

Portal developers were altogether very positive about their respective experiences with the project as a whole.
Some changes, if one could start over, include:

Get buy-in from executives and

More staff and funding to cut development


stakeholders earlier in the process
time

Use uPortal and not go at it alone (one of

More usability testing


the first portals developed, JAVA-SIG did

More focus on re-engineering discrete


not yet exist)
business practices to a more integrated

Search ability of databases


system

More time for design phase

Compatibility with wireless systems from

Have more applications available for


the outset
integration from the get-go
CONCLUSIONS

As seen from the above compilation of major themes covered by our portal provider survey, as well as after
reviewing documents and other institutional portals sites, it becomes clear that successful portal projects have
been developed and deployed using a variety of means and ways. Several common trends, however, do stand out:
a. All portals have been successful in attracting users. If you build it, they will come!
b. All portals are going through step-by-step processes of continual refinement.
c. The main technical focus of portal providers has been on performance: ensuring robustness, stability, and
scalability of the portal system.
d. Design, while important, has not been the driving force making-or-breaking the portal projects. The
iterative nature of such an undertaking ensures opportunities for changes in design after beta-testing,
usability studies, feedback from users, etc.
e. Single log-on is a major feature of portals.
f. Role-based authentication and authorization, also major features and highly desirable, can become a
component of later iterations without compromising the attraction of the initial portal.
While we outlined the different models for resources in our findings, we would like to add the following:
a. The portal should be viewed as a strategic investment 1, and as such, should be funded at consistent levels
throughout initial design, deployment, and subsequent development.
b. Planning for resource allocation should take into consideration training and the work-load of content
providers.
c. Resources should be planned for and allocated to ongoing and future back-end student systems which
need to be integrated with the portal, as well as the integration of existing legacy systems. The portal,
which is only a gateway, depends on the back-end systems it links and will ultimately be as successful as
these other systems.

UC2010

18

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

d. Throwing money into this project will not guarantee success. The $1 million per year University of
Michigan experiment shows that funds only do not a portal make. Money alone does not seem to ensure
speed either. The Stanford Enterprise System Portal Project is a two-year, $2.5 million project.
e. Whatever management model is selected, it must effectively guide and coordinate issues raised regarding
policy, standards, technology, content, security, training, support, and administrative procedures.
Responsibility and authority lines for internal communications need to be clearly defined and assigned.

19

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

Section IV: Costs and Phased Implementation


COSTS

Development and deployment of a portal involve both direct and indirect costs:

Set-up of technological framework for the user interface, including hardware and software

Conversion of campus systems to use CalNet ID and password

Development of a roles database that can be populated system-to-system; via staff interface (e.g.,
to flag a student as a member of a particular sub-group for tailoring communication); via student
self-identification (e.g., allowing students to sign-up for subject-based interests)

Upgrade of legacy systems

Programming of individual channels as systems become portal-ready

Purchase and implementation of a content management system

Consultation, contract help and/or technical training for staff and faculty who want to create
content

Departmental / unit assignment of staff time to rethink packaging their information for delivery
via a portal

Development or purchase of applications of particular appeal (e.g., a calendar system that can be
automatically populated; can have entries input by the student; with results that can be displayed
via the portal.)
Different institutions include different elements when speaking about costs, resulting in quite a range of answers
to our interview questions:
Institutions

University UCLA Universit


of
y of
Minnesot
Texas
a

UC
Davis

U of
U of
British Washing
Columbia
ton

UC
Irvineadmin
portal

Stanford UCB Haas


Business
School

InstitutionYes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
wide portal
Outside
No
No
No
No
No
No
No
Yes
No
vendor
What software METADOT SiteSiteSiteUPortal
SiteuPortal
Blue
METADOT
(freeware) developed developed developed (freeware) developed (freeware) Martini (freeware)
as of Fall
2002
# of staff
n/a
n/a
45/~14
7
4
2.5
1
12-15
4
implementing
FTE
various %
time
# of staff
1.5
n/a
5
4
1/10 FTE
4.5
1
5
2
maintaining
# of staff
n/a
n/a
185
4
2.5
2
0.75
5
4
further
campusdeveloping
wide
Costs
$105K+1.5
7
~$30K
$1004 FTE+
n/a
$15K
$2.5
Less than
ongoing additional
250K
1/10 FTE
(hardware) mil./2
$100K
FTE
FTE
ongoing
years
as of Fall
2002

20

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

Berkeley has made some estimates of costs for a basic infrastructure and programming support:
Project
e-Berkeley SIS proposal for
pilot/prototype (2002)
Portal production

Estimated cost/time
$95,000/1 year

Comments
Set up prototype of student portal
using JA-SIGs uPortal freeware
$50,000 for server first year;
hardware updates/maintenance
onward
2 FTEs: for system
administration/maintenance, and
setting up channels (building
connectors) to existing systems

$250,000/yearly

Time estimates for building connectors:

for Web-based CalNet ID authenticated systems (such as, BearFacts, TeleBears, Graduate Admissions, eGrades, etc.) , connector building/deployment will take anywhere from one to three months

one to two weeks for informational links, two to four weeks for operational (update) systems.

some legacy systems, such as CARS, entail major work (migration to new systems which allow CalNet
authentication, and then connection to the portal framework; the former is beyond the purview of the portal
enterprise as such).
IMPLEMENTATION

Implementation can occur in phases, providing access to information and systems that are now portal-ready, then
adding new systems as they become available. The student survey gives us an idea of how students would rank
existing and future applications. We have added to the student list other already-existing student systems and
websites of interest, and have organized them below:
Table 1: existing student systems that are CalNet ready (need only connector to be linked to portal),
together with informational links according to student choices available for first portal iteration
Table 2: existing systems which need to be migrated/upgraded to CalNet, together with systems now in
development through e-Berkeley initiative available for integration after migration/development
Table 3: List of desirable systems that are not currently under development, together with informational
links which need refining longer term options
Table 1

System

Currently
exists?

Uses
CalNet?

Currently
transactional?

Student
Rank
(Trans/
Info/Appl)

Library
(Pathfinder)

Yes

Yes

yes

T1

http://sunsite2.
berkeley.edu:8000/

Outside (auxillary) service; Okay for campus


image to "promote" this service?
students would like to see current CARS
balance on-line

Black
Lightning
notes
Bear Facts
Degree Audit
Report
System
(DARS)
Cal Student
Store
(bookstore)

url

Yes

Link

yes

T2

https://blln.securesites.
com/home/newhome.s
html

Yes

Yes

yes

T3

http://bearfacts.
berkeley.edu/

yes(Bear
Facts)

yes

Yes

Link

T3

yes

T4

http://bearfacts.
berkeley.edu/;
http://shop.efollett.com
/htmlroot/storehome/u
niversityofcaliforniaberkeley554.html

Comments

Currently on-line info request only

Can order books online through outside


vendor

21

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002


Financial Aid
Office -- online offer
letter

yes(Bear
Facts)

Yes

no

T5

Bay Area
Entertainment

Outside link

Link

no

I2

Need to allow outside custom links; should


the campus suggest a particular site?

Weather

Outside link

Link

no

I3

Need to allow outside custom links; should


the campus suggest a particular site?

Book Price
Comparison

outside link

Link

no

I4

Contract Implications with Cal Student Store;


allow custom outside links

Daily Cal

Yes

Link

no

I5

Political News

outside link

Link

no

I6

Need to allow outside custom links; should


the campus suggest a particular site?

Regional
News

outside link

Link

no

I7

Need to allow outside custom links; should


the campus suggest a particular site?

Need to allow outside custom links; should


the campus suggest a particular site?
Competition with our own career services?

External
Career
Services
Student
Associations
and clubs

Recreation
Parking and
Transportation
ASUC
Student
Referendums
On-Line
Class Pass
Online
Distribution
System

outside link

Link

no

I8

Uneven

Link

no

I9

outside link

Link

no

I10

Yes

Yes

yes

I14

Yes

yes

n/a

Yes

Yes

yes

n/a

http://bearfacts.
berkeley.edu/;

http://www.dailycal
.org/

various

Transactional Functionality in Development

Outside link

Students want through calendar/roles


database

Need to allow outside custom links; should


the campus suggest a particular site?
http://publicsafety.berkeley.edu
/p&t/
Students would also like to vote for
candidates on-line
https://classpass.
berkeley.edu:6204/

Table 2

System

Currently
exists?

Uses
CalNet
?

Online degree
verification

Yes

no

Summer Telebears

Yes

no

Currently
transactional
?

yes

Student
Rank
Trans/
Info/Appl

url

Comments

T3

http://infobears.berkeley.edu
:3400/degver/

uses Telebears PIN number

T3

http://wwwtelebears.berkeley.edu:3400/
summer/

uses Telebears PIN number and Advisor


Code

uses Telebears PIN number and Advisor


Code
Uses outside vendor for online resume
bank; uses its own userid/password

Telebears

Yes

No

yes

T3

http://wwwtelebears.berkeley.edu:3400/
telebears/

Campus Career
Services

Yes

No

yes

T6

http://career.berkeley.edu

22

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

T7

http://bearmail.berkeley.edu

Students/staff interested in having more


than their in-box available via web

no

I1

http://www.berkeley.edu/cal
endar/

Ideally populate a calendar rather than


current informational link

No

no

I13

Http://www.uhs.berkeley
.edu

Plans for on-line appointment


scheduling development

See
comme
nt

yes

A1

See comment

done through Bear Facts or Telebears -see below

Web-based email

Yes

No

UC Events

Yes

No

Yes

University Health
Service
Request transcripts,
enroll in
classes(Academic
Transactions online)
Learning
Management
System

Yes
In
developme
nt

Yes

A4

Table 3

System

Currently
exists?

Uses
CalNet?

Currently
transactional?

Student
Rank
(Trans/
Info/Appl
)

Departmental Advising and


News

Varies

no

no

I11

Central Campus Advising and


News
Declare major, intent to
graduate(Academic
Transactions online)
Calendaring system
Populated by Other
Systems/Student

Varies

no

no

I12

No

A1

No

A2

Calendaring system
Populated by Student

for staff

Online payment of CARS bills


(reg fees, housing)

No

no

yes

A2
A3

url

Comments

various

Various department homepages; some


departments have interactive sites

various

Central Campus news on UCB


homepage; information on central
campus pages (e.g. Registrar, Graduate
Division.)

involves development of electronic


signatures

http://calagenda.b
erkeley.edu

Cal Agenda
Transaction fee cost issue

For all existing, newly purchased or developed applications, it will be important to ask, Will it scale? and How
easy is it to integrate? For the student web portal to be optimally functional, it will also be important for the
campus to commit to a purchase or development of a content management system; developing an integrated roles
database populated (by systems, by staff, and/or by students themselves) with meaningful data about students; a
business process for departments and central units to supply and refresh content; a business process and guidance
for delivering all-campus or targeted notices to students; and training or consulting support for content providers,
be they staff or faculty.

23

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

Section V: Conclusions and Recommendations;


Criteria for Measuring Portal Success
While compiling and analyzing survey and interview data, we have come to the following conclusions, and have
formulated a few recommendations. These follow.
BUILD IT AND THEY WILL COME; REAP MULTIPLE BENEFITS

Although students and staff on campus ranked development of associated applications above the portal itself, 70% of
students welcome any technology which helps make their life easier. All other institutions surveyed reported positive
experiences and major benefits from the portal as well as considerable customer satisfaction with the results. It is our
belief that launching the portal early will reap multiple benefits:

Allow students to organize applications and information. Reports of instant high use of the student portal at
other institutions leads us to believe that Berkeley students will use a portal as well. There are already a number of
web-based applications at UCB, but not all students know about them, nor are they easy to find. Early launch of a
student portal would give all students a menu of whats available thereby informing them of possibilities, as
well as allowing them to include, exclude, and organize options in a way that makes sense to them.

Encourage development of standards, enabling integration of new applications as they develop. Portal
developers at other institutions report that the student portal engendered standards which made future integration of
new applications easier, and provided the impetus for upgrading legacy systems to fit into the new web-based
environment. There is considerable interest on campus in portal technology (evidenced by the MyHaas student
portal, the Alumni portal and the staff portal being rolled out with the Human Resources Management System). It is
important to make sure that independent efforts will be easy to include in a campus-wide system.

Focus campus-wide discussion and provide opportunity to engage in innovative work. There are several
innovative efforts underway on campus to do business online and to leverage technology to revolutionize teaching.
A campus-wide commitment to a student portal would lend a Chancellor-level imprimatur to these efforts. The
portal itself would make it easier to showcase new initiatives, and for students to use new applications as they
become available.

Build efficiency, synergy, and clear purpose. Creation of a student portal and a roles database would not only free
staff from repetitive and inefficient tasks, but could restructure the way business is conducted. This is particularly
important in a time when we expect increased enrollment without increases in staffing. Advising staff welcome the
idea of being able to send tailored messages to select populations (with a high probability of the recipients being
interested in the content because of their affiliations) and thus free up time for more in-depth, personal contact with
students. This same kind of synergy could play itself out in other arenas: if faculty teaching an interdisciplinary
course could invite students from many disciplines to participate, the class would be significantly enriched on the
basis of a diverse membership. Research collaborations might be fostered by being able to identify others on
campus having similar interests and like minds. Deploying a portal would also lend support to an integrated,
streamlined, collaboration between IT professionals on campus by providing them a clear framework and
consolidated goals.
SUPPORT CAMPUS GOALS

We believe that a student portal, with a roles database and integrated back-end systems, would further the following
campus goals:

Improve the undergraduate experience.

Build community.

Improve organizational effectiveness.


These goals overlap to a high degree and in provocative ways.
If by looking at the same student portal, a prospective student can learn about programs, professors, housing, and health
benefits; an entering student can enroll, pay for parking, and subscribe to student groups; a lower-division student can
make an appointment with the health service and review the slides from his/her Classics course; and an upper-division
student can see what to take in order to graduate in the time remaining, and make an appointment with his/her advisor;
all of the above goals would be furthered.

24

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

Staff could tailor messages to the right subset of students at the right time, and undergraduates would benefit they
would feel seen; receive timely and pertinent information; avoid standing in the wrong and/or long lines; use their time
more productively. Staff could use their in-person time with students to provide in-depth information and assistance;
reduce paper use; and rethink how their own work might be packaged most efficiently for sub-groups within their
student customer base.
If students and faculty can find other students and faculty having similar interests, irrespective of their school or
department, new communities can be built. A student portal has the potential to provide a way for scientists and
humanists, emeriti and undergraduates, commuters and residents, to find each other and talk.
ELEMENTS OF SUCCESS

DEVELOPMENT, DESIGN, MANAGEMENT

Content. The more students can manage their academic life and do business (academic, administrative, and
financial) on the portal, the more likely they are to use it. The portal is an entry point to the world of information
behind it. A student portal will be most effective in meeting campus goals if it is developed in conjunction with a
comprehensive roles database, an easy-to-use content management system, and an ever-increasing number of webbased student information systems.
Technology. The portal needs to be easy for students to use and to customize; easy for content providers to fill; and
fast, without compromising bandwidth for other campus endeavors. Security and privacy need to be maintained;
however, other institutions report that while crucial, security was not particularly difficult to ensure.
A work-in-progress. Building a portal isnt done just once. It needs to be put up, tried, and changed as new
applications come online and as the campus changes.
Resources and support. A portal doesnt have to be expensive. It does have to be supported in concept by the
highest level of administration and it needs steady and ongoing funding throughout its life. Content providers (both
staff and faculty) need training, consultation, and acknowledgment/reward for doing their jobs in new ways. Note:
Its very important to have a content management tool in place before the portal goes live.
Design. Technical expertise needs to be paired with expertise in communication and web design. Students, as the
primary users of a student portal, should be involved in discussions on content, look and feel, and navigation. As
one staff member notes, Whats attractive and useful to middle-aged me, might not be the best design for someone
in their 20s.
Management. In contact with other institutions, we did not discover that any one management model worked better
than others to the contrary, each management model seemed to reflect the culture of the organization more than
the nature of the project. It seems obvious to us, however, that the first step in developing a student portal is to
assign responsibility for internal campus communications and to support this assignment by establishing a
management team to bring together the many aspects of student portal development and deployment (e.g.,
technology, content, training and support, design, policy, procedures, etc.) Decision-making authority needs to be
assigned, and the process of implementation needs overall coordination.

CRITERIA FOR MEASURING SUCCESS OF A STUDENT PORTAL

While the portal could influence the campus in any number of positive ways, the primary criteria for measuring success
include:

Usage both the number of sessions and the number of hits on different channels

Student satisfaction measured using surveys or focus groups

System stability minimal down time, is reasonably fast, and does not impede existing network traffic.

Number of integrated systems number of back-end systems developed or integrated into the portal.
Other long-term markers of success include:

Students spending less time waiting in line.

Better quality in-person advising due to decreased in-person advising on basic issues.

Reduced staff burnout.

25

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

Section VI: Three Portal Interface Options for Look and Feel;
Criteria for Evaluating Options
We have mocked up three options for how a student portal might look. Each of these options illustrates a combination of
two major themes: how a student might organize their portal page, and how the portal software might structure content.
All options show several general features:

administrative systems, ranked number one on the student survey: CourseWeb, TeleBears, BearFacts, Library,
Office of the Registrar, Parking & Transportation;

a personalized calendar, ranked number two by students;

a cameo, to illustrate the potential of a notification box showing personalized and updated information;

links to UCB home, Help, WebMail, Campus Directory, Search, and Customize, and no back button per student
request;

general subject headings within mini-screens to sort together like information.


The three options show

different links, to illustrate that different students will have different interests;

similar information positioned differently between options, demonstrating that different students will prioritize
information differently;

different navigation schemes (e.g., tab, columnar, etc.);

different decisions on the existence of locked-down channels.


OPTION

1 (see next page)

Jane Bear is here for fun. Her personal links include rock climbing and parties. She has chosen to put these links and
todays weather at the top of her page, and put the links to her classes further down.
This option is modeled on the University of Washingtons student portal. The information on the portal is organized
using tabs for navigation; there are no mandatory channels; channels appear in boxes organized in columnar format.
Note: some user interfaces pre-set the tabs, while others allow each tabbed page to be customizable by the user.
Pros of Option 1

Tabs allow users to see a series of compact screens, rather than one long screen. Some users will prefer this
compactness.

Interface scalability: as more online content becomes available, it is relatively simple to add new tabs to
accommodate and organize new content.

If students can name the tabbed screens and customize their content, students would have maximum flexibility to
organize information as they see fit. For instance, some might create tabs by type of information; others by how
frequently they need access to information; or by some other principle of their own choosing.

Even if all of the tabbed screens are created and named by the institution, tabs would still allow students to toggle
quickly between different types of information.

There could be a mixture of user-defined and mandatory (locked-down) tabs. The latter give the University another
way of delivering mandatory information to students.
Cons of Option 1

A tab-based interface necessitates that students use a separate customization tool to create and/or manage content.
This is arguably less convenient than a static menu bar, which allows the user to see all content options on the same
screen as the content itself at all times.

If the separate customization tool is not easy to use, students may not take full advantage of all that the portal has to
offer, since they may overlook some options.

26

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

Portal Option 1

27

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002


OPTION

2 (see next page)

This Jane Bear is homesick. She has put the links to her courses at the top of her page, together with access points to
Black Lightning Notes, the Bookstore, and the Library. Janet is also homesick. Her daily calendar reminds her to call
Mom and shows weather information for her hometown, Wichita Kansas.
Option 2 is modeled on the MyHaas student portal. There are no tabs for navigation; information is organized into
columns and students use the Customize link at the top of the page to determine which channels will appear, and to
select their order. There are no mandatory channels.
Pros of Option 2

High level of customization for the user, who can determine what elements to put on their personal portal page, and
where on the page they should be displayed.

Users who prefer a very busy web page can choose to display a lot of channels, whereas those who prefer a very
uncluttered web page can choose to display fewer.
Cons of Option 2

Users must choose between less information or a more cluttered look.

Users who want to display a large number of channels and links will also have a very long page to scroll through in
order to see all of the items.

This interface requires students to use a separate customization tool to create and/or manage content on their pages.
This is less convenient than a static menu bar which allows the user to see all of the content options on the same
screen as the content itself.

If a separate customization tool is not easy to use, students may not take full advantage of all that the portal has to
offer, since they may overlook some options.

28

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

Portal Option 2

29

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002


OPTION

3 (see next page)

This Jane Bear is focused on course work and her career prospects. CourseWeb, Library, and Bookstore appear near
the top of her page, together with the Career Center and various student groups and associations such as Leaders in
Training.
Option 3 is modeled on the UCLA student portal. The left-hand navigation column is static it displays all the options
available to students via the portal, organized in categories. The right-hand column changes to reflect the students
selections from the navigation column. The Campus Alert box at the top of the screen is an example of a locked-down
channel it would appear on every students portal.
Pros of Option 3

This model does not require a separate customization tool. Rather, all content options are displayed at all times and
the student can get to a not-often used item without looking into a background document.

Since all options are displayed at all times, students might be more likely to take full advantage of all that the portal
has to offer.

Content providers can be assured that their content category exists as they will see it on the static menu bar.

The static menu bar makes it easy to explain to users how and where to find specific information.
Cons of Option 3

Makes the screen very long; many students do not like to have to scroll down.

Users cannot change the menu bar, which may contain links and channels of no interest to them.

CRITERIA FOR EVALUATING OPTIONS

Ease of use: How intuitive is each possible user interface for the average user?

Level of customization: How easily does each user interface lend itself to customization? In general, we believe
developers should strive for the highest possible level of customization.

Accessibility: How well does each user interface lend itself to meeting the needs of those with disabilities?

Performance: Do some of the different user interfaces offer a higher level of performance than the others, either
from a system bandwidth perspective, or from the perspective of users with slower, older computers?

Information: Does the customization tool provide easy access to all potential sources of information in an easy and
comprehensive way?

30

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

Portal Option 3

31

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

Section VII: Portal Names


When we raised the issue of name with on-campus interviewees, many of them advised us to duck. Taking
this counsel to heart, we provide here our top five favorite names. A compiled list of ideas we heard from
students, faculty, and staff is included in Appendix XXII.

MyCal
BearEssentials
Sather Gateway
CalWeb
OskiOnline

32

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

APPENDICES

33

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

Appendix I Definitions
Applications, application programs

A complete, self-contained program that performs a


specific function directly for the user. This is in
contrast to system software such as the operating
system, server software, etc. which exists to support
application programs. See Enterprise Application,
below.

Authentication

The verification of the identity of a person or


process. In a communication system, authentication
verifies that messages really come from their stated
source, like the signature on a (paper) letter.

Authorization

Allows a person access to a particular system or


process, after their identity has been authenticated.

Back end systems

Enterprise applications transparent to the customer,


who connects to them via the web portal. For
example, a student web portal would provide a front
end system through which students could connect to
a back end system, such as Telebears.

CalNet ID

A unique identifier (currently student or employee ID


number), associated with a secret passphrase, which
provides for authentication, authorization and
information lookup.

Cameo

A channel which provides a user with a real-time


snapshot of a particularly useful or time-sensitive
piece of information or data from an external
application or system, without having to go directly
to the external application or system. For example, a
cameo might display how much money a student has
on their meal debit card.

Channel, locked down channels

A means of organizing similar types of information


for purposes of delivering them through a web portal.
For example, a Financial Aid channel might consist
of links to all transactional systems associated with
the process of applying for and receiving financial
aid (internal campus applications as well as external
ones, such as the online application to complete the
Free Application for Federal Student Aid form), plus
links to purely informational websites (eg.
Scholarship search engines).
A locked down channel is any channel which all
users, or all users of a given type, are required to see,
and which they cannot remove from their personal
portal page.

Enterprise application

An application is a complete, self-contained program


that performs a specific function directly for the user.

34

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

An enterprise application is a program which


performs functions central to the business of an
organization. An example at UC Berkeley is
Telebears, which students use to register for their
courses.
FERPA

Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, the


federal statute governing the disclosure of
information from student records.

Freeware

Software, often written by enthusiasts and distributed


at no charge by users' groups. Freeware should not
be confused with free software (roughly, software
with unrestricted redistribution) or shareware
(software distributed without charge for which users
can pay voluntarily). The uPortal framework (see
below) is being developed by a consortium of
universities, and is thus freeware.

JA-SIG

Java in Administration Special Interest Group, a


consortium of universities working together to
develop a common portal reference platform. See
freeware, above, and uPortal, below.

J2EE

Java 2 Platform, Enterprise Edition. Sun


Microsystems Java-language platform for serveroriented enterprise applications, ie. applications
(servers) which provide some service to other
applications (clients) by passing messages over a
network, using a protocol to encode the clients
requests and the servers responses.

Kerberos

Kerberos is an authentication system, developed at


MIT, whose main purpose is to allow people and
processes to prove their identity in a reliable manner
over an insecure network, without transmitting secret
passwords in the clear, where they may be
intercepted and read by unauthorized parties.
Kerberos is the established authentication standard
for UC Berkeley enterprise applications.

LDAP

Lightweight Directory Access Protocol. A protocol


for accessing on-line directory services. LDAP
defines a relatively simple protocol for updating and
searching directories over the internet.

Legacy system

An existing enterprise application that would need to


be made compatible with a student web portal. This
bit of industry jargon often carries a negative
connotation, implying that the existing system
continues to be used because of the high cost of
replacing or redesigning it, despite its poor
performance and incompatibility with modern
equivalents. However we have used the term in a
less pejorative fashion, to refer to pre-existing
campus enterprise applications, regardless of whether

35

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

they have performance or compatibility issues


associated with them.
Portal

A website which provides clients with a single,


intuitive, and personalized gateway to information
stored in local databases and systems, as well as
externally stored information. See Student web
portal, below.

Roles database

A database containing user-specific information.


Various attributes are associated with each user
name. In the context of a portal, these attributes can
in turn be used to determine whether an authenticated
user will be allowed to access specific enterprise
applications, or subscribe to specific channels. They
can also be used to identify students of like type, in
order to push information to a specific set of
students (eg., all entering undergraduate community
college transfer students, or all second-year law
students).

Shareware

Software for which the author requests some form of


voluntary payment. Such payment may buy
additional support, documentation or functionality.

Student web portal

The Berkeley student portal would provide students


with access to external websites, as well as online
campus services, websites, and course information
from one convenient location, using a single user ID
and password. Students would be able to customize
the portal to their own liking, adding or deleting links
to internal websites, internal news channels aimed at
particular groups of students, and external
information such as sports, weather, entertainment,
etc.

uPortal

Portal development software created by a consortium


of universities developing a common portal platform.
See freeware and JA-SIG, above.

User interface (i.e., UI)

The aspects of a computer system or program which


can be seen (or heard or otherwise perceived) by the
human user, and the commands and mechanisms the
user uses to control its operation and input data.

36

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

Appendix II Respondents
STUDENTS

This report reflects input from students collected at two different times
1. student focus groups conducted in the Spring of 2001 by the UGA Divisional Computing Resources
office, with responses from 44 participants representing all levels and colleges and a wide variety of
majors, and
2. our survey conducted in Spring 2002, with responses from 284 students reached through the following
groups:

The March 2002 meeting of the Graduate Assembly (ca. 30 attendees)

Three discussion sections for the course BA 10 (ca. 120 students)

A lecture of the course PH 103 (ca. 120 students)

A discussion section for the course ED 198 (ca. 12 students)

Sexual health peer educators at University Health Service (ca. 20 students)

Student health advisory group at University Health Service (ca. 10 students)

Residence Halls health worker coordinator team (ca. 10 students)

Residence Halls advisors group (ca. 27 students)

Letters & Science peer advisors group (ca. 8 students)

ASUC interns group (ca. 18 students)


For survey results, see the Appendices.
FACULTY / ADMINISTRATORS / STAFF

We conducted one-on-one interviews with administrators, staff, and faculty; conducted focus groups at the
11th Annual Conference on Advising, Counseling & Mentoring; and provided surveys to the Advising
Conference and some of our interviewees. Altogether we collected ninety-four responses. Responses have
been compiled in separate Appendices.
Faculty we spoke with:

Leonard Duhl, Professor, Public Health and Urban Planning

Mark G. Kubinec, Director of Digital Chem1A, and Lecturer of Chemistry

Stephen Miller, Professor, Classics

Panayiotis Papadopoulos, Associate Professor, Mechanical Engineering

Philip Stark, Professor of Statistics and Faculty Assistant to Vice Provost Christina Maslach

Garrison Sposito, Director, Kearney Foundation of Soil Science

Elaine Tennant, Professor, German

Ruth Tringham, Professor, Anthropology

Alan Weinstein, Professor, Mathematics


Colleagues on campus recommended that the following faculty would be good to include in future discussions
on this topic:

Rutie Adler, Lecturer, Near Eastern Studies

Ani Adhikari, Visiting Lecturer, Statistics

Americ Azevedo, Lecturer, Engineering

George Chang, Associate Professor, Nutritional Sciences

Mike Clancy, Senior Lecturer, Electrical Engineering & Computer Science

Margaret Conkey, Professor, Anthropology

Deborah Nolan, Professor, Statistics

Alex Pines, Professor, Chemistry and Principal Investigator, LBNL

Kris Pister, Electrical Engineering & Computer Science


37

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

Paul Ruud, Professor, Economics


Francoise Sorgen-Goldschmidt, Lecturer, French
Paul Wright, Professor, Mechanical Engineering

Staff and Administrators we spoke with:

Renato Almanzor, Associate Director, Office of Student Life

Doug Au, Web Communication Coordinator, Summer Sessions

Richard Black, Assistant Vice Chancellor, Admissions and Enrollment

Pamela Burnett, Director, Office of Undergraduate Admissions

Greg Brown, Assistant Vice Chancellor of Finance, and Controller

Susanna Castillo-Robson, Registrar

Lisa Chow, Business Manager, Student Information Systems

Jon Conhaim, Director, e-Berkeley

Russ Connacher, Information Systems, L&S Undergrad Advising

Tom Devlin, Director, Career Center

Victor Edmonds, Director, Educational Technology

Glenda Freberg, Assistant Manager, Business Services Payroll

Elizabeth Gillis, Campus Community Project Coordinator

Tim Heidinger, Manager, Undergraduate Affairs Computing

Chris Hoffman, Computer Resource Manager, Graduate Division

Tom Holub, Director of Computing Services, L&S

Bernard Hurley, Director, Library Technologies

Gail Kaufman, Director, School & University Partnerships

Karen Kenney, Dean of Students, Office of Student Life

Leslie Leonard, Assistant Dean, Letters & Science

Kimberly Longwell, Business Services Loans and Receivables

Mindy Lopez, Business Services Loans and Receivables

Steve Lustig, Assistant Vice Chancellor, University Health and Counseling Services

Jack McCredie, Associate Vice Chancellor, IS&T

Ralph Moon, Director of Library Systems

Barbara Morgan, Director of Strategic Planning Technology

Je Nell Padilla, Research Analyst, Residential & Student Services

Gary Penders, Director, Summer Sessions

Nad Permaul, Director, Transportation

Jeffrey A. Reimer, Professor and Associate Dean, Graduate Division

Cheryl Resh, Director, Financial Aid Office

Maria Rubinshteyn, Director, Office of Marketing & Management of Trademarks

J.R. Schulden, Director, Student Information Systems

Genevieve Shiffrar, Web Manager, L&S

Joyce Sturm, Manager, Business Services Cashiers Office


The following units were also named as important stakeholders, and might be considered for future input:

Alumni Association

Athletics & Recreational Sports

Business Services (Director)

Cal Performances

CALSO especially to hear their input re student orientation

Disabled Students Program

Housing & Dining Services, Manger for Systems Development

Police Department, Chief of Police

Re-entry Program
38

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

Student Research, Director


UC Extension

PORTAL DEVELOPERS

A detailed questionnaire was developed to investigate the process portal providers at other institutions have
undergone in the conception, design, implementation and management of their portals. Responses were
gathered either by email return of the questionnaire or by phone interview, from the following nine academic
institutions:
Stanford Universitys Stanford Enterprise Portal
Susan Empey , Information Technology Systems and Services and
Ross Davisson, CEO, Stanford Student Enterprises

University of British Columbias MyUBC


Ted Dodds and Dave Frazer, Information Technology

UC Berkeley, HAAS School of Business MyHaas


Teresa Costantinidis & Zane Cooper

UC Daviss MyUCDavis
Joyce Johnstone and Brian Alexander
Information & Educational Technology Information Resources

UC Irvines SNAP (Simple Navigational Administrative Portal)


Marina Arseniev, AdCom Services

University of California, Los Angeles


Eric Splaver, IT Director

University of Minnesota
Bob Kvavik, Office of Exec VP
Kari Branjord, Director of Web Development

University of Texas at Austin


Randy Ebeling and Shan Evans, Information Systems Technology

University of Washingtons MyUW


Ed Lightfoot, Director, Information Systems

39

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

Appendix III Student Survey Instrument


Berkeley is considering building a web portal for students. The portal would provide students with access to online campus
services, websites, and course information from one convenient location, using a single user ID and password. Students would also
be able to customize the portal to their own liking, adding or deleting links to internal websites, internal news channels aimed at
particular groups of students, and external information such as sports, weather, entertainment, etc.
As part of that effort we are interested in knowing what you would like to see the portal look like. We will pass your input on to the
campus portal development team. Thank you for taking the time to complete this survey.
1.

Are you a/n:


Undergraduate ( Lower-division; Upper-division)
Graduate Student

2.

What college/school are you enrolled in?

3.

Have you ever used a web portal before? (e.g.. My Yahoo [http://my.yahoo.com/];
My Netscape [http://my.netscape.com/index2.psp])
Yes No I dont know

4.

Which of the following campus offices do you interact with on a regular basis? (Please check all that apply):
Registrar (class registration, fees, class schedules, etc.)
Financial Aid (grants, loans, fellowships, scholarships)
Central academic advising (at the College/School/Graduate Division level)
Academic advising in your home department
University Health Services
Library
Housing & Dining
Book store
Transportation/Parking
Student Government
Student Associations/Clubs
Campus Career Services
Recreation (Intercollegiate Athletics, Rec Sports, Cal performances, etc.)
Other (please list):

5.

Which of the following links would you like to access through your portal? (Please check all that apply):
Sports
Political news
Financial news
Regional news (by country or world region)
Consumer news (fashion, travel, health, etc.)
Weather
Bay Area entertainment (art, theater, concerts)
UC events (public lectures, concerts, Cal sports)
Daily Cal
Comics
On-line stores
Bay Area rentals
Travel
Black Lightning Notes
On-line Campus Chat Groups
External Career Services (e.g.. Monster.com [http://monster.com/], hotjobs [www.hotjobs.com],
Craigs List [http://www.craigslist.org/])
Book Price Comparison Engines (e.g.Best Book Buys [http://www.bestwebbuys.com/books/])
Groupware (software designed for users to collaborate via the Internet and/or a local intranet)
Other (please list):

6.

Which of the following services would you most like the campus to provide through the web? (Please check all that apply):

40

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002


Calendaring (ability to keep track of your academic and financial deadlines, class schedule, appointments etc. through
a single website)
Financial transactions on-line (payment of fees, parking fees & tickets, bookstore
transactions, etc.)
Academic transactions on-line (requests for major/minor, request for transcripts/diplomas, check up on required
courses for college/major/minor, electronic advising options, enrollment in classes, etc.)
This Student Web Portal
Learning Management System (not simply websites with instructor biographies, etc, but also timed release of
assignments, archives of past exams, course notes, discussion boards, etc.)
Other (please describe):
7.

Web portals typically include a few required items or links that a user cannot remove from their portal page. Which of the
following do you think should be required? (Please check all that apply):
News from the Registrars office
News from the Financial Aid office
News from your College, School or Department
News from the Cashiers office
General Campus News
None of the above
Other: _________________________________

8.

If the Berkeley student web portal offered a mix of the features listed in questions 4-7, would it make your campus life
easier?
Yes No Not sure

9.

Assume the campus has a limited budget that allows the implementation of one system each year. Please rank order the
following systems in order of importance to you.
a.

______ Calendaring (ability to keep track of your academic and financial deadlines, class schedule,
appointments, etc. through a single website)

b.

______ Financial transactions on-line (payment of fees, parking fees & tickets, bookstore transactions,
etc.)

c.

______ Academic transactions on-line (requests for major/minor, request for transcripts/diplomas, check
up on required courses for college/major/minor, electronic advising options, enrollment in classes, etc.)

d.

______ This Student Web Portal

e.

______ Learning Management System (not simply websites with instructor biographies, etc, but also timed
release of assignments, archives of past exams, course notes, discussion boards, etc.)

f.

______ Other (please describe):

10. If you could name the UC Berkeley student web portal, what name would you choose?

11. Do you want to add anything not covered in this questionnaire?

41

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

Appendix IV Staff, Faculty, Administrator


One-on-One Interview Questions
What do you mean by portal?
What problems would a student portal help to address?
What goals might the portal facilitate?
What might the potential benefits of a student portal be to students?
What gains might a portal achieve for academic/instructional life?
What administrative potential might a portal have?
What might the institution gain?
What are the essential features of a student portal?
Other are the elements of success for a student portal?
How does a student portal rank among other possible investments?
Concerns about a student portal?
What applications/links should be included?
Who should be involved in design?
Who owns the project?
Who decides on content?
Who should manage/be responsible for the technology?
Who should be involved in the high-level image?
Who should be involved in policy making and determining the administrative processes and policies?
What criteria should be used for measuring/evaluating portal success?
Things we didnt ask?

42

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

Appendix V Staff Focus Group Questions


What information do students need to be successful?
What information do you have to communicate to your students?
What are the most common questions you get from students?
What information is hardest for students to find?
If we build a portal, what would attract students?
We are interested in improving the sense of community for undergraduate studentshow could the student
portal contribute to this effort?

43

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

Appendix VI Staff, Faculty, and Administrator Survey Instrument


Berkeley is considering building a web portal for students. The portal would provide students with access to online campus
services, websites, and course information from one convenient location, using a single user ID and password. Students would also
be able to customize the portal to their liking, adding or deleting links (e.g. to internal web sites: internal news channels; and
external information such as sports, weather, entertainment, etc.)
As someone who is committed to making students successful, the campus is interested in your input concerning the portal.
Thank you for taking the time to complete this survey.
Please turn in your completed survey at the registration desk during the Conference.

Your Name(optional):
Position:

,
, Dept.:

1. You primarily serve:


Undergraduates
Graduate students
All Students
2. Do you currently provide information to your students?(check all that apply)
via e-mail
via Web site
via on-line interactive system (students submit or change information directly on the web)
via unit/departmental portal (customizable student gateway as described at top of page)
via other electronic means(please describe)
_________________________________________________________
3. Does your department have an individual designated to gather and post content on the web?
no
yes
More than one person
4. How often do you update the information provided on your web page if you have one?
daily
2-4 times per week
weekly
semi-monthly

monthly or less often


not applicable
not sure (please check the box for your best guess)

5. How often do you update the content on your interactive system(s) if you have one?
interacts with live
data
daily
2-4 times per
week
weekly

semi-monthly
monthly or less often
not applicable
not sure (please check the box for your best guess)

6. If you had a channela way to provide direct links to your information or web-based systems on the
student portal, would you update your on-line content more often?
yes
no
7. How important is each of the following features of a portal? (please circle):

44

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

Most-----------------------Least
5

Single log-on to all campus systemsonly one password student

"One-Stop Shopping" all student systems through one gateway

Easy opt-out and opt-in to channels of campus information

Student customizable appearance (layout, color schemes)

Web access to UCLink email through portal log-on

Integration of Berkeley and outside web information (news, weather, etc)

Ability to publish information campus news, deadlines, etc to all students

Consistent design and navigation standards for Berkeley campus

8. How important is each of the following applications or content to provide on a student web portal?(please
circle):
Most----------Least

Academic Functions

5 4

course catalog descriptions

5 4

Course times and locations

5 4

Quiz/Exam times and


locations

5 4

class syllabi

5 4

email communication with


faculty

5 4

book lists

5 4

faculty office hours

5 4

degree audit (DARS)

5 4

schedule advising
appointment

5 4

Library (catalogs, renewal)

5 4

Black Lightning lecture


notes

5 4

discussion boards

5 4

practice exams

Most---------Least
5 4

5 4

Financial Aid
information/processes

5 4

Telebears/registration

5 4

Career Center

5 4

schedule health service


appointments

Administrative Functions
1

BearFacts
45

LDP Student Portal Project, May 22, 2002

Most---------Least

Financial Transactions

5 4

Pay registration fees

5 4

buy sports tickets

5 4

buy Cal Performance tickets

5 4

pay fees

5 4

eParking

5 4

buy books online

Most---------Least

Scheduling/News/Community
Events

5 4

interactive calendar

5 4

campus news and campus


events

5 4

on-line Campus chat groups

5 4

local news/weather/sports

5 4

Bay area housing links

5 4

External Career Services

Most---------Least

Others

5 4

Link to favorite external


website

5 4

Other____________________
____

5 4

Other____________________
____

46

9. Given that UC Berkeley has a limited budget, in what order would you develop the following
systems in order to give the maximum benefit to students?:
______ Calendaring (would allow faculty and staff to post pertinent information and students to post
their own items)
______ Financial transactions on-line (payment of registration fees, parking fees, bookstore
transactions, etc.)
______ Academic transactions on-line (requests for major/minor, request for transcripts/diplomas,
check up on required courses for college/major/minor, electronic advising options, enrollment in
classes, etc.)
______ This Student Web Portal
______ Learning Management System (course descriptions, instructor information, class schedules,
timed release of assignments, archives of past exams, course notes, discussion boards, etc)
_____ Other (please describe):
10. What are the main benefits of implementing a student web portal at Berkeley(please check all that
apply)
Students spend less time waiting in lines; less student traffic in office
Students receive targeted information so they feel more like an individual
We can more effectively communicate with targeted groups of students
Advisors have more time to spend with students who need in-person service
UC Berkeley community and image are communicated consistently
Students have better information about where to go for services
Less time spent by staff/faculty answering questions that are already answered on a Berkeley web
site
Significant increase on the number of hits on the unit/department Web site
Unsure of any benefits
Other:
11. Any major problems you foresee with implementing a portal?
________________________________________________
12. If you could name the UC Berkeley student web portal, what name would you choose?
___________________________
13. Do you want to add anything not covered in this questionnaire?

Appendix VII Portal Developer Questionnaire


Date of interview:

LDP interviewer: ___________________

Name of Portal:

Portal URL:

Institution:

(# of students

Contact name:

Department/Unit:

Contact phone:

Contact email:

, staff__ , faculty_____)

GENERAL INFORMATION
1.

Was the portal project part of an institution-wide strategic plan, or was it a discrete, stand-alone project?

2.

When did your portal go live?

3.

Does the portal serve only students?

Yes;

No

STUDENT PORTAL GOALS


4.

How did you identify the need to introduce a student portal?

5.

How did you gather information to corroborate this decision?


surveys (students, administrators, faculty, combination?)

interviews (students, administrators, faculty,

combination?)

focus groups (students, administrators, faculty, combination?)

Other (describe)

Do you have documents you could share?


6.

How did you define success for the portal project before you began?

DESIGN PROCESS
7.

What were the top 3 requests made by students?


i. Format (color scheme, apps. order, tab order, etc.): a.
ii. Functionality (on-line registration, buying books, calendar, etc.): a.

; b.

; c.
; b.

; c.

8.

What were the 3 main issues you were concerned about in the design phase?
a.

9.

; b.

; c.

What industry or university portals did you review/consider during the design stage?

10. What were the 3 top reasons you chose the portal design that won out?
a.

; b.

; c.

11. Did you have user involvement in the design phase?


Yes (please describe):

No

No

No (go to 19)

12. Did you have user testing of a beta product or a pilot program?
Yes (please describe):
VENDOR INTERACTION
13. Did you purchase a software package?
14. If yes, why?

Yes;

No (go to 15)

Shareware:

What package?

15. Did you use an outside vendor in the implementation phase?


Yes (name):

16. Why did you decide to use an outside vendor? (lack of inside manpower and/or expertise, vendor continuing service capabilities,
costs, etc.)

17. How many people from your institution/department were involved alongside the vendor?
18. How did you find the interaction with the vendor?
19. Is an outside vendor providing ongoing services after the implementation phase?

Yes;

No (go to 21)

20. If yes, what services? How do you find this interaction?


21. Does a vendor host the portal for the institution?

Yes;

No (go to 23)

22. If yes, how does this work (in view of FERPA laws, etc)
23. If NO outside vendor was used, how many people (and from which units) were involved in the implementation?

24. How long did it take to implement the portal?

COSTS
25. What are the: (0-100K; 100K-250K; 250K-500K; 500K-1MIL; over 1MIL)
One-time costs: $____________

Ongoing costs: $______________ , or

26. Do students pay fees for the portal?

Yes;

Ballpark total costs: $

No; If yes, how much? $

27. Do service providers, or different departments, share costs for the portal?
28. Do you defray costs by allowing advertisements on the portal?

(per semester/year)

Yes;

Yes;

No

No

PORTAL FUNCTIONALITY & CUSTOMIZATION


29. Does your institution have more than one portal?
30. If yes, are they integrated?
31. Is your portal

Yes;

Yes;

No (go to 31)

Several, but not all;

institution/enterprise-wide

No

college/department-based

Other

32. What level of portal services does your system provide:


a.

Static (Web Pages)

Yes;

No

b.

Interactive (enrollment in classes, registration, etc)

c.

Transaction (bookstore, donations, payment of fees, etc)

d.

End-to-end capabilities (full integration of all university information, records, transactions, e-collaborations, etc)

Yes;

No
Yes;

No

No
33. Does the portal provide single log-on?
34. If yes,

Yes;

No (go to 35)

a) have you had any security problems/concerns?


b) have you encountered problems with the other systems being integrated with the single log-on?

35. Does your portal have role-based authentication/authorization levels?


36. How many applications does your system include?

set #

Yes;

No
open-ended

37. How did you decide what capabilities to include if the system is not completely open-ended?
38. Is the system able to expand, integrate new features, upgrade, provide wireless service?
39. What options do students have for customizing their screen?

Yes;

i. Completely free content choice

Yes;

No

ii. Access to off-campus systems/applications?


iii. Several non-removable channels

Yes;

Yes;

No

No

iv. If no, did you consider and discard idea? Why?


v. Aesthetics (colors, buttons, sequence of tabs, order of applications)

Yes;

No

40. Has the portal had any effect on development of new enterprise applications?
Yes (examples):

No

41. Do you record higher levels of usage on enterprise application that pre-date the introduction of the portal
No
USAGE
42. Do you have a mechanism built into the portal that tracks usage?

Yes;

No

43. What percentage of students currently use the portal?


44. What are the top 3 hot applications (most hits)?
a.

; b.

; c.

45. What mechanism(s) for user (students, content providers, others) feedback do you have?
46. How did you market the student portal?
47. How soon after implementation did students begin to use the portal?
TECHNICAL MANAGEMENT
48. Who is responsible for the overall technical management of the portal?
49. Who is involved in its technical maintenance?

; How many staff: #

50. Who is involved in further developing the system?

; How many staff: #

CONTENT MANAGEMENT
51. What office/committee/executive is responsible for general portal content?
52. Do you have content provider standards for information included in the portal?
Yes (describe):

No (go to 54)

Yes;

53. If yes, how do you enforce these standards and ensure they are maintained over time?
54. Who is involved in providing portal content?

; How many staff (ballpark) #

PROBLEM IDENTIFICATION (IF ANY)


55. What are the 3 major technical difficulties you have experienced?
a.

, b.

, c.

56. What are the 3 major content management difficulties you have experienced?
a.

, b.

, c.

57. Did the project encounter any political difficulties?


PORTAL EVALUATION ISSUES & AFTERTHOUGHTS
58. Have you done a formal evaluation of the portal project after the roll-out?

Yes;

No (go to 60)

59. If yes, can you share top 3 findings?


a.

, b.

, c.

Can you share part(s) or all of the evaluation document(s) with us?
60. To what degree has the portal meet your goals?

Completely,

Mostly,

Somewhat

61. What were the 3 key elements of the portal that helped you meet your goals?
a.

, b.

, c.

62. List 3 ways in which the portal did not meet some of your goals/expectations?
a.

, b.

, c.

63. What benefits do portal users (students, content providers, faculty, staff, administrators) report?
64. If you could go through the implementation of a portal again, what would be the 3 main things you would change?
a.

, b.

Other people you think we should speak with:


Name:
Institution/Unit:
Portal:

, c.

Email/Phone:

Appendix VIII UGA Focus Group Raw Data,


CAREER CENTER PEER ADVISORS
Please give us your overall impression of the look and feel of the portals you visited
The University Of Washington portal is good.
It is streamlined.
I was able to access the schedule of classes.
I have mixed feelings about headlines (information being pushed at me)
News headlines are good.
Weather and traffic news is good.
It should be up to us to choose the headlines.
Aesthetics is important.
I should be able to decide how information is displayed.
UC Davis portal is professional looking.
UCLA portal looks cluttered.
UC Davis portal is the most efficient.
Color customizing is important
UC Davis portal was my favorite.
What you would like to do on your new student portal?
The portal should be a service to students.
Should display Bay Area events
Should display seminars for freshmen
I should be able to click on something to ask questions
Should display student organizations
Should display campus events
Should access the staff and department directories
Should provide a scholarship directory
Should display CARS account
Should display my loan information
It should have a good search engine, like Google.
Should display the General Catalogue.
Should display the Schedule of Classes.
Should provide housing information/resources on campus and in Berkeley.
Should link to e-Housing, Rental Solutions.
Should provide jobs listings.
Should access the academic calendar.
I should be able to pay my fees.
I should be able to request a diploma on-line.
I should be able to access book vendors and compare prices on-line.
I should be able to check book buy-back prices on the portal.
There should be class chat rooms.
The course syllabus should be available.
You should require all teachers to have course websites.
Questions/Concerns:
Will we be forced to see headlines?
What about cache size?
What about space issues?
Bandwidth issues?
Will BearFacts, Bearlink and others still run? Seems redundant

What will the logon page look like?


Will there be a cost for the portal?

INTERNATIONAL & AREA STUDIES PEER ADVISORS


Please give us your overall impression of the look and feel of the portals you visited
The UCLA portal looks like Yahoo.
The UCLA portal is too cluttered
The UCLA portal layout is not friendly
I dont like having information pushed at me.
The portal should have a search engine like Google
The portal should be easy to use
It has to be easy to search
What you would like to do on your new student portal?
Id like to have access to the syllabus for my classes.
Id like to have my reading lists show up.
Id like to see the professors biographies.
You should encourage all professors to post course information on the web.
I hate logging into many separate systems.
There should only be one login and one password.
There should be a master calendar system.
You should require all classes to be online.
Class syllabus, reading lists, exams should be online.
Class websites should be standardized.
University web pages should be standardized.
The title of the web page and the content should match?
I should be able to plan my schedule online
It should display fun stuff
Id need storage space
I would like space to write and store my papers
Id like to check my accounts online.
Id like to check my status online (registration, financial aid)
Id like to fill out forms online (apply to major, declare major)
Id like to have easy access to scholarships

Did you know that there is a scholarships website?


No
I dont want to have to look for it.
It should display Berkeley housing (campus and off campus)
I would like to locate transportation
Id like access to the BART schedule/bus schedule
Id like to pay my bills
Id like to buy my books
You should use our student ID as a money system
Id like fast access to my library account
Id like more classes online (distance learning)
You should use a card swipe system to food, books, getting information, dorms, buying stuff.
Would you still want the portal if there were a fee for it?
Yes, as long as it was reasonable
Yes, it is an invaluable too to save me time
Yes, the bureaucracy is to big and the portal would save me time.
As a public university, Berkeley is still cheaper and anything to cut the bureaucracy is good.

What else can you think of that youd like the portal to offer, or that it might help you with?
Id like to schedule appointments online
I think the TeleBEARS times are not good. I would like to pre-select my classes with alternates. When my
TeleBEARS time comes up, the system should automatically enroll me or place me on the wait list.
Questions/Concerns:
Are there going to be limits on what I can have?
Will BearFacts and BearLink go away?
How secure is it?

CalSO COUNSELORS
What are your overall impressions of the portals you visited?
UCLA portal has a fixed display, it should be scaleable.
The portal should allow me to get entertainment information
Sports
Campus activities
Weather
personal links
News
There should have separate tabs for these
The portal should help me to be efficient as a student and help me to do what I need to do
Tie to uclink account
lectures online
Visiting speakers
schedule of classes
get email on the web
better search engine (google)
Campus events
ASUC
student groups
course websites
General catalogue
BearLink
Tie to Palm Pilot
Personalized calendar
Daily Cal
Newspapers
News headlines search for people
Academic calendar
my final exam schedule
link final exam schedule to my class schedule
Declare my major
View CARS account
view my grades
telephone directory (alpha list)
Keep me informed (post it notes)
push info (with opt-out feature) Campus master calendar with ability to add my personal items

How important is the look and feel of the portal to you?


It should be highly customizable
it should have adjustable templates
It should have fixed templates
I should be able to build my own template
It needs to be very safe
It should only require one login and one password
I prefer one password for all systems
I have so many passwords I forget them
It should merge all my passwords into all systems so I only have to use one
It should have different security levels: CARS, grades should require heavier security
It should use SSL for security
I should be able to choose to save my password
No pre-checked boxes
I should be able to opt-out of things
Walk us through a typical day and tell us how a portal could help you. How often would you check it?
Id like to check it throughout the day
Id like to check local entertainment
Id like to check my email
It should give me a section for my favorite links
I like to know whats happening today, three days out, etc.
Id like to have an online dictionary, thesaurus
It should be customized for the area where I live

It should have links to outside resources like libraries


If you had to choose three things for your portal, what would they be?
Academic resources:
Email
calendar
search engine
Schedule of classes
concerts
weather
How important is the portal to you?
It will be very important!
If you meet 80% of users needs and give them links to outside resources, youve served the people.
What if you had to pay for the portal?
I wouldnt pay for it (1)
$1 per semester
$10 per semester (6 out of 14 students)
the portal is a luxury not a necessity and I should have to pay for it.
It would save me time but I can do it on my own
It is worth the money. Palm Pilots cost $200 and calendars cost $13
The convenience is worth $10 per semester. Id become more efficient
It should be marketed as an online organizer that would work
Planners are expensive so the portal is worth the money
It should be marketed the same as health insurance
It will save you time, it is a convenience but it is a personal decision
Would you rather have it free with advertisements?
Yes! All students
What do you want to leave us with?
It should be user friendly or I wont use it.
It should be simple to set up
It should be simple to customize
It should have a help link
It should have email aliases on the web

How many email accounts do you have?


1 (1) 2 (7) uclink (6)
1(third party only)
I use other email accounts (not uclink)
I use third party accounts for personal email
UClink is more formal
We will always have multiple accounts
Id like to stay organized after I graduate
I think you could start charging for the portal after we graduate
How many would keep your uclink email address or continue using your portal?
Keep uclink (8) keep portal (9)
I would but Id need to get web email

Any other parting thoughts?


Shop/buy bookscompare prices (campus vs. vendors)
Pay bills online securely
Id like to see the library hours all year
Link the portal to my iDrive account
Play music through the portal
Id like access to Napster

It should have really good class integration


Id like to get my assignments online
It should give me my papers due dates
Id like to have a buddy list
Questions/Concerns
How safe is it?
Can advertisements get on the page?
Advertising sucks!
Pop-ups are bad!
No commercials!
No solicitation!
After I graduate, do I still get to keep my portal?
How soon will the portal be happening?

REGENTS AND CHANCELLORS SCHOLARS


What is your overall impression of the portals you visited?
I like the Yahoo look, but it should be more useful
The portal is a good organizer
I would check on information more frequently with a portal
There is the issue of control. I want to know what is going on and want to opt-out
The page should not reload except for sections of it
It should be very fast
What would you like to be able to do on your portal?
See campus events
subscribe to events
see arts events
Charge tickets to my CARS account
Have Tang Center billed to my CARS account
It should bill everything to CARS
add laundry credit to my account
add money to campus dining facilities
How important is the look and the feel of the portal?
It should have lots of visuals, colors, icons
It should be highly customizable
I should be able to change the entire look
I like myMichigan you can get your homework and check out professors webpages. It has links to our equivalent
of BearFACTS and web based email
It would be ok to list sales or Berkeley community stuff
What would you like to do on your portal?
Id like to get Black Lightning notes
Id like to check stock at the bookstore
Id like links to online stores
Id like to see the book lists for classes
It should have message boards
It should show me internships
Links to advising
Id like to access the music library from home on the web
It should give me access to the language library from home
Sports events should be available
Id like to access the schedule for specific events
Cal Performances should be on there
It should give me my midterms and finals schedules on pop-up screens

Id like to have PDF files of past exams. They should be listed by college and by course
Id like a way to meet people with similar interests.
Id like a reminder to take breaks from my computer
It should like to campus groups
Id like to know about the Frat parties
Id like to get the weather
Reserve plane tickets
Links to newspapers
It needs a good Search engine (Alta Vista, Ask.com, Google)
It should sync with my palm pilot
It should import/export my contact lists
I want access to the general catalogue
Access the schedule of classes
Do my degree check
Look up L&S breadth requirements
Look up my major requirements
UCI has a good search engine, use something like that
Pay for parking on the portal
Set up a resume database
Browse through seminars (searchable database)
Be able to print things out in PDF format
It needs an interactive campus map
Show the building where the class is and routes to get there
Put students in the drivers seat. Filter variables on schedule (pre-law, pre-med get info from Career Center)
Make mailing lists more obvious
One stop shop with opt-out option
Get career track information from Career Center
Get regular notifications
Join e-Groups
Have a basic news ticker
More connections to RSF, schedules, events
Do you use portals now?
Yahoo
No, theyre not useful
They collect information on you
Dont need it
How many email accounts do you have?
All students have more than one account
I should have access to web based email
Pop accounts are a nuisance.
I use uclink for important email and hotmail for personal email
Uclink is more formal
You should set up basic filtering for uclink accounts
Change the email address from uclink to name@Cal
Any last parting thoughts?
Opt out is important
No pre checked boxes
Dont increase student fees (max $50/semester)

On a scale of 1-10, how valuable would a portal be?


6 (if it optimizes schedules)
3 (if not optimized)
8-9 for freshmen
Godsend for freshmen, convenience for others
Luxury for upper classmen
Questions/concerns
Pop-up windows are annoying!
Banners are distracting!
How is this going to be funded?
If it is going to cost money, then ads are ok
If there is going to be a cost, then dont have the portal. Instead, give people shell accounts.
I dont trust the portal
FTP access would be good instead
No advertisements!
Advertising is bad, but campus events are ok so you dont miss stuff
How much is the portal a requirement and how much is it a convenience?

Appendix IX DRAFT UGA Focus Groups Summary, 2001


The UGA Divisional Computing Resources office conducted four focus groups between March 19 and
April 9, 2001. A total of 44 students who represented all levels and colleges and a wide variety of
majors participated in the focus groups.
The biggest messages were:

The opt out message came through loud and clear in all focus groups. Students do not want to be
forced to view information they are not interested in. No pre-checked boxes. They want to be able to
see and subscribe to campus information/bulletins.

One login and one password for everything (some students had as many as seven).

There should be a campus master calendar.

Require instructors to have course websites (syllabus, reading list, professor bios, exams, finals).

The portal should allow students to conduct all campus business on their portal page:
register for classes
see their personalized class schedule
buy books
chat with classmates
pay bills
view cars account
view loan information,
view financial aid
search for jobs
view professors biographies
get class assignments
get the class syllabus
sign up for services
sign up for organizations
request diploma on line
access to staff and department directory
access scholarships
search general catalogue
search schedule of classes
get email on the web*
schedule appointments
view on-line menu at the dining commons
get housing information and housing resources around Berkeley (link to e-Housing and Rental
Solutions).
*All students have more than one email address and want to be able to use their commercial email
address for normal communication. UCLink is for official business with the university.

Students want to click on something and ask questions.

The portal should have a good search engine.

The look and feel of the portal is important:


must be easy to set up
must be easy to use
should be streamlined
must have clean design (unclutered)
must be easy to navigate (should not have to use the back button)
should be flexible to allow color choices, placement of information on the page
should offer several templates to choose from and allow for custom design
(U Wash and UC Davis were used as example of desirables, UCLA was sited as cluttered).

Freedom to get outside information such as traffic, weather, sports, shopping, Bay Area events.
The portal was considered a god-send for freshmen but a luxury for continuing students. Because
it would increase their efficiency and save them time, advanced standing students would pay a fee to
use the portal so long as the fee is reasonable ($1-$50/semester).

Concerns:

There were mixed feelings about headlines, information being pushed at students.

Students want to the freedom to sign up for information rather than be forced to receive it.

Concerns about what the logon page will look like: advertisements? Unwanted information?

Security (identity, credit card processing, confidential information, academic records)

Cost.
Recommendations:

Look at Best Of Berkeley http://www.bestofberkeley.com/

Make it simple to set up and use or students wont use it.

Appendix X UCB Student Survey Data, LDP, 2002


1) Are you a/n: Undergraduate ( Lower-division; Upper-division) Graduate Student
Education Level
Undergraduate (Upper Division)
Undergraduate (Lower Division)
Undergraduate (Division Unstated)
Graduate
No Response
TOTAL

#
107
86
69
21
1
284

%
37.68%
30.28%
24.30%
7.39%
0.35%
100.00%

2) What college/school are you enrolled in?


Undergraduate Major
L&S
Unstated
College of Natural Resources
Social Welfare
Engineering
Chemistry
L & S/Haas
L & S/Social Welfare
Undeclared
Haas
Integrative Biology
L & S/Anthropology
L & S/College of Natural Resources
L & S/Molecular & Cell Biology
L & S/Psychology
Math
Molecular & Cell Biology
TOTAL

%
213 81.30%
14
5.34%
10
3.82%
5
1.91%
4
1.53%
2
0.76%
2
0.76%
2
0.76%
2
0.76%
1
0.38%
1
0.38%
1
0.38%
1
0.38%
1
0.38%
1
0.38%
1
0.38%
1
0.38%
262 100.00%

3) Have you ever used a web portal before?


Used Portal Before
Yes
No
Unsure
Unstated
TOTAL

%
158 55.63%
93 32.75%
30 10.56%
3
1.06%
284 100.00%

Graduate Major
#
Haas
Engineering
L&S
Humanities
Boalt
Chemistry
College of Natural Resources
German
Graduate Division
Optometry
Sciences
TOTAL

%
5 23.81%
4 19.05%
3 14.29%
2
9.52%
1
4.76%
1
4.76%
1
4.76%
1
4.76%
1
4.76%
1
4.76%
1
4.76%
21 100.00%

4) Which of the following campus offices do you interact with on a regular basis?
OFFICE
LIBRARY
Registrar
Student Associations/Clubs
Book Store
Recreation
Financial Aid
University Health Services
Campus Career Services
Departmental Advising
Central Advising
Transportation/Parking
Student Government
Housing/Dining
Other
Office of Student Life
Art Department
Disabled Students Program
Internship w/Astronomy Department
DSP
Student Learning Center
Student Learning Center
Cal Student Store
Education Abroad
Student Parent/Re-entry Center
Office of Student Life
Anthropology Department Links
Residential Services (i.e. rescomp, residence government)
Residential Hall Assembly
Greek Life
Registrar
Cal Alum

#
181
176
114
106
105
101
79
79
72
49
49
48
46
17

%
63.73%
61.97%
40.14%
37.32%
36.97%
35.56%
27.82%
27.82%
25.35%
17.25%
17.25%
16.90%
16.20%
5.99%

5) Which of the following links would you like to access through your portal?
LINKS
UC Events
BlackLightning
Bay Area Entertainment
Weather
Book Prices
DailyCal
Political News
Regional News
External Career Services
Sports
Financial News
Travel
Bay Area Rentals
Consumer News
Online Stores
Comics
Online Campus Chats
Groupware
Other Offices
www.bestofberkeley.com; class websites; greek websites
study tools (tutoring, group revisions, etc.)
sites for finding directions, eg mapquest.com
Schedule of classes; bearlink; email
newspaper sites
Music (CDNow, Audiogalaxy, MTV)
library research (e.g. CDL California Digital Library)
Horoscope
Grades/student info
Family Students
Extracurricular Berkeley/Bay Area activities and updates
Events calendar
email services, e.g. Hotmail
campus news
Berkeley Book Exchange
Bearmail
Bearfacts, scheduling & other intracampus links
ASUC

#
231
182
178
171
157
154
140
129
121
115
102
91
90
87
79
57
52
38
18

%
81.34%
64.08%
62.68%
60.21%
55.28%
54.23%
49.30%
45.42%
42.61%
40.49%
35.92%
32.04%
31.69%
30.63%
27.82%
20.07%
18.31%
13.38%
6.34%

6) Which of the following services would you most like the campus to provide through the web?
SERVICES STUDENTS WANT
Calendaring
Academic Transactions
Financial Transactions
Learning Management Systems
This Student Web Portal
Services-Other
Voting in student elections
Video recording of teacher's lectures!
study sessions (tutoring and reviews)
Student critiques of classes & professors.
Individual student websites
email (Bearmail)
Email
Classes for majors
class websites, central locus
campus activities
Access to info about the arts! There's not enough of that!

#
245
236
196
173
126
11

%
86.27%
83.10%
69.01%
60.92%
44.37%
3.87%

7) Web portals typically include a few required items or links that a user cannot remove from their portal
page. Which of the following do you think should be required?
REQUIRED LINKS DESIRED BY STUDENTS
Your College/Department News
Registrars Office News
General Campus News
Financial Aid Office News
Cashiers Office News
None of the Above
News-Other
Only very important announcements from above
I think this is a wonderful idea-it standardizes the portal
Emergency information
Career Center & University Health Service

#
180
144
119
88
49
27
4

%
63.38%
50.70%
41.90%
30.99%
17.25%
9.51%
1.41%

8) If the Berkeley student web portal offered a mix of the features listed in questions 4-7, would it make
your campus life easier?
WILL A PORTAL MAKE STUDENTS LIVES EASIER?
Yes
Unsure
No Response
No
TOTAL

%
196 69.01%
63 22.18%
14
4.93%
11
3.87%
284 100.00%

9) Assume the campus has a limited budget that allows the implementation of one system each year.
Please rank order the following systems in order of importance to you.
Results by Number of Responses
SYSTEM
Calendaring
Financial Transactions Online
Academic Transactions Online
This Student Web Portal
Learning Management System
Systems-Other

Results by Percentage of Responses


SYSTEM
Calendaring
Financial Transactions Online
Academic Transactions Online
This Student Web Portal
Learning Management System
Systems-Other

73
36
97
23
41
1

RANKING
3
4
58
69
40
57
72
57
84
44
33
25
32
63
40
45
62
1
0
0

1
25.70%
12.68%
34.15%
8.10%
14.44%
0.35%

RANKING
2
3
4
20.42% 24.30% 14.08%
20.07% 25.35% 20.07%
29.58% 15.49% 11.62%
8.80% 11.27% 22.18%
14.08% 15.85% 21.83%
0.35% 0.00% 0.00%

1
25
22
18
38
27
0

0
8.80%
7.75%
6.34%
13.38%
9.51%
0.00%

Average, Mean & Median of Responses


SYSTEM
Average
Calendaring
2.29
Financial Transactions Online
2.80
Academic Transactions Online
2.00
This Student Web Portal
3.30
Learning Management System
2.99
Systems-Other
1-better bearfacts and telebears, their usability is awful
2-Campus activities
5-no comment

Mean
3.28
3.79
2.99
4.28
3.98

Median
2.00
3.00
2.00
4.00
3.00

19
39
8
102
69
1

0
1
0
1
0
0

5
6.69%
13.73%
2.82%
35.92%
24.30%
0.35%

6
0.00%
0.35%
0.00%
0.35%
0.00%
0.00%

TOTAL
284
284
284
284
284

TOTAL
100.00%
100.00%
100.00%
100.00%
100.00%
1.06%

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS FROM STUDENTS

"this sounds great! I am excited to see the outcome."


Access to outside mail accounts as well (POP, etc).
already have calendaring in EECS. please do not use Corporate Time (CalAgenda). already have
learning mgt system at EECs. answer to Q.8 depends on usability, most current portals are not
simple or convenient
Book price comparison engine = special interest, may only be useful at beginning of semester.
career fairs, special events
doesn't www.berkeley.edu already do this?
Don't call it a web portal. Call it an online information resource homepage.
Don't think it is very necessary.
Everything looks great!
excellent idea!
Excellent idea! Anything that helps me organize my life better is great.
great idea
I don't know what a web portal is.
I don't see the use of this.
I have always liked UCLA's portal & wondered why we didn't have one. This is a great idea.
I look forward to it.
I remember participating in a focus group on this.
I think this is a good idea and one that should be pursued to be ready by the 02-03 academic year.
The ability to check all pertinent school-related information would be indispensible!
Learning Management System sounds very helpful!
Links to mail.yahoo.com and hotmail
Make the portal really easy to customize or no one will use it.
More access to learning material - web pages of courses, links to previous exams, etc.
Need to be very assuring that security and private information is a top priority.
Nope
respondent emphasized Calendaring and Learning Mgt Systems in response to Q.6 (double-circled
those items)
respondent noted "most important" next to "Academic Transactions Online" in question 9.
RHA news.
Seems like a good idea!
Student parent info (eg. Childcare, grants/loans available, healthcare info---clinics, etc.)
This is a good idea that would make campus life more informed.
This is an awesome idea!!
This sounds awesome -- I hope it works.
What difference w/Telebears, Bearfacts, etc. It's already too complicated, are we adding another one
over it?
What exactly is a portal and why do we need one? Why does the school need to spend money on a
portal when there are so many other things that could be more useful.
What is a web portal? You should define it before you give the survey.

Appendix XI Summary of Student Perspective, 2002


Investigate and report on the reasons for doing a portal. What would be the Universitys goal(s) in
providing a portal? How will the campus know if the portal realizes these goals?
From the student perspective, the Universitys goal in building a portal should be to make their
lives easier by providing a single point of entry to the various enterprise applications the campus
either already has or is considering building as part of the e-Berkeley initiative.

Interview UCB students, student service providers, faculty and administrators, and report on the benefits
they would seek from a student portal, as well as concerns they may have about authorizing
development of one. Question users and providers as to where they would rank development of a portal
compared to other web-based student-oriented services.
Our survey results lead to the following rank ordering:
1. Academic transactions
64% of respondents ranked this #1 or #2
2. Calendaring
46% of respondents ranked this #1 or # 2
3. Financial transactions
33% of respondents ranked this #1 or # 2
4. Learning mgt. system
28% of respondents ranked this #1 or # 2
5. Portal
17% of respondents ranked this #1 or # 2
Benefits of a portal: Ease of access to various enterprise applications. Approximately 70% of
respondents said their lives would be made easier by Berkeley web portal which offers a single user
ID and password to various campus enterprise applications and access to internal and external
links and services.
Concerns expressed by our respondents (not ranked):
A portal must be easily customizable.
Security/privacy must be assured.
Would this actually make the campus web space more complex, by putting another system
(portal) on top of existing ones.
Concerns expressed in earlier focus group:

Focus group students did not want required or locked-down channels.

However there were mixed responses to question about headline type information being
pushed to students through portal.

Portal must have single logon and password.

Calendaring is a high priority.

Portal should allow students to conduct all their campus business from single site.

Portal should provide access to outside information in addition to ability to conduct campus
business.

Students wanted to be able to use their private email addresses for unofficial communication.

Look and feel are important: must be easy to use, easy to customize, clean design, no back
button.

No advertisements.

Suggest campus groups that should be involved in developing and designing a UCB portal. Identify
these groups by answering: a) who do the students interact with the most? b) what student groups exist
that speak for the student body?
a: Per our survey, students interact the most with the Library (64%) and the registrars office
(62%).

b: The Graduate Assembly represents graduate students, and the ASUC represents
undergraduates. However neither seems to have an officer position with technology issues as part
of its portfolio. We recommend that portal developers rely on our research, and the UGA
Divisional Computing Resources office focus groups data, during the design stage. But we
recommend that actual students be brought in as beta testers after initial design is completed, to
insure that the design is easy to use and easy to customize.

Top 21 links
We see two different types of links off of a student portal: transactional and informational.
Transactional links are to campus enterprise applications through which students can conduct
campus business via the web, with single long on and full authentication. Informational links are to
campus and external websites which are of interest to students, but do not provide them with the
ability to conduct campus business via the web. Based on our survey data, and our understanding
of whether or not various campus offices allow students to conduct business transactions via the
web, we have come up with a list of seven transactional links and fourteen information links, below.
(need to trim one?)
As campus enterprise applications come on line which allow offices to begin delivering services
through the web in the transactional sense, they could move from the Informational list to the
Transactional list.
TRANSACTIONAL LINKS
1. Library
2. Black Lightning
3. Registrar
4. Bookstore
5. Financial Aid
6. Campus Career Services
7. Web Email
INFORMATIONAL LINKS
1. UC Events
2. Bay Area Entertainment
3. Weather
4. Book Price Comparison Engine
5. Daily Cal
6. Political News
7. Regional News
8. External Career Services
9. Student Associations and Clubs
10. Recreation
11. University Health Services
12. Departmental Advising/News
13. Central Advising/News
14. Transportation/Parking

% of Respondents
64%
64%
62%
37%
36%
28%

% of Respondents
81%
63%
60%
55%
54%
49%
45%
43%
40%
37%
28%
25%
17%
17%

Students added three campus offices that they interact with on a regular basis: the
Disabled Students Program, Student Learning Center, and Office of Student Life. These
are good suggestions to add to the list of our top 21.
Recommend names for the student portal (including non-Bear names): see Appendix

Appendix XII Staff, Faculty, Administrators


One-on-One Interviews, Content
We conducted forty-three one-on-one interviews with faculty, staff, and administrators at UCB. Below is
the raw data from those conversations quotations or closely approximations thereof. We found it
interesting that potentialities people spoke of were not necessarily in their primary domain staff talked
about academic potentialities, while faculty spoke of administrative efficiencies.
WHAT DO YOU MEAN BY PORTAL?

There should be a campus portal, with a student view


The most useful model for a portal is one that can draw on a number of automated campus systems,
and use data from these systems to automatically update an individuals pages and/or pipe
information to a target population
A student portal should cover the basic topic areas: Heres your learning life (whats due this week?
Practice tests? Upcoming quizzes? Reminders from your department? Faculty office hours? Courserelated chat rooms? Buy textbooks online e.g., TextBooks in a Box); Heres your administrative life
(make CARS more understandable; allow student groups an easy way to schedule a meeting room);
Heres your social/community life on campus (updates from the Chancellor; campus news; news
from your student group, specialty chat rooms); Heres your entry to the world (shop online; news,
favorite links, etc)

WHAT PROBLEMS WOULD A STUDENT PORTAL HELP TO ADDRESS?

The campus web is very difficult to use now because the information is not tailored to the person
seeking the information you have to wade through a lot to get the bit that you want.
We have a hard time effectively telling students about known problems with specific CARS bills
because there is not one place to quickly get information to the students who are affected.

WHAT GOALS MIGHT THE PORTAL FACILITATE?

Building a relationship between the institution and students. Price Waterhouse Cooper presented
a demo of a portal that began as soon as a student applied it reminded them of upcoming deadlines
and fed them information about what their life would be like (heres your advisor, housing, etc.)
Once a student enrolled and arrived, they had different choices to select from, and different choices
yet again when they became an alum
Build community. A portal might help mitigate sense of isolation for those who feel this way:
whats going on on campus? Daily Cal / Berkeleyan / Zellerbach; office hours of faculty; spread the
word that doing community service is a stress reliever rather than an addition to stressreach out to
ethnic minorities; low-income students; gay/lesbian students. The biggest benefit an (informed)
portal could provide would be the means for people to find each otherto identify who has like
interests. A portal would provide a consistent and in-common starting point for all students home
and therefore would provide a point of commonality (which is the ground of community). Insofar
as we can provide good profiles of students, we can send them information which is actually relevant
to them speak to them intelligently might help make them feel seen
Improve communication. Campus entities must target their audiences as specifically as possible in
order to conduct essential communications while minimizing the amount of unwanted or
unauthorized email traffic

Display campus wares to best effect. One staff member commented, From various surveys and
less formal input, we realize that despite our best efforts, lots of students never know the wealth of
resources and services that we have to offer. The biggest thing we could do for the campus is to
figure out how to let people know all the fabulous stuff we already offer! echoing a similar faculty
experience, UCB is the greatest cafeteria of information to be found anywherebut we dont have
a very good menu -- nobody knows how to select the best combination of food.
Improve Undergraduate experience. We really underserve our undergraduates. Anything we can
do to make better contact with them, the better. Might help reduce freshman anxiety this is a huge
impersonal place; undergrads are squashed into boxes; forced to work hard at things that should be
easy (communicating with their classmates; communicating with faculty; getting feedback and
updates.) A portal could help with this. Might help students feel less overwhelmed when they need to
get information.

POTENTIAL BENEFIT TO STUDENTS

should make it easy for the student to have the information they need to be successful at Berkeley on
a daily basis.
help students find information that is otherwise very hard to find; eases navigating the web
students can more easily navigate their campus life. They should not have to call around or stand in
long lines.
students and alumni can connect with their areas of interest.
portability student can get same info/bookmarks/etc without carrying around laptop or list of
favorite links.
one-stop shopping. Productivity increase by having all the information you need in one place.
Feeling of being treated as an individual
Better information faster
The main advantage to grads is it can get them info about things they are interested about that are
happening outside their home department
Single password makes life more easier and makes your password more secure
More kinds of information available remotely. Security it knows who you are so we can give you
more secure info.

ACADEMIC/INSTRUCTIONAL POTENTIAL

could be really great if we could use it to provide tutorials and other forms of online guidance to help
connect students to the library and research tools they need to be successful.
would be great if could use this as a better connection to research. Use it as an opportunity to
connect students to libraries, conventional materials, concept of the integrity of intellectual property.
I used to have to use one class period as a slide review sessionnow since all the images are up on
the web, with captions and all pertinent information, students can use this as much (or little) as they
needand I can use the review class session for more teaching.
The more specific profiles we have of students, the more help we can helpfor example, if we knew
they were enrolled in a particular course, we could feed them resources on that topic (note, this is
more of a course web thing, but interesting, yes?) Some of the services we could channel:
inventory of library materials the person has already checked out; ability to renew online; ability to
ask a reference question online; ability to page material from NRLF via the web; e-reserves (for
undergrads); list of electronic e-journal, etc.

ADMINISTRATIVE POTENTIAL

Facilitates communication and outreach


Will tend to fold independent campus entities back into a common whole, as channel providers
restructure their data to meet channel standards
Could increase overall productivity on campuscode developed for one applicati
Helps two-way communication since we can use the portal to remind them of deadlines/processes
you know who got what information
could help with collections/defaults/registration through increased communication
our switch to Summer Telebears eliminated 90% of Summer paper processing overnight. "It was
amazing." We could hope for similar success in all applications that became web-based via the
portal.
Students are more likely to keep their own info up to date (expected graduation/summer elig/INS
status/needs)
Advisors can spend less time providing basic information to lots of students, and more time with the
students who really need help
could facilitate and improve efficiency of communications with large number of students
Portal can be useful for push info, especially if it is well targeted
reduce the amount of paper we use needlessly
Easier for administrators to develop targeted services (within departments or central).
the flexible architecture of portals lets you plug in new stuff without starting from scratch
Standardization of information
Student Portal would establish a connection and provide broader access to students. With a portal,
units would be able to get the information directly to the students it serves.
if professors had better information about campus student body, they could do better outreach, better
advising, better triage.

INSTITUTIONAL POTENTIAL

A portal with a common look and feel would provide a sense of continuity and wholeness to the
campus if all students use the same portal it lends a unified feeling to daily experience
Should eventually hook into alumni portal as well for development/fundraising
Ability to articulate the presence and philosophy of the college
Vehicle to enhance new and innovative student service programs.

WHAT ARE THE ESSENTIAL FEATURES OF A STUDENT PORTAL?

Single sign-on!!!! If the portal does not include profile information and is not integrated, students
will not gain enough from it to use it and it will not be effective.
Roles database that supports both authentication and authorization
Customizable. Should allow maximum flexibility to student in designing their site as they choose.
We should invite students to participate in community (by offering them interesting and varied
channels)but the student has to also accept the invitation (by subscribing)whatever they decide
should be what rules, so pretty much everything should be not locked downteachers can still
require that students take quizzes online, and service providers could still require that some stuff be
done online without forcing the student to have this channel forever on their desktop.
Right now you need to know exactly what department you are looking for to find the information. It
should be more customer-oriented and less office-oriented.
Seamless feel

Students need to use many of the current systems simultaneously.


Look and feel shouldnt be too corporate
Allow students to self-identify areas of interest for this reason. We don't want a little mistake (i.e.,
we somehow mis-identify their interests) to cause bad feelings about a portal and keep them from
using it.
Security -- ensure we reach the right students and ensure FERPA protection is followed
should conform to highest levels of emerging standards
cant take too long to use over a phone line.
cant be too complicated
has to be fast, even over a phone line
cant require too many button-pushes
Has to scale
Has to integrate
Should have a common look and feel
has to be easy for faculty to add course-related content (wed probably need to add FTE to
Educational Technology to help faculty with this)
has to be easy for staff to add service-related content (who/where would staff get trained? not
obvious)
It would be great if the system enabled and controlled on beginning and end dates for information, to
allow timely automatic display and automatic removal of information.
comprehensive
user-friendly
Start restrictive with the customizable layout, then open up other options more gradually
Create a steady format
In working with limited resources on the campus, focus on providing services to UC system
students, without too much over-management of the policies
There must be coordination across units
Be very efficient in the use of targeted information and be careful not to overuse
when a student identifies one class as being of interest, have the system be able to list all the classes
that have related subject matter (per coding in class catalog)and list all x number of classes that
others have also taken who have taken this course (akin to Amazons feature of other books read
by people who bought this book.)
support newsgroups / threaded discussion groups / chat rooms, with an archiving function
a portal would be great if it could actually assist students academically tutorial or guides to link
students to library resources that are in the field of interest?

OTHER ELEMENTS OF SUCCESS

information that is being ported into the portal has to be timely, accurate and interesting. There has to
be a there there.
start small for success. Just make sure enough existing things are there so that students come. Then
add the main things they want that we don't have. Then work towards full integration. Work in
phases so that the project can succeed as it goes along and will not stall out. Its important to really
make sure that we know what students want before we build anything new.
coordinate all the portals being developed on campus or we will have too many and it will be too late
to standardize; we must standardize from the beginning.
we should be looking at other portal models and learning from their success rather than making all
their mistakes over again

students will not like spam. The amount and type of information flow will have to be tightly
controlled
faculty would participate more if there was some reward for all the time it takes.
Can students access it from the time of admissions? Need to put it out there early if we want them to
use it?

HOW DOES A PORTAL RANK AMONG OTHER POSSIBLE INVESTMENTS?

There are so many good things to be gained! We shouldnt wait. We should get started.
Im a scientist. I think we shouldnt try to overanalyze before we even try it. We should put
something up, and see how it goes. If students get too much mail, for example, thats the time to
consider how to control email, not before.
maybe we should be developing the underlying functionality, rather than worrying about how to
package it? lets put our resources into developing, for example, a calendar that is fully interoperable
with key data sources students can always bookmark the online functions they need.
one faculty member reports that the campus needs to upgrade classrooms there are only 3
classrooms that he can use on campus where he can show slides, next to a posted list of vocabulary
words, and have enough light in the room for students to take notes
more than a need for more electronic stuff, he hears from students that they need the library to be
open more hours, and that they need the books on the shelves when they need them (not checked
out; not at NRLF.)
Maybe we should first integrate existing systems and eliminate paper processes across campus. Why
can't other systems talk more easily with CARS for instance.
It seems that upgrading or getting a new Registration system should be a much higher priority.
Upgrading access to the library resources is the most important thing we can do.
More integrated student systems are very important. Portal will point out the current weaknesses
and places where we have inconsistent data.

CONCERNS ABOUT A STUDENT PORTAL

there is considerable unevenness now in knowledge and staffing to maintain flat web pagesthis
will be a continuing issue as the technology exists to create channels. Where will channel providers
get staffing/training to do this? For example, some departments already have a full-time webmaster,
and already support web pages for each class offered by the department. This is in sharp contrast to
other departments who pay large amounts of money to off-campus designers for websites of uneven
quality and questionable architecture.
Electronic contact (of any sort) is no substitute for good advising. Personal contact should not be
deflected by developing technology. We do our students a great disservice by not linking them up
with guidance until they are already in trouble.
This will create an environment where there is increased expectation on the part of students for more
and more of their education to be delivered by technology never go to class?
some of the ideas about how information will get into CourseWeb are likely to NOT work, since
there is no staff in the department who does this sort of stuff (e.g., no webmaster, no scheduler.)
a student portal would be great if it were done rightbut right means expensive. Do we have this
kind of funding available?
How are existing static web pages going to be integrated into the portal?
The campus is creating many portals with different technologies will L&S be required to provide
content to each in different formats? They are not staffed to do this?

Will any support be given to smaller departments who may not have the resources to keep up their
web information? Like the CourseWeb skeleton idea?
Biggest concern is that the portal will be developed, but the systems behind it wont improve or will
be left to fall apart so that portal will be a better gateway to worse information.
Fine line between nagging and giving students the information they need. Don't overwhelm them
with notices.
While students would benefit greatly from having a very intelligent database, they might fear and
resent it as an invasion of privacy.
Campus network infrastructure must be upgraded, especially bandwidth must be ramped up with
several times the resources of the actual portal before it is brought up. The campus cannot afford
"outages" or failures of the portal it would take years for students to come back
If the portal is too "corporate" in its look and feel, students will be very wary of using it
The Campus must take care it does not appear to be providing or endorsing inappropriate content
(e.g. discussions about potential NCAA draft choices; endorsing Black Lightning as an alternative to
class attendance, etc)

WHAT APPLICATIONS/LINKS TO INCLUDE?

Telebears / BearFacts
Financial Aid
Register / registrar
process to file for degree
eParking
Library
CARS
course-related information: catalog description; class room assignment and schedule; faculty office
hours; practice exams; discussion boards, get Black Lightning notes, lecture notes, syllabi, exam
schedule and room, email communication with faculty, book lists. (Note: course channel should have
capacity to upload scanned documents; small handouts; slides; pictures; text ability to hand out
assignments and for the faculty to be able to track assignments. Note: would be great if each course
link also provided course specific lists or links to pertinent library resources)
notice feature: personalized info that would save student lots of trouble (notices of past due bills,
blocks, about to be dropped from the roles, meal blocks, dont forget this test)
DARS, and more: match your degree requirements and warn you that a course you need is about to
be offered for the last time before your anticipated graduation date for example.
web mail
links to a students major department
email links to undergraduate or graduate advisors; tas and faculty
campus alerts
get campus news and list of campus events
student accounting system financial aid
a calendar that campus systems, campus staff, and students can each populate
schedule appointment with advisor
schedule appointment with health services
get news and weather
pay fees
buy sports tickets
buy Cal Performance tickets
buy books online

Ability for students to see the status of their requests to their college (ie major declaration,
graduation petition, etc)
way to put online forms for student requests to their college, that could be routed electronically
(would mean need e-signature ability for staff)
grades
self-care and preventative health information (nutrition, fitness, online medical information; how to
handle social issues); prescription refills online; health appointments on line; advice nurse online
orientation for new students
opportunities for volunteer programs
departmental / college deadlines
Statement of Legal Residence,
On-Line Offer Letter

WHO SHOULD BE INVOLVED IN DESIGN?

involve students from the outset of the design process (Note: ME Graduate Student council have
been a primary force in developing technology at ME)
web designer
communications experts / writers
We should just buy something off the shelf .
Design is an iterative process: talk to stakeholders, put something up, get feedback, revise (over and
over and over)

WHAT MANAGEMENT MODELS DID WE DISCOVER?

Who owns the project?

Who does the work and who decides has everything to do with who owns the data

nobody on campus is responsible for campus-wide stuffthe closest we get is Public Affairs, who
do a pretty good job with the Berkeley campus website. If the portal is a campus portal, probably
should be the owner if its a student portal (only) it probably falls under Undergrad Affairs.

there is an ongoing discussion about who owns data, and who is custodian for data IST is
custodiantheir responsibility is to ensure the security of administrative information which is
processed, stored, maintained, or transmitted on computing systems and networks centrally managed
by ISTand to protect the confidentiality of that data to protect data from unauthorized change,
destruction or disclosure while the data owner is the entity or office that is authorized to collect
and mange the data as official record, and as such is responsible for figuring out what content needs
to be included, how it should be organized, who is authorized to access it, etc.
Who decides on content?

the data owner (see above)within the parameters set for the campus by the Interim e-Berkeley
Policy for Berkeley Campus Online Activities, version 1.1

should allow channel providers lots of flexibility while also conforming to overall standards

provider has to decide what to provide and it will depend on the complexity of the operation some
providers will just want to put up a channel to a flat web page; others will want to reformat to
provide maximum utility as a channel.

seems like the e-Berkeley Steering Committee might make decisions of what channels get locked
down

The Registrar's Office is probably the best place since they understand most of the key deadlines and
information that students need and they have a good knowledge of FERPA and privacy issues

Not the technical side of the house. The demand should drive the technology, not vice-versa
Each provider with a faculty/staff committee like telebears in charge overall
A non-tech group of editors, writers, etc with broad experience who know which things they can
handle and which things need to go to a high-level group
IST should issue guidelines for departments to manage their content.

Who should manage/be responsible for the technology?

since this is a campus-wide initiative (whether its thought of as a student portal or as a student view
on a campus portal) it belongs to IS&Tthe decision of who within IS&T would do it belongs to
J.McCredie

Ideally Undergraduate Affairs could build an alliance with Grad Div.

SIS
Who should be involved in the high-level image?

Office of Marketing and Management of Trademarks

Office of Public Affairs

Undergraduate Affairs

Computer Network Services

e-Berkeley

Undergraduate Affairs

Students

Development

Resource Development
Who should be involved in policy making and determining the administrative processes and policies?

Students will not like spam. The amount and type of information flow will have to be tightly
controlled. Someone in Genaro Padilla or Christina Maslach's office should probably be in charge of
thissomeone with good understanding of campus operations and the needs of students in mind.
Also someone with the ability to say "no" and make it stick.

representatives from those organizations on campus that provide services to a large number of
students and all those who have information that will be useful to decision-making including

students themselves (if they care about travel, give them traveland if their only need for weather
reports is fulfilled by looking out the window, dont bother with this). Rep from ASUC. Rep from
Grad Division

registrar

Admissions and Enrollment

BAS

Bud Travers (various entrepreneurial projects)

Housing and dining

Recreational sports

Undergraduate Affairs

Grad Division

Library

Educational Technology / Learning Management Systems

would the schools and colleges be helpful (or just weigh down the decision-making?)

Representative from whomever in IS&T will be doing the technical support

People who should be involved in decision-making, planning, prioritizing: Conhaim, JR for


McCredie, Barbara Davis, Tim Heidinger, Human Resources (to ensure a fit with HRMS), Public
Affairs, BAS

e-Berkeley
e-Berkeley might delegate day-to-day content on locked down channels (e.g., to Public Relations)
Would also need some way of approving content on any particular channel probably delegated out
to departments, in some fashion akin to the vetting process used now for sending Deans/Directors
or using the everybody email reflector
Designee from EVCP Gray
Designee from Maslach (expect she would delegate this), Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education
A working group of students/staff from JRs office and other staff Phil Stark, someone from Haas
/faculty which should report to a group of higher-ups who can balance the resources for the portal
with other tech priorities

CRITERIA FOR MEASURING/EVALUATING PORTAL USE/SUCCESS

evidence that the students use it


shorter lines at student services
more students graduating more on time
more students registered faster
more financial aid paid faster
improved on-line advising to students
easier access to DARS
decreased in-person activity
must enhance student communication
must make staff work easier

OTHER COMMENTS

About faculty

the biggest problem that faculty report as people is feeling lonely. Many faculty even working
next door to each other dont know what one another are doing or are interested inneither the
Academic Senate nor departmental meetings serve to build a way to network; or to meet likeminded people. Perhaps there is some way for technology to help people identify each other
(potential colleagues) For example, by listing abstracts of faculty (and graduate?) papers by
subject area with a way to get back to these peoplethis wouldnt exactly build a community,
but it would allow individuals an idea of who to invite to a function
About students

five out of nine faculty interviewed report that students are not nearly as information savvy as
some give them credit for. Some students hate technology (even in what we think of as a high
tech field). Many cannot find useful materials on the internet. Students waste a lot of time on the
internet, for lack of knowing how to do it.
How would faculty like to use technology to improve teaching?

would love to be able to include video and digital reproductions of rare archival materials.

figure out how to teach with the fabulous materials in the Bancroft without damaging the
materials seems like for the first time ever, digitalization might make this possible.

woud like the campus to figure out the bandwidth problem and put in computers with cdrom
writersso that students could, in effect, download the library resources they need onto their
own cd-library

has goal to get all the lecture-type information to the students via the web then converting class
time to forums for discussion.
for students who are in trouble, would like to be able to use registration database to find what
other courses one of her students are taking in order to be able to consult with that teacher
have students be able to do web logging on line to keep a diary of how they feel; what they
are doing; throughout long projects, that the student and professor would both have access to
and which the student could make available to other team/classmates at will. something like
this is now available through the Interactive University, but the technology is still sort of
obstructive.
wants to be able to archive assignments; and have students submit assignments; and have a way
of tracking these over time (archive)

What support do faculty need to include more technology?

incorporate video clips hes got lots of video material that really brings the subject to life, which he
now puts on reserve in the Library but if it was possible to deliver some of this over the web (and
in the classroom) that would be great.

regular access to digital camera;

hands-on tutorials with PhotoShop;

enough one-on-one or one-to-similar-group consulting on how to go from manuscript to


presentation.

make it easy

provide some classes to any on campus who want to incorporate digital images and video (she
knows of others in her same boat.)

funding and staff support

faculty reward converting any significant portion of class into digital requires an obscene
amount of time.
Faculty feedback on current technology available to aid instruction

uses Blackboard right now, but finds that the students are pretty daunted by all the security they have
to get through in order to get the information they want.

uses email lists from the registrar office

doesnt use online discussions (classes are small and they have discussion sessions with TAs)

uses ERes to set up pages for his classes and is pleased. It is password protectable. Uses it to send
announcements, post assignments, and weekly to post answers to homework problem sets. He uses
Netscape composer to create the html. Can add any document to the site by faxing it.

WebCT , but its not very friendlywants it easier to customizedoesnt want to have to know
HTMLwants it more graphically organized (a Mac user and has that kind of mind.) Very much
looking forward to CourseWeb and the more sophisticated learning management systems to come

Appendix XIII Responses, UCB Staff, Faculty, and Administrator Survey


We received 38 responses. Range of Departments surveyed: Student Life, Registrar, School/University Partnerships,
Career Center, IS&T, Residential Life, Parking & Transportation, Payroll, Economics, Environ Design, CALSO, DSP,
Student Learning Center, Financial Aid Office, Academic Senate, and more
1) You primarily serve:
Undergraduates Graduate students All Students
Not enough respondents checked a box to make this useful.
2) Do you currently provide information to your students?(check all that apply)
Most departments use email (84%) and have a website (87%). About a third also offer interactive web
services (39%). The interactive services seem mainly to be concentrated in administrative departments.
3) Does your department have an individual designated to gather and post content on the web?
94% of departments surveyed have a designated individual to handle web content (44% have more than one
individual) A small number use a student to update their web content.
4) How often do you update the information provided on your web page if you have one?
Website Updates:
Daily
14%
2-3 times/week
6%
Weekly
22%
Semi-monthly
17%
Monthly or less often
36%
N/A
6%

15%
6%
24%
18%
38%

5) How often do you update the content on your interactive system(s) if you have one?
Interactive System Updates:
Live
8%
Daily
19%
2-3 times/week
3%
Weekly
3%
Semi-monthly
0%
Monthly or less often
17%
N/A
50%

17%
39%
6%
6%
0%
33%

6) If you had a channela way to provide direct links to your information or web-based systems on the student portal,
would you update your on-line content more often?
71% of respondents would update their information more often if they had a channel on the portal.

7) How important is each of the following features of a portal? (please circle):


Feature
Single Logon for Campus systems
One Stop Shopping
Ability to Publish Information to all Students
Web access to email
Consistent Web Design for UC Berkeley
Easy Opt In and Opt Out of Features
Integration of Berkeley and Outside Information
Ability to Customize Appearance

Rank
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8

Average
4.59
4.43
4.38
4.27
4.11
3.92
2.78
2.84

8) How important is each of the following applications or content to provide on a student web portal?(please circle)
Respondents ranked the on-line administrative functions (enroll in classes, see billing statement, Financial Aid
information) the most important, followed very closely by academic functions (see course and exam schedules, on-line
catalogue, faculty email etc), an on-line calendar, and the ability to pay fees on line. Also ranked very high were the
Career Center, the ability to make Tang Center appointments, and Campus News and Events. Ranked least
important were outside links to news and weather services, on-line chats, and the ability to purchase sports tickets or
Black Lightning notes on-line. The Specific Rankings follow:
Name
Telebears
BearFacts
FinAid
PayRegFee
CourseTime
Catalogue
FacEmail
Calendar
Syllabi
PayFees
CareerCenter
OfficeHours
DARS
HealthAppt
QuizTime
CampNews
BookList
Library
Epark
AdvAppt
BooksOnLine
Housing
PracExam
DiscusBoard
FavExt
CalPerfTix
ExtCareer
SportsTix
BlackLight
Chat
NewsWeath

Average

Rank
4.81
4.72
4.69
4.66
4.44
4.39
4.26
4.21
4.19
4.17
4.17
4.11
4.09
4.08
4.06
3.97
3.94
3.75
3.71
3.66
3.54
3.38
3.31
3.08
3.04
3.00
2.97
2.91
2.86
2.79
2.47

1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
28
29
30
31

9) Given that UC Berkeley has a limited budget, in what order would you develop the following systems in order to give
the maximum benefit to students?:
System
Academic Transactions (major, transcripts, DARS,
electronic advising)
Financial Transactions (pay reg fees, parking fees,
bookstore transactions)
Portal
Learning Management System
Interactive Calendar

Order
1

Average
2.23

2.53

3
3
5

3.23
3.23
3.48

10) What are the main benefits of implementing a student web portal at Berkeley(please check all that apply)
Benefit

Order

Percent checked

Less time in lines

82%

Communication with targeted groups

68

Know where to go for services

83

Feel like individual due to targeted information

61

Advisors can spend more time in-person

55

Less time answering stock questions

47

Consistent image and community

45

More hits on department website

26

11) Any major problems you foresee with implementing a portal?

Structural capabilities/cost

Security, standards

Governance

Tech is quickly obsolete and UC is slow

Too much traffic on network

Student learning curve

Trying to hard to be UCLA

Portal should not replace in-person contact

Costs

Authentication

Must not replace in-person advising

Coordination across units


12) If you could name the UC Berkeley student web portal, what name would you choose? (see Appendix XXIII)
13) Do you want to add anything not covered in this questionnaire? none

Appendix XIV Responses, UCB Staff Focus Groups


The responses shown below were gathered at the 11th UCB Advising Conference; most of our twelve participants
were Student Affairs Officers.
What information do students need to be successful?
General comments:

Most info students needs is already online; the trick is to get students to it.

Information should be compatible with Palm Pilots and other hand-held devices
Specifics (no ranked order):

Academic calendars

Key administrative dates

Course stuff: materials, announcements, mid-terms

DARS

Calendar: to integrate class schedules, personal schedule, club activities

Sidebar showing campus events / news, etc.

Bookmarked web-sites

Targeted groups/push information

Banners?

Be able to do appeals (e.g., to grades; late withdrawal; etc.) via the portal

Peer advisors available on-line

Career center

CARS information

Financial aid stuff

Parking applications and payment

Housing related information they can already apply online, but it would be really great if they could
check on the status of their application online this would really benefit freshmen and transfer student
(who are most of the residential students now) however, as we build more housing, this might also
benefit other segments of the population

Vote online for ASUC

Vote online for fee referendums


Questions / Concerns (no ranked order):

Who has access to posting?

Avoid information overload

Maintenance of updated information

If students are allowed to opt out of some notifications, is there an option for service providers to re-push?
What information do you have to communicate to your students?
General comments:
It would be great if the system enabled and controlled beginning and end dates for information to allow timely
automatic display and automatic removal of information.
Specifics (no ranked order):

Orientation

Deadlines

Graduation checklist (e.g., financial aid payback information, transcripts, letters of reference, etc.)

Rules and regulations

Health service information: health insurance waiver deadlines (now notice goes by mail); link to various UHS
sites

Academic information

Clubs

Student life items


Campus events and news (there are pros and cons to this)

Grad fellowship information: applications, links to online fellowship databases

Student learning center: tutoring, study groups for particular classes, etc.

Health service:

News page?

Dining service information

Cal rentals off campus

Residence hall information

Questions / Concerns (no ranked order):

Provision of translation links

Allow students to self-identify interest in a topic; then we could send them updates that are pertinent to
them (irrespective of their major, etc., but based on their expressed interest)

Are there privacy issues involved? If we had student profiles, who gets to see this information? Who gets
to use it? FERPA and campus use policy address some of this in concept already.

How much email can we send before students get burned out?

Who would provide info and how? Would there be a recharge for space?
What are the most common questions you get from students?
General comments:
Different questions depending on where you are in your life as a student: prospective students; incoming students;
upper division; grad. Incoming students ask about housing, International House, Loans & Receivables, Financial
Aid, Admissions, Residency, State Residency (how to establish proof of). Wants to know where these offices are,
when they are open, what their phone numbers are.
Specifics (no ranked order):

Financial aid (Wheres my money, how do I get my money?)

Housing (Where am I going to live? How do I find it?)

Academic Advising

Tutoring

Enrollment information: get on wait lists, getting into sections (i.e., stuff on Telebears)

Grades

Health/legal issues

Links to community resources

Student groups/events, information

Disabled/exceptional circumstances (students with specific needs)

Computer problems connecting to campus; I forgot my password

Student I.D. (how do I get it? or I lost it!)

Student Learning Center

New student orientation (CALSO)


What information is hardest for students to find?
General comments:
Selection of information should be role-dependent (e.g., for prospective students, housing information should be
on top)
Specifics (no ranked order):

Housing

Community services

Emergency loan money available

Crisis links

How much do I owe? (CARS and other systems reporting the same information often show different
answers due to differences in schedules for data update)
Blocks on registration: who set them and why?
Registration information
When is my appointment (with my advisor? with health services?)

Questions / concerns:

Could appointment information be a breech of confidentiality? Perhaps ok, if ONLY the individual can
see the appointment time.
If we build a portal, what would attract students?
General comments:
We wouldnt have to attract them -- students expect this.
Specifics (no ranked order):

Easy

Fun

Fast

Forced to use system because only way to do some things

Ease of access to all systems

The more information they can find there, the more they will use it; make sure that all pertinent channels
are there

Able to access information of interest for you (personal)

Access to Email (note: Email access has to be fast and cant be too restrictive on number of messages that
can be kept in memory)

Library link: renew, catalogs, is it on the shelf?

Visually stimulating (no banner or advertisements)

Standards throughout levels of web information (for all channel providers) vis-a-vis look, feel and
navigability of their sites....and most importantly updating their sites on a consistent basis to avoid stale
information.

Add promotions sponsored by campus departments? (no off-campus vendor advertisements!)

Notices about cool campus events cal performances; speakers, etc


We are interested in improving the sense of community for undergraduate studentshow could the student
portal contribute to this effort?

Threaded discussion groups about shared interests and subjects; chat rooms; list of already existing user
groups (and way to subscribe)

Connecting different populations by ethnicity, family status, university status, location

Linking outlying communities (like Albany Village) with the campus

Student groups

General interest events, concerts, lectures, dances

Way to contact TAs and faculty


*************************************
Note from the focus group leaders: we were also listening for answers to the following questions, whether or not
they were asked of participants directly:
What campus goals would a student portal help to realize?

Centralize all services/links that students need on their customized homepage


(comments included: seems like a portal could be a glorified set of portable bookmarks; could provide
access to their own personalized informational; could support real 2-way communication. The closer we
can get to having all three, the better.)
What benefits might the campus gain from a student portal?

Help staff deliver services to a growing population how *are* we going to serve the increase in
enrollment due to Tidal Wave II?
Help with staff burnout
Streamline processes
Cut paperwork

Appendix XV Portal Providers


Collated Responses to Non-statistical Interview Questions
Responses gathered from:
a. Haas
b. Stanford Enterprise
c. Stanford Student Portal (the initial one by students)
d. UBC
e. UW
f. UC Davis
g. UC Irvine (purely admin portal)
h. U of Texas
i. U of Minnesota
j. UCLA
STUDENT PORTAL GOALS
1) How did you identify the need to introduce a student portal?
a) student requests
b) The student government group was exploring the possibility of a student portal, at the same time
the university administration was exploring the possibility of an enterprise-wide portal.
c) Originally, SSE undertook the project because we knew, being students, that the web resources at
Stanford were completely decentralized and not user-friendly. We did some surveys of students
to see what they wanted, and most students that we talked to seemed to indicate that they would
appreciate a resource that gave them easier access to Stanford web resources. The University
went through a different process, although I'm not as involved with that decision. I did not enter
into the discussion with them until after they had decided that they wanted to do a portal.
d) Was a response to the threat from outside vendors coming to campus who said well give you the
software for free. This would 1) create too many individual portals on campus, and then they
would miss their opportunity to create one system to bring the whole university together; 2) the
vendors said they would own the data. This was not acceptable.
e) Started with an idea that university has different kind of relationships with different people, so a
portal would enable the university to provide personalized relationships (cradle-toendowment) to its stakeholders, constituents
f) The idea for MyUCDavis, originally developed in 1997 and named Gateway, was to address
the increasing need for better faculty-student interaction using the Web as well as provides a
number of administrative and academic functions for students and faculty integrated into a single
web environment.
g) The SNAP portal project is directly tied to the New Business Architecture (UC 2001). UCI has
been struggling with consolidation and organization of web content for a long time. The
administrative portal project replaced earlier attempts to consolidate, standardize, and organize
departmental web pages.
h) Next logical thing to do. We had gone from WebCentral to StudentCentral, to My40Acres, and
need a personalized, customized portal. My40acres was a customized version, but needed to go a
step further. Needed an identity scheme for everyone who has a relationship with the university.
i) The registrar and a bunch of students go together and said, lets do this online (1997). Because it
was developed by a group of students it was not as producer-centric as it would have been if the
registrar wrote it. This took 2-3 months. It was homegrown, not very stable. Took another 4-5
months to get it a little better, but still not very useful. Summer 2001 finally got to a useful
stage.

j) In 1997, L&S Provost initiated Instructional Enhancement Initiative which said that each class
would have a website to extend learning beyond the classroom. Identified 4-5 key features. 1)
description; 2) email address;3) communication tool (chatroom or bulletin board). Splaver on
the steering committee. He wanted to put the study list up so each student could see how s/he
was doing. Then, it dawned on him that if you could know who each student was; you could
make a template, fill it with personal info and have more important information that could
enhance a students experience. Myucla was born.
2) How did you define success for the portal project before you began?
a) System that students use, students provide content to it, easy to update and have it live at all
times
b) Success would come over time (portal to roll out over 2 year period) based on usage, user
feedback and content provision.
c) We were focused on traffic. We didn't define particular numbers, but we looked to traffic to
indicate the usefulness and attractiveness of the service.
d) If people used it; if it didnt break down under mass usage
e) Everybody will use it
f) A project risk assessment was undertaken, which identified risks, obstacles, and mitigations. A
user feedback survey and statistical gathering tools were developed for the pilot implementation.
The survey provided information on what users thought about the organization and usefulness of
the portal. The statistics measured usage by user profiles (faculty, student, and staff), most
popular features, and course management usage.
g) We keep records on hit counts and use these statistics to help us determine the impact of having
information or applications available on SNAP in terms of usage counts. Success would be
indicated by high hit rates. We haven't quantified what "high" really means yet. We also judge
the feedback coming back from users for level of satisfaction. The project is still in
planning/development though so success criteria really need to yet be defined (and we haven't
had the time to do this yet). Success criteria include information and/or access to business
transactions that is easier to find, easier to understand, and supports "just-in-time" training needs
of newer staff. These success criteria are documented in the NBA documents.
h) See Project Plan
i) Did not define success
j) Did not define success
DESIGN PROCESS
3) What were the top 3 requests made by students?
i. Format (color scheme, apps. order, tab order, etc.):
a) Web Team decided to have format consistent with Main Web page
b) N/a
c) N/a
d) N/a
e) N/a
f) ease of customization; ease of locating most used functions; simple but functional look with
appropriate UC Davis branding and without the clutter of commercial sites
g) capability of changing defaults was requested
h) look and feel; navigation; ease of use
i) n/a
j) themes (color templates)
ii. Functionality (on-line registration, buying books, calendar, etc.):

a) single log-in; information on courses & class schedules; fixed/consistent information available to
all (they wanted locked down channels!)
b) calendar; webmail; search/news
c) n/a
d) calendar; student services (registration, etc); web-based mail
e) n/a
f) web-based email; access to (SISWEB) on-line registration & student information; Classes Im
Taking (student class schedule);
g) Search with thesaurus and meaningful matches; "How To" instructions with embedded links to
any related forms or business applications; especially for Human Resources related processes
and policies and other more complex business processes at our campus; Be automatically
subscribed to channels that are important to a person's daily job duties and that are maintained
and current.
h) one-stop shop; personalization/customization ; ease of use
i) reminders
j) web-mail; availability of textbooks
4) What were the 3 main issues you were concerned about in the design phase?
a) ease of update by content providers; intuitive navigation (spent long time on wording of each
button/push tab); ease of connectivity to departmental databases
b) usability; functionality; upkeep/changes
c) What services to provide; Integration with existing University resources; Target audience (grads,
undergrads, staff) and how to serve them.
d) Will the architecture hold up with high usage?
e) provide real services to real people; integration of information/transactions/communication
services;
f) engaging sponsorship and project oversight; b. budget; c. engaging content partners to provide
resources to integrate their systems with the portal (turned out to not be a concern once content
partners saw the value of the portal
g) Simple/Intuitive to use; Subject area driven instead of information organized by department;
Accurate content that was maintained by the subject matter expert
h) Content; speed; reliability
i) how to represent multiple campuses; who controls what channels; look/feel
j) foster communication ; UCLA grade booksee individual homework grades
5) What industry or university portals did you review/consider during the design stage?
a) ARS Digital (MIT); ZOPE; JBOSS; SPIKE (Upenn)
b) We looked at many other university portals, as well as several portals creating using the software
we purchased (Blue Martini)
c) Duke (http://www.devilnet.duke.edu, but it seems to be defunct now), My UCLA, My Harvard.
d) None. Sought to develop leadership within their unit. They looked briefly at UW.
e) 3 years ago there were not many around; looked at Yahoo and MyUCLA (which was just coming
out)
f) SCT Campus Pipeline; GoCampus; infiNET QuikCHECK
g) Many of the uPortal sites - University of British Columbia, UCLA, UCSD, Delaware, and
University of Washington
h) Our own personal experiences; U-Minns My One Stop; U-Dels portal efforts and vision.
We also reviewed several commercial packages before deciding to build our own. They included

Vingette, Campus Pipeline, Oracle, and Blackboard. All UT services use the same toolset, so
they felt it easier to develop their own.
i) n/a
j) n/a
6) What were the 3 top reasons you chose the portal design that won out?
a) cost; match between available technical expertise and system; full featured product which led to
rapid deployment
b) usability; functionality; similarity to other portal designs (familiarity for user)
c) SSE's design approach was less formal than I think this survey is designed to understand. We
aimed to get something up quick, and we never got a chance to do a second version because the
University acquired it.
d) worked it out this way
e) addresses all different university constituencies
f) endorsed by campus committee evaluating portal vendors ; endorsed by Council of Deans and
Vice Chancellors; allowed UC Davis to be in command of its web identity and branding
g) uPortal is in line with our architectural strategic direction; Java-based Architecture standards;
Free; Seemed functional and flexible enough to get us started with a Portal project. We hooked
our campus authentication for Single Sign-on immediately to uPortal, etc.
h) Color; navigation; layout
i) n/a
j) n/a
TIME/PEOPLE
7) If NO outside vendor was used, how many people (and from which units) were involved in the
implementation?
a) 4
b) 12-15 in various % time, as well as many others involved in task force and oversight groups
c) We ran the project with about 5 students overseeing it. It was all contained with Stanford
Student Enterprises (i.e. we didn't host it on University hardware or in any way interact with the
University).
d) 4
e) 2.5
f) 7 staff from Information and Educational Technology: Project Director, Project Manager, Web
Designer/Architect, Web Developer, and three students guided by a mentor
g) 2 people/1 FTE
h) 45 Developers (~14 FTE); About 14,000 hours (at 50K/year); About 150 Total engaged
somewhere in the process of design. (Marketing, training, documentation, roll-out)
i) n/a
j) ~7
8) How long did it take to implement the portal?
a) 9 months
b) 4 months with many months of fore-planning
c) 6 months
d) 8 months
e) 1 year
f) 1 year
g) 3 months work over 8 months

h) 6 months
i) n/a
j) n/a
PORTAL FUNCTIONALITY & CUSTOMIZATION
9) Has the portal had any effect on development of new enterprise applications?
a) Yes (examples): development of events management calendar; Web-based IMAP email
b) as new systems come up, we discuss how they could be integrated into the portal and make sure
others arent implementing things that would be counter to the portal
c) n/a
d) yes, Student self-assessment in high school, can self-admit, consolidated payment and billing
e) yes, employee self-service center; Web interface on student service legacy systems
f) No The UC Davis New Business Architecture initiative is underway and will be the driver for
development of new enterprise applications and their integration with the portal.
g) Yes - Taken resources away from applications not related to the Portal. Forces the single-sign-on
solution to be more prominent at UCI. Motivated a more "service" oriented model of displaying
web content instead of the more traditional "departmental" ownership model.
h) YES This has saved developer time by allowing the developers to focus on service content
instead of navigation and look and feel.
i) YES - paperless financial aid; No longer have a separate financial aid, registrar and bursar. Now
it is the Enrolled Students Services (one office)
j) n/a
10) Do you record higher levels of usage on enterprise application that pre-date the introduction of
the portal
a) No
b) Yes, as everything is not truly integrated portal provides application launch-pad
c) n/a
d) No stats for this.
e) Yes
f) No However, the integration of Payroll/Personnel and Financial Decision Support systems
were recently integrated with the portal in January 2002 and the portal usage statistics for these
systems continue to increase.
g) Don't really keep this information. We should but don't have the time to devote to doing it
accurately.
h) Yes
i) n/a
USAGE
11) What are the top 3 hot applications (most hits)?
a) threaded discussion forums; Web email; log-in special tool (like an application bookmark)
b) content manager; weather; color manager
c) n/a
d) web-mail; things of interest in the community; student services
e) class schedule (w/library reserves, class web-site, textbook list, etc.); registration; calendar (work
now on integrating it with events scheduling and class scheduling)

f) email; (SISWEB) on-line registration & student information; Classes Im Taking (student class
schedule)
g) Service Desk; Purchasing/Accounting Web application; HR Information
h) Class Availability
; Registration; Job Application; What I Owe; Online Degree Audit
i) registration; financial aid; class search
j) n/a
12) What mechanism(s) for user (students, content providers, others) feedback do you have?
a) Computing help desk, student computing committee, assistant dean for computing
b) Email list
c) We solicited suggestions on the site.
d) n/a
e) Help desk, meetings, emails
f) A user feedback survey was developed for the pilot implementation. The survey provided
information on what users thought about the organization and usefulness of the portal. Statistical
gathering tools were developed for the pilot implementation and have been further developed for
the production implementation. There are extensive statistics that measure usage by user profiles
(faculty, student, staff), most popular features and channels, course management usage and more.
A Contact Us link on the portal provides a mechanism to ask questions or provide feedback to
the portal team and content providers.
g) Feedback buttons to send email, A forum on which people can log their comments and respond
to each others.
h) Email, focus groups, help desk, training.
i) Usability testing (see notes at end, very extensive)
j) Feedback from portal site; through campus events, public talks, etc.
13) How did you market the student portal?
a) Student association, student newspaper, computer lab standard set-up on portal page, next year
start with orientation
b) Giving demos for many, many groups, article in student paper, word of mouth
c) We advertised the presence of it, attempted to get other sites to link to it, and developed content
that we thought would drive people to the site by word of mouth.
d) Rolled it out slowly because were unsure what bugs the program might have. In Fall 2000 it was
promoted to new students. Fall 2001 opened the doors and put out a campaign. 1) get units to
think of themselves as service providers and not gatekeepers. In June 2001 had a town hall
meeting for 1.5 days to develop a 5 year plan for IT. Had 4 speakers (including, Steve R. from
UCSD ) to show that you can solve complex administrative problems. Targeted executive board,
deans, academic and senior administrators; lots of work getting right people to attend; president
opened the session. Next day was brainstorming; almost everyone came back.
e) Did not market it at all, yet people found out, used it, told others
f) Flyers were posted throughout campus, ads were displayed in the Unitrans buses, the
MyUCDavis link was added to the UC Davis website, college, and department websites. The
course management module of MyUCDavis provides faculty an easy way to create course
websites and post course materials on-line. Students have access to this site via there Classes
Im taking tab. This creates student-faculty interaction as faculty encourage their students to
access MyUCDavis for course materials such as syllibi, assignments, handouts, etc. One of the
features of the new GradeBook module allows faculty to post individual grade information seen
only by the student via their portal, providing further incentive for students to access
MyUCDavis.

g) Presentations across the campus to a select number of people


h) Banners, Video clips (http://www.utexas.edu/cc/cit/dvp/ut_direct/), Give aways (book marks,
coasters, pens, ) Campus newspaper, Presidential support and push, integrated portal use
into new student , faculty, and staff orientation.
i) Didnt have to; students found it before the article in the paper.
j) n/a
14) How soon after implementation did students begin to use the portal?
a) Within 1 hour!
b) Immediately
c) Immediately, though not in great numbers.
d) Immediately
e) Very soon
f) Immediately
g) Immediately
h) Immediately
i) Immediately
j) Immediately
TECHNICAL MANAGEMENT
15) Who is responsible for the overall technical management of the portal?
a) Associate Director of Computing Services and Systems Group
b) ITSS
c) We ran it ourselves; now the University has their technical department (ITSS) handle it.
d) IT
e) Student Systems through a project manager
f) Web Designer/Architect and Project Manager
g) Admin Computing
h) ITS-Enterprise Information Services.
i) Office of Information Technology
j) IT
16) Who is involved in its technical maintenance?
a) Web administrator, Web editor; How many staff: # 2
b) Since we are still in project phase, we now have 1 project manager, 3 programmers, and 1
content manager dedicated to the project. This group also gets assistance from others in ITSS
org.
c) SSE runs its own Technology Group; How many staff: # 6
d) IT; How many staff: # 1/10 FTE
e) 2 tech leads, + 2 more (one is a liaison with service providers, not technical); How many staff: #
4 (1/2 is the project manager)
f) Web developers web designer/architect; and How many staff: # 4
g) IT person, 1FTE
h) ITS-EIS staff; How many staff: # 5
i) Enterprise web devt; How many staff: # 1.5 FTE to maintain. When putting on new channels, a
few more
j) IT

17) Who is involved in further developing the system?


a) Web administrator, Web editor, Systems analyst ; How many staff: # 4
b) Since we are still in project phase, we now have 1 project manager, 3 programmers, and 1
content manager dedicated to the project. This group also gets assistance from others in ITSS
org.
c) n/a
d) IT; How many staff: # 2.5
e) 2 tech leads
f) Web developers web designer/architect; and How many staff: #
4
g) 0.75 FTE from Admin Computing
h) everyone, 185 staff (IT developers)
i) IT
j) IT
CONTENT MANAGEMENT
18) What office/committee/executive is responsible for general portal content?
a) Executive director of marketing and communications together with Virtual Web Team (mainly
responsible for Web content, by extension for portal)
b) University Communications will be the owner at project end
c) For us, again, it was run as a project by the Technology Group, and they had full domain over the
project.
d) IT
e) n/a
f) NBA (New Business Architecture) Executive Committee, NBA Implementation Workgroup, and
Information and Educational Technology NBA Executive Committee, NBA Implementation
Workgroup, and Information and Educational Technology
g) Administrative Computing Services
h) eUniversity Steering Committee.
i) Committee consisting of CIO, VP of University Services, and head of IT. They have approval
and will assign a default location. This committee is deliberately set at an odd number.
j) n/a
19) Do you have content provider standards for information included in the portal?
a) No
b) Yes; utilize existing web and student code of conduct policies
c) No
d) Not yet (Public Affairs talking about it)
e) no, but they bring systems on-line through IT so they shape the standard as they work on the
integration (the unwritten guidelines are no major graphics for ease of use, servers need to be
reliable, secure, responsive, on-line all the time, etc.)
f) Yes, Integration standards have been developed for 8 levels of integration including:
Simple URL link to external source not integrated with MyUCDavis; Simple URL link to
external source not integrated with MyUCDavis that is compliant with enterprise security; Large
application or content integrated with MyUCDavis; Large application or content integrated with
MyUCDavis that uses enterprise security; Large application or content integrated with
MyUCDavis that uses enterprise security and communicates with the portal environment; Small
set of static content integrated with MyUCDavis (Channel); Small set of dynamic content

g)
h)
i)
j)

integrated with MyUCDavis (Channel); Small interactive application integrated with


MyUCDavis (Channel)
Yes; published document outlining standards
Yes; Templates and CSS
n/a
n/a

20) If yes, how do you enforce these standards and ensure they are maintained over time?
a) n/a
b) according to existing Web publishing and student conduct rules
c) n/a
d) n/a
e) n/a
f) The portal team requires content partners to adhere to the standards to ensure consistent
presentation of applications and content, functionality, and performance of the portal.
g) We have workflow in our content management solution that supports an approval mechanism for
content publication.
h) We have a moderation process for each service that wants to register to be in the portal. Services
are not allowed in the portal unless they conform to the standards. Do you satisfy the look, feel
and navigation? IT provides templates for service providers. These are moderated and tested by
IT.
i) n/a
j) n/a
21) Who is involved in providing portal content?
a) Degree program offices, marketing & communication group, student clubs/organizations ; How
many staff (ballpark) #~10
b) We have a distributed content provision, therefore any group, department or school could
potentially become content providers
c) n/a
d) Comes from different service providers; IT describes how to do and then they just let them do it.
e) groups providing/administering different systems (variable)
f) Portal content requests are accepted from all administrative and academic units. The NBA
Executive Committee approves and prioritizes these requests. Staff has access to the Channel
Builder tool (in pilot), which allows staff to create a channel (with department head approval) for
their unit or service. ; How many staff (ballpark) # variable
g) .5 FTEs from AdCom working on Content Development. 1.5 FTEs from Human Resources
working on content. 1.5 FTEs from Accounting working on content.; How many staff (ballpark)
#4.5 across 3 departments (AdCom, Human Resources, and Accounting)
h) All campus application developers and service; How many staff (ballpark) # 185. These 185
people (application developers) are hired by IT, but go out to all units on campus. They are
small IT teams (IT has been handled this way at UT campus since the 1970s). These people are
trained by IT, though they are paid for and report to their local units.
i) No single content management system; people; depts. using different products; They dont
provide it, but OIT will support it.
j) n/a
PROBLEM IDENTIFICATION (IF ANY)

22) What are the 3 major technical difficulties you have experienced?
a) complexity of system for end-users-new metaphor of communication not well understood (by
staff, too); integrating with existing data services on campus; browser dependence (works only
on MS IE)
b) product requires training; timeframe for development can be long
c) n/a
d) getting the reference code into production; they wanted to be sure the infrastructure was robust
enough to handle the traffic.
e) scaling the system from few hundred users to the goal of 1 million users/week; authentication
integration w/other systems (the library example); refining the person registry database with the
information on users (all the time organized and re-organized)
f) n/a
g) Immature software. This industry is still in its early stages; migration of existing web
applications requires resources that are not part of the portal project; legacy integration of
mainframe applications - we focus only on web applications at this time and are not migrating
powerbuilder or cics applications
h) of Frames; JAVAScript; ADA-browsers
i) volume of traffic/would it scale?; interoperability; stability/capacity
23) What are the 3 major content management difficulties you have experienced?
a) learning curve for staff to create content
b) keeping content up to date; control of content
c) n/a
d) Service providers wanting their information to be mandatory on the page. They deny the
requests Go back and re-think this; reconsider
e) n/a
f) n/a
g) Immature software. This industry is still in its early stages; helping subject matter experts to
learn about the portal goals and participate in - they don't have time allotted for the portal project
and are overwhelmed as it is; teaching business writing skills and the technologies we use to
maintain portal content.
h) Describing Services; Cataloging Services; Informing folks of new services/features/functions
i) n/a
j) n/a
24) Did the project encounter any political difficulties?
a) There is a general split on campus between JAVA vs. everything else users
b) YES (no details)
c) The SSE portal ran up against pretty heavy University opposition, particularly because we were
attempting to underwrite it with advertising.
d) Not really, just people opting in (one of the success factors)
e) Working with people, meeting, talking, persuading; getting buy-in from different departments,
colleges/med centers, alumni association (major hurdle); everyone is independent minded and
think they know better even with a workable system on-line!
f) n/a
g) Yes. There are some ownership issues of web content and it is difficult to negotiate changing
that content to fit the portal criteria for usability.

h) YES. The Executive Leadership Team was key in this. This was a team of the highest level of
university personnelPres, Provost, CFO, some VPs. This was used to break through the
naysayers.
i) n/a
j) n/a
PORTAL EVALUATION ISSUES & AFTERTHOUGHTS
25) What were the 3 key elements of the portal that helped you meet your goals?
a.) ability of students to create content; compatibility between system chosen and expertise of
personnel; synergy among all stakeholders
b. ) flexibility of the product
c. ) n/a
d. ) scalable and works; lightweightthis is a function in decentralized collaboration fashion; not
telling you what you have to do, but making the case for collaborationits better for individuals to
work together
e. ) not having to deal with a bunch a bunch of committees in the initial implementation phase;
implemented, put in place, provided a demonstrable system; not setting expectations, everything that
came out was received with pleasant surprise by most
f.) well developed design and functionality; adoption by students; adoption by faculty
g.) It allows people to subscribe to various channels and customize their "web" to what they prefer
to see and how they prefer to see it; It allows people to log on once and then proceed directly to
portal enabled applications without logging in again; The Portal provides a framework to reorganize
our web content into more meaningful ways for our end users. Additional comment: We chose the
uPortal software because it comes with java source code and lets us maintain vendor independence.
Having the source code has proved to be invaluable in terms of minimizing integration obstacles.
We are also free of commercial advertising.
h.) Executive Sponsorship; Use of Known Tools; Firm Deadline
i. ) applications you have; info seeking tools; Efficiency, effectiveness, satisfaction; campus does an
annual surveyregistration has gone from being rated the lowest campus service to the highest.
j.) n/a
26) List 3 ways in which the portal did not meet some of your goals/expectations?
a.) lack of robust content management (no version control, no content approval or review process)
b. ) integration with other package software on campus; not immediately accepted for its potential
c. ) n/a
d.) set sights too low?
e. ) a long way to go (estimates that it is only 20% done now)
f. ) n/a
g.) It is still not as user friendly as we need it to be; The search capability is not completed yet due
to lack of staff resources; Mandatory channels are still not supported by the software. They are
supposed to be in the next release of uPortal though. The ability to display channels based on a
person's role will be implemented in the next release of uPortal as well.
h.) n/a
i.) access to students w/disabilities; Need large type; sound (they have that now, but it doesnt really
meet the needs of the disabled students)
j.) n/a
27) What benefits do portal users (students, content providers, faculty, staff, administrators)
report?
a.) Decrease of email spam, on-stop shopping (focused source of information)

b.) Great to find so much info in one place


c.) n/a
d.) n/a
e.) Students like it, but the general sense is why shouldnt it be? they kind of expect this thing to
begin with
f.) Students report that MyUCDavis is an excellent tool where they only have to go to one website to
find everything they need. Faculty like how the course management component helps instructors
communicate with their students. Content providers realize the value of being able to provide their
content via MyUCDavis channels or service tabs as a way to get their services or systems available
to a large population. Administrators approved MyUCdavis as a Tier 1 System based on two critical
factors: ability to support the delivery of education, and strategic value to the campus such that
encouragement of widespread use is desirable.
g.) More user friendly information however, there is not enough of it. Other benefits include a
single place for end users to access information from instead of knowing information location by
departments.
h.) One-stop shop, ease of doing business:, new level of expectation for service delivery
i. ) Convenience, accuracy, quicker, puts user in control
j.) n/a
28) If you could go through the implementation of a portal again, what would be the 3 main things
you would change?
a.) have more applications integrated before initial release to grab user attention; expand system to
include alumni from get-go; make system available on wireless palm devices from get-go
b.) n/a
c.) We should have worked more closely with the University from the start.
d.) Have a more mature and stable technology; not a problem now (was then)
e.) use uPortal (did not exist 3 years ago) and not go at it alone (they are actually working now to use
uPortal for developing the calendar component); involve deans of schools/colleges earlier, but not
before the prototype is ready for release
f.) n/a
g.) More staff and financial resources; More usability testing at the very beginning; More emphasis
on the searchability of not only web html pages but also of database information. Much of our
information is now stored in a Sybase database and can not be indexed by a search engine.
h.) Have more time to design portal and use same toolset, b. focus on re-engineering businesses, This
means integrate discrete business processes to give us more info to help the university. For example,
if a student cancels his housing deposit, is it because hes not coming, or because he doesnt want
university housing. If that part of the system talks to other parts, we may get a different picture of
the student, or whats going on. This can be valuable information. Categorize and describe portal
services better. This means defining names for services for people to find things when they search
(e.g., financials called What do I owe?)
i.) They learned by accidentsoon as they had a feature they rolled it out, then added as they went
along. Head of IT thought this was a good thing; the students will ask for more. Head of IT was in
charge of the people soft implementation on campus and was the chief advocate for the portal. He is
the CTO. They are in the process of currently building an all-institutional portal which will have
single sign-on and access to web, registrar, library, applications, newsfeeds, parking info.
Other thoughts: It is an information relationship between people you serve and the staff. With more
information, the student is in greater control of his/her choices. (Example he cites is a student they
were strongly trying to recruit who had considerable faculty interaction before accepting admission;

ended up going to another schoolat the suggestion of the facultybut the point is the choice was
the best one for the student, and empowering.
It is changing the service culture. People come to expect fast, efficient service. Its about service
and joining learning communities together. Its hard to be a prophet in your own land; maybe bring
in someone from another university (like R. Ebeling from UT) to demo.
j.) UCLA is a big place. Students need: 1) to feel they belong; 2) place to hook into. The portal
helps harness their emotional spirit. Get them what they need; give a sense of ownership. It must be
in harmony with users needs. On the students birthday, the system replaces their customization
with a birthday theme. Rather than big brother, students feel remembered and noticed in a huge
institution. In a big school, thats what youre battling: students feel isolated, get easily lost in the
crowd, and can lose their way academically and often admin doesnt realize until a couple of
semesters later when its even harder to help. Example: They will soon put up rules and regulations
with green links (Green links are voluntary). But if a student breaks a rule, it will come up as a red
or yellow, which will automatically bring up the rule and personalize it, not only cite the rule, but tell
them HOW to fix itwhat they need to do. Will also alert a counselor who will come on to their
site with a notice Ive set up an appt for you to come see at XXX time to discuss this. More
efficient use of counseling services. The hard part is 1)User base must feel its theirs, 2)Get people
on campus to understand were all in this together, what it is, where is the portal coming from?
Whos putting this up? How do you advertise? 3) to bring services directly to students for them to
see if they need it.

Appendix XVI: Portal Developers Basic Data


Institutions

University of
Minnesota

UCLA

University of
Texas

UC Davis

U of British
Columbia

U of Washington

UC Irvineadmin portal

Stanford

UCB Haas
Business School

# of students

60000

40000

50000

29000

38000

37500

1850

14000

2000

# of staff

n/a

>3000

17500

10000

20000

13000

8500

200

# of faculty

n/a

n/a

2500

2900

3300

7000

1700

140

Stand-alone project

yes

yes

no

yes, but with support


from campus-wide
community

Strategic project

no

no

yes

no

yes, but with


purpose of
focusing estrategy
no

yes, "secret" until


rolled out

no

yes, for
yes, when student
administrative gov't run it; it was
purposes only
taken over by
univ.
no
yes, once it took
over student
portal
no
no

yes

no

Departmental portal

no

no

no

no

no

no

Institution-wide
portal
Student use only

yes

yes

yes

yes

yes

Yes

yes

yes

no

no

no

no

no

no

no

no-admin only

yes in 1st
iteration; no once
univ. took over

yes

1997-98

Fall 1997

Fall 2000

Fall 2000

Fall 2000

Spring 2000

Fall 2001

Fall 2000; Fall


2001

Fall 2001

95%

97%

>80%

n/a

20%

Date portal went live


Usage% by students
Identifying need

Gathering
information to
corroborate need

Success before
implementation

Registrar and
Started as a
Next step from
student group
management
previous
got together to learning steering
systems
put registration committee and
on-line
expanded in
scope
not in the
beginning

did not

did not do this

did not do this

64%

63%

99%

4%

IT and Educ Tech


identified it in 1997
already

Threat from
outside vendors
coming in to
different depts

IT saw need to
personalize
relationship with
different constituents

Need to
consolidate
Web content;
under NBA
2001 plan

N/a

Surveys, focus
groups,
interviews

Usage rates

Usage rates

Interviews and Focus group looking Focus group; 1/2


focus groups
at prototype
day professionally
facilitated

Usage

Project risk
assessment

Usage rates;
system is robust
(does not break
down)

yes

Student gov't
Students asked for
pushed the issue it through student
by building portal
gov't
alone

Surveys, focus
groups,
interviews, taskforce w/all
stakeholders

Meetings
w/students &
administrators

Usage rates; user


Usage rates;
feedbacks;
students use it and
content provisions provide content to
it; "live" at all times

Portal Developers Basic Data (continued)


Institutions

University of
Minnesota

UCLA

University of
Texas

UC Davis

U of British
Columbia

U of Washington

UC Irvineadmin portal

Stanford

UCB Haas
Business School

User involvement in
design

usability testers

n/a

Focus group
and usability
testing

yes: faculty, staff,


students

no

yes, special
usability testing
developed

n/a

Yes, plus many


services already
existed

yes; released as
pilot

yes: steering
group of staff
from across
campus
HR involved in
testing

used individual
usability studies

User testing/pilot

yes: library,
faculty of
engineering and
student services
No

yes: mock-ups
reviewed,
prioritized, and
edited by students
yes: small student
group tested portal
before release

yes: usability testing


w/different groups

used individual
usability studies

Outside vendor

no

no

No

no

No

no

no

yes

no

What software

METADOT
(shareware)
For newest
version
n/a

home made

home made

home made

UPortal
(shareware)

home made

uPortal
(shareware)

Blue Martini

METADOT
(shareware)

n/a

45/~14 FTE

2.5

12-15 various %
time

# of staff maintaining

1.5

n/a

1/10 FTE

4.5

# of staff further
developing

n/a

n/a

185 campuswide

2.5

0.75

$105K+1.5
ongoing FTE
(for newest
version)
n/a

7 additional FTE

~$30K

$100-250K

4 FTE+ 1/10 FTE


ongoing

n/a

$15K
(hardware)

$2.5 mil./2 years

less than $100K

n/a

6 months

1 year

8 months

1 year

3 months work
over 8 months
period

4 months

9 months

no

no

No

no

No

no

no

no

no

End-to-end

Static
web+interactive

Static
web+interactive

End-to-end

Static
web+interactiv
e+transactions

Static
web+interactive

Static
web+interactive

Yes

yes

n/a

yes

yes

yes

no

Yes

yes

Yes

yes

building now

yes

yes

Yes

yes

no (~30 channels
to chose from)

yes

no

yes

yes

# of staff
implementing

Costs

Time for
implementation of
first release
Advertisement/cost
sharing/fees
Level of services

Single log-on
Role-based
authorization
Open-ended system

Static
Static
web+interactive web+interactive
+transactional
+transactional
(links)
yes (not
yes
complete)
n/a
n/a
n/a

n/a

Portal Developers Basic Data (continued)


Institutions

University of
Minnesota

UCLA

University of
Texas

UC Davis

U of British
Columbia

U of Washington

UC Irvineadmin portal

Stanford

Free content

n/a

n/a

yes

no

n/a

yes

yes

yes

no

Access to offcampus apps.

n/a

n/a

yes

yes

n/a

yes

yes

yes

yes

yes; news
channel

n/a

yes

No

yes-one on MyUW

not yet

no

yes

Free configuration
(aesthetics)

n/a

n/a

yes
(notifications,
events, search)
not completely
free

no

n/a

yes

yes

yes

yes

Usage track built in

yes

yes

yes

yes

n/a

yes

yes

no

no

Content provider
standards

n/a

n/a

yes

yes

not yet

no

yes

no

Formal evaluation

n/a

n/a

yes

yes-of pilot

No

no

no

yes-current Web
ans Student
Rules
no

Meeting the goals

completely

completely

completely

completely

n/a

somewhat

somewhat

somewhat

mostly

Non-removable
channels

NOTE: NOT ALL RESPONDENTS


ANSWERED ALL QUESTIONS.

no

Appendix XVII Illustrative Examples in Portal Development


IDENTIFYING MEED FOR A PORTAL

The University of British Columbia describes their identification process as deliberate


strategic planning in order to prepare the campus for a comprehensive e-strategy. They did it
by focusing on what could be done and demonstrating it with the end user in mind to
convince skeptics of its do-ability and power. Coupled with student focus groups which
showed a strong desire for community-building and more communication (with each other,
professors, campus events) the IT group sought to develop leadership within its own unit by
developing its own in-house system based on uPortal. This helped spread the business risk
while the collaborative process of working with JA-SIG satisfied their own desire for
community building.
DESIGN PROCESS

At the Haas Business School, portal developers spent quite a lot of time designing userfriendly, intuitive labels for the different groups of information/services. Student
representatives were involved in this process.
The University of Minnesota runs usability groups to provide an objective way to look at
design. The Web Development group on campus has a usability consultant on staff who
arranges 6-8 sessions over two days of 6-8 users per evaluation. With 8 users they see about
85% of the problems. Currently held off site in a facility with a two-way mirror (a usability
lab is currently being built on the UMN campus), the design team can witness the process to
assess whether or not the users (called evaluators) can maneuver through the design
comfortably and efficiently. This is done as a mock up (before any coding is done) for each
new application that is integrated into the system.
VENDORS, IMPLEMENTATION TIMELINE, FTE, COSTS

The University of Michigan portal is closing this June. According to the Chronicle of Higher
Education, the main reasons for this painful decision revolve around the costs ($1 million per
year that precluded development/maintenance of other projects and needs), lack of sufficient
progress, limits and dependency imposed by the vendor software, lack of opportunities to
cooperate with other institutions in sharing due to the software lock-in.
FUNCTIONALITY AND CUSTOMIZATION

The University of Minnesota has had several iterations of their portal and will unveil a new
version in Fall 2002. Initially, Onestop appeared and transformed their campus with its clean
design and easy navigation to important university functions. Next came myonestop, which
added user customization, but no greater functionality according to UMN technical staff.
When the upgrade to myonestop was unveiled, everyones ID and password was cancelled,
forcing everyone to enter the system again. They anticipated that roughly half the users
would reapply, but surprisingly, within two weeks, they were back up to 30,000 users, the
same amount as before. Conclusion: students want what feels like their own desktop.

USAGE

UCLA builds usership through providing value and has employed some creative measures to
keep in harmony with user needs. Currently in the design phase is a system which allows
students to review academic rules and regulations. It will exist not simply as a static link for
anyone to look at, but as a system that will recognize if a student has violated a rule, or if s/he
is in a situation where s/he will be unlikely to meet certain requirements. It will notify the
student in a personalized way by citing the applicable section, explaining it, and offering
suggested courses of action based on the students individual situation.
CONTENT MANAGEMENT

At the University of Texas, all services directly on UTDirect navigate, look, and feel the same. Some
service providers dont want the same look and feel because they believe it impedes their
functionality. These become portal affiliates. The portal provides a link to these services by
opening a new window, outside the portal itself.

Appendix XVIII Literature Review


UC2010: A New Business Architecture2 and Future Vision: Student Services at the University of
California3 outline several factors that compel UC to introduce new information technologies, portals
included. The drive for leveraging technology is fueled by the projected growth in the student
population4 which impacts staff work load and general availability of services to students. While most
capital investment is funneled into buildings, through new building projects and extensive remodeling,
more should be invested in information technology since it plays a positive role in mitigating the rise in
service needs for an increased student population, raising the levels of services in general, and
containing staffing costs5.
Another factor favoring the expansion of investment into information technology is the way e-business
is changing expectations in general. The Internet is continually revolutionizing the way daily business in
conducted, and the Universitys stakeholders and customers expect the institution to keep pace with this
trend and upgrade its services accordingly. A UCB Office of the Registrar survey of students (February
2002-ask Rachelle for details) reveals that 94% of them have computers. This generation, raised and
educated in the computer age, expects to conduct as much business as possible through this channel6. A
student portal provides the framework through which UCB manages these e-relationships with its
students7, and builds an Internet-age Berkeley community.
While UC2010 focuses mainly on the general business architecture needs of the entire UC system,
which in our understanding mean administrative and financial applications for management and
administrative purposes, it also specifically declares that the Universitys number one strategy is the
develop[ment] of campus [business] portals that will integrate components of the New Business
Architecture, the discrete enterprise applications. Thus, the development of a UCB student portal
becomes an integral component of the Universitys strategic e-business expansion since the portal will
allow the aggregate entry point through which students, a sizable constituent part of the university
system, will conduct business within the institution, and use at least part of the business applications
themselves.
The main features, and benefits, of a new architecture8 include:

Flexibility and scalability that ensure accommodating growth and complexity without
compromising quality

Reduction of departmental workloads through simplified processes, automation of repetitive


tasks, and increased intelligence of the systems

Time savings in tasks, functions and services

Ability to keep up with constant change (business and information alike)


The portal provides the unifying principle that allows leverag[ing] investments in enterprise systems,
data warehouses, reengineered processes, and staff talent,9 that is, the student portal will provide the
framework through which the four main benefits of the new UC technological architecture will converge
into a dynamic, user-centered system.
We have used the term portal extensively, but the first thing that strikes one when reviewing publications
on the subject is the abundance and variety of portal definitions. Web Portals & Higher Education, in
2

UC2010: A New Business Architecture, at http://uc2010.ucsd.edu, July 2000.


Future Vision, http://www.ucop.edu/regents/regmeet/may01/302attach.pdf, May 2001.
4
60,000 more new students system-wide by 2010 (according to UC2010); UC Berkeley will reach a total of 32,900
(according to the UC Berkeleys Strategic Planning Committees Strategic Academic Plan: Working Paper, March 2002).
5
In UC2010, CISCO attributes a growth of 50% a year to the elimination of intermediate transactional processes and the
provision of staff with all the tools they need through a portal, a self-service business model.
6
Future Vision, p. 12-13.
7
Web Portals & Higher Education, Richard N. Katz and Associates, John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2002. p.11-12.
8
UC2010.
9
Web Portals & Higher Education, p. 2.
3

addition to the already mentioned definition, also notes that a portal facilitates the presentation of the
institutions many faces10, is a client-centered system with role-based access,11, and can become a
CPAD, that is, a customized, personalized, adaptive desktop12. There are many more definition to be
found in the professional literature, and it becomes obvious even from this shortened list that different
stakeholders view and conceptualize a portal according to their respective relationship to it. Service
providers, usually in the peripheral units where the actual interaction with students takes place, seek the
unique opportunity of providing a continually growing number of services more effectively and
efficiently to a continually growing number of clients. High-level administrators see the portal as a
means of leveraging investments in hardware/software technology and achieving organizational
efficiency from the central organizational point of view.
While this diversity of understanding and conceptualizing what a portal is confuses the observer, the fact
that different stakeholders understand the portal in diverse ways and want a portal for different reasons
might prove a bonanza for those who are interested in promoting the implementation of a portal on
campus. The body interested in implementing a student portal should therefore tailor its approach (pitch)
to stakeholders (administration, faculty, staff, students) so that each group can clearly understand the
benefits of such a project not only university-wide, but directly to their own field of endeavors. Showing
each stakeholder group that introducing a portal makes business sense, that it brings actual benefits to
their immediate environment, will create a demand-pull, instead of a supply-push.13
Definition notwithstanding, all sources agree that the portal is part of the institutions strategic technical
infrastructure. Its technical components should include14:
a. single log-on capabilities
b. authentication (CalNET ID for UCB)
c. role-based authorization and ability to serve multi-role constituencies (example: a student is also
an employee, and becomes and alum and a parent of a student)
d. full range of channels from information to targeted business-to-customer e-business (example:
graduating senior rents/buys gown)
e. ability to integrate on- and off-campus applications
f. ability to integrate communication capabilities (email) with applications
g. community building tools (such as, subscription to, participation in, setting up of
discussion/lab/course/different interest groups)
While UC Berkeley is not at the moment equipped to put into place a comprehensive system which
incorporates all these features, a well thought out incremental approach can be taken which will
accomplish not only further development of needed applications within an already existing portal, but
also allow a gradual buy-in from the many stakeholders through a process paralleling the development
itself. Thus a gradual approach, continual trust building through successful implementation of smaller
steps, and build-up of a change-champion-base through successes, will occur at the same time as the
technical development of expanded systems. An iterative approach15 will ensure the step-by-step switch
from first-generation informational portal emphasizing content (UCBs Main Page at present) to the
second-generation portal which incorporates technology applications, services, and processes integration
10

Ibid., p. 113
Ibid., p. 8-10
12
Ibid., p. 36
13
Web Portals & Higher Education, p.125-137.
14
Ibid., p. 1-39.
15
IBS also suggests an iterative process with the introduction of some small-scale projects that should also help in evaluating
the initial investment in technology. See Analysis of the e-Berkeley Applications and Infrastructure, IBS Report for UCB, at
http://callisto.chance.berkeley.edu/eberkeley, February 2001, p. 12.
11

(some of the application for this phase already exist: Graduate Admissions Application Fee Payment, online admission applications, Courseweb, etc.; the student portal will pull all these resources together and
spur the critical need for development of further applications under the e-Berkeley strategic umbrella)
and end with the ideal, or third-generation portal that integrates all this with data, voice and video on a
variety of platforms (handheld computers, wireless networks, etc.)16 .
Investing in the development of a portal that is part of the institutions strategic infrastructure impacts
institutional budgets. All sources agree that the acquisition of portal technology is a long-term
investment which will not bear fruit immediately. However, UC2010 specifically encourages campus
administrators to make these up-front investments and not view them as merely another annual line-item
in the budget17.
The responsibility for development and management of the student portal should reside within a small
group of highly knowledgeable individual at the institutional leadership level18. This ensures that the
institution-wide perspective is maintained and underscores the portals strategic importance. Within the
confines of UC Berkeley, the portal management team should be under the guidance of the E-Berkeley
committee, but it should be stand-alone entity with representatives from both the technical and service
providers sides19. Since ultimately the student portal will either expand to become an all-purpose portal
for all constituencies, or become subsumed into an institution-wide portal for all, the technical side
needs to have representation of the administrative systems on campus as well. Only a full integration of
all student and administrative systems into a customer-centered model will lead to the fulfillment of the
ultimate potential of this technology, and hence all sides, student and administrative technology experts
as well as content providers, need to work together toward this goal20.
From a technical standpoint, the investment in portal technology needs to take into account the ability of
the system to incorporate existing applications and expand, and/or upgrade, to incorporate the new
systems that will come on-line. For this reason, some standardization needs to be maintained. Following
the IBS Reports suggestions21, the connector infrastructure (which a portal is) connecting all other
applications must be built on a single platform. Both the IBS Report22 and the E-Architecture Working
Groups response23 to it agree that the system should be JAVA-based24, and both reports recommend
specifically the use of JA-SIG uPortal25 for a pilot project which will enable the University to evaluate
both the portal technology itself and its feasibility within our institution. Robust and successful student
16

Web Portals & Higher Education, p. 114-116.


Manage Technology as an Investment View technology as an investment, rather than an annual expense, that will yield a
return in exchange for up-front expenditures and assumptions of risk, under Guiding Principles of the New Business
Architecture; Allocate seed money to fund proof of concept models and prototype development, under Next Steps in New
Business Architecture; See also Web Portals & Higher Education, p. 113.
18
Web Portals & Higher Education, p. 103-108.
19
Please note that we define service providers to include faculty members, in addition to administrative and technical staff
providing diverse student services.
20
Web Portals & Higher Education, p. 28-29.
21
Analysis of the e-Berkeley Applications and Infrastructure, IBS Report for UCB, p. 6.
22
Ibid., p. 6-12.
23
Review of the Report from IBS: Analysis of the e-Berkeley Applications and Infrastructure, ITATF, e-Berkeley, at
http://callisto.chance.berkeley.edu/eberkeley, March 2001, p. 3. See also E-Architecture for e-Berkeley, presentation by
ITATF, e-Berkeley, at http://callisto.chance.berkeley.edu/eberkeley, March 2001.
24
Java 2 Enterprise Edition is a framework technology for enterprise-wide component development and interoperability that
is gaining rapid acceptance in industry and best fits the existing architecture and culture of the campus, in Review of the
Report from IBS: Analysis of the e-Berkeley Applications and Infrastructure, ITATF, e-Berkeley, p. 2.
25
JA-SIG stands for Java in Administration Special Interest Group, a consortium of several universities developing shareable
software and a common portal reference platform.
17

portals based on JA-SIG uPortal have already been developed at other educational institutions26. Thus,
there is enough evidence to lead one to believe that a Berkeley student portal based on JA-SIG should be
considered for implementation as the pilot project which will introduce and test the technology for the
UCB campus.
Another technical aspect of the student portal pertains to the authorization/authentication component and
drives the nature of the system as whole. A Horizontal Enterprise Portal, or HEP, is a megaportal
which gives users access to all possible applications they might need. A HEP does not require role-based
access. MyYahoo is an example of such a system. Conversely, a Vertical Enterprise Portal, or VEP,
requires role-based access and provides organization-specific channels, or information, in a customercentric model. BAIRS is an example of the later. Web Portals & Higher Education27 suggests that an
institution should have only one HEP (like our Main Page) which can include several VEPs. In this
scenario, the student portal becomes a VEP imbedded in the campuss general portal, whether the
present Main Page or a re-worked version of it.
In conclusion, Web Portals & Higher Education28 mentions the following general best-practices:

only one horizontal portal at the institution

build portal iteratively (step-by-step)

single sign-on for each user

sign-on must be role-dependent and allow multiple roles

both academic and administrative systems need to be integrated

ability to integrate course software package (focus on fewer packages to facilitate integration)

design should not preclude advertisement and e-business even if at inception revenue generation
is disallowed
In order to align the organization with the portal, policy needs to be aligned with the technology
realities. The policy should include specifics regarding digital identity and access; acquisition, retention,
and disposition of information; rules regarding institutional trademarks and name usage; ownership of
information and intellectual property (both on university side, and on third-person side when using
others products); clear operating principles; definition of classes of information; security (both logical,
physical, and managerial); definitions of authority and responsibilities; and disaster protection 29.

26

Web Portals & Higher Education, p. 97-99, 118-119.


Ibid., p.
28
Ibid. p. 114-116.
29
Ibid. p. 139-154.
27

Appendix XIX Bibliography


Book:
1) Web Portals & Higher Education, Richard N. Katz and Associates, John Wiley & Sons, Inc.,
2002.
UCOP Reports:
2) UC2010: A New Business Architecture, at http://uc2010.ucsd.edu, July 2000.
3) Future Vision: Student Services at the University of California, UCOP Student Services
Taskforce, at http://www.ucop.edu/regents/regmeet/may01/302attach.pdf.
4) Electronic Communications Policy, UCOP, November 2000.
UCB e-Berkeley Reports:
5) Roadmap for e-Berkeley, E-Berkeley Implementation Task Force Report, at
http://callisto.chance.berkeley.edu/eberkeley, October 2000.
6) Building e-Berkeley, at http://campus.chance.berkeley.edu/itf/building_eberkeley.htm, November
1999.
7) Analysis of the e-Berkeley Applications and Infrastructure, IBS Report for UCB, at
http://callisto.chance.berkeley.edu/eberkeley, February 2001.
8) Review of the Report from IBS: Analysis of the e-Berkeley Applications and Infrastructure,
ITATF, e-Berkeley, at http://callisto.chance.berkeley.edu/eberkeley, March 2001.
9) E-Architecture for e-Berkeley, presentation by ITATF, e-Berkeley, at
http://callisto.chance.berkeley.edu/eberkeley, March 2001.
10) Functions for a UC Berkeley Enterprise Information Portal, Revision 2, at
http://campus.chance.berkeley.edu/itf/Revision_EIP2.htm, June 2000.
11) E-Berkeley Management Plan for FY 2002 and 2003, at http://ebsc.berkeley.edu/Management
%20Plan.htm, September 2001.
12) Interim e-Berkeley Policy for Berkeley Campus Online Activities, at
http://socrates.berkeley.edu:7015/e-Berkeley.policy, October 2001.
UCB IST Policy:
13) Information Systems & Technology (IST) Administrative Applications and Data Security Policy
(revised January 7, 1999)
UCB Academic Reports:
14) UC Berkeley Strategic Academic Plan: Working Paper-Key Challenges, March 2002.
15) UCB Academic Senate Committee on Computing and Communications and E-learning Policy
Committee Draft Report, at http://ebsc.berkeley.edu/COMPReport.htm, May 2001.

Appendix XX Portal Option 1

Appendix XXI Portal Option 2

Appendix XXII Portal Option 3

Appendix XXIII Suggested Portal Names


Here is a compiled list of the suggestions we heard from students, faculty, and staff:
A FridgeTooFar
AcademicAwareness&Prestige
BerkeleyAccess
BerkeleyBears
BerkeleyConnect
BerkeleyConnected
BerkeleyConnection
BerkeleyHomePage
BerkeleyInteractive
BerkeleyNet
BerkeleyWeb
Berzerkeley
Cal
CalAndMore
CalCom
CalConnect
CalConnection
CaliforMyAid
CalInfo
CaliPortal
CalLink
CalOnline
CalPal
CalPort
CalPortal
CalStudent
CalWeb
EasyAccess
Epiphany
FiatLnx
InfoWeb
MeBerkeley
MyBerkeley
MyBerkeleyPortal
MyCal
MyUCB
Online Information Resource Homepage
Sather Gate or Sather Gateway
ThePit
UC Berkeley Student Web Portal
UCWebby
UCWink
UCB Students Website
UCBPortal
UCBWebPortal
UCWP
USS Berkeley
WebBerkeley

BearAccess
BearCave
BearCentral
BearCom
BearConnection
BearDen
BearEscape
BearEssentials
BearFanatic
BearGate
BearHome
BearInfo
BearsLair
BearLife
BearLink
BearMinimum
BearNet
BearsPlace
BearPortal
BearWeb
BerkeleyBears
CalBears
CalBerkeleyGoBears
CalCave
CalTrack
Claws
DaBears
GoBears
MyBear
MyLair
MyOski
Oski
OskiOnline
PortalBear
Samirs Portal of Fun
TheCave
WebBears
WebLair

Appendix XXIV Things You Didnt Ask


UCB on UCB: Faculty perspectives on
Faculty
The biggest problem that faculty report as people is feeling lonely. Many faculty even working next
door to each other dont know what one another are doing or are interested inneither the Academic
Senate nor departmental meetings serve to build a way to network; nor to meet like-minded people.
Perhaps there is some way for technology to help people identify each other (potential colleagues)
For example, by listing abstracts of faculty (and graduate?) papers by subject area with a way to get
back to these peoplethis wouldnt exactly build a community, but it would allow individuals an
idea of who to invite to a function
Students
Five out of nine faculty interviewed report that students are not nearly as technologically savvy as
some give them credit for. Some students hate technology (even in what we think of as a high tech
field). Many cannot find useful materials on the internet. Students waste a lot of time on the internet,
for lack of knowing how to do it.
How would faculty like to use technology to improve teaching?

would love to be able to include video and digital reproductions of rare archival materials.

figure out how to teach with the fabulous materials in the Bancroft without damaging the
materials seems like for the first time ever, digitalization might make this possible.

woud like the campus to figure out the bandwidth problem and put in computers with cdrom
writersso that students could, in effect, download the library resources they need onto their
own cd-library

has goal to get all the lecture-type information to the students via the web then converting class
time to forums for discussion.

for students who are in trouble, would like to be able to use registration database to find what
other courses one of her students are taking in order to be able to consult with that teacher

have students be able to do web logging on line to keep a diary of how they feel; what they
are doing; throughout long projects, that the student and professor would both have access to
and which the student could make available to other team/classmates at will. something like
this is now available through the Interactive University, but the technology is still sort of
obstructive.

wants to be able to archive assignments; and have students submit assignments; and have a way
of tracking these over time (archive)
What support do faculty need to include more technology?

incorporate video clips hes got lots of video material that really brings the subject to life, which he
now puts on reserve in the Library but if it was possible to deliver some of this over the web (and
in the classroom) that would be great.

regular access to digital camera;

hands-on tutorials with PhotoShop;

enough one-on-one or one-to-similar-group consulting on how to go from manuscript to


presentation.

make it easy

provide some classes to any on campus who want to incorporate digital images and video (she
knows of others in her same boat.)

funding and staff support

faculty reward converting any significant portion of class into digital requires an obscene
amount of time.

Current technology available to aid instruction

uses Blackboard right now, but finds that the students are pretty daunted by all the security they have
to get through in order to get the information they want.

uses email lists from the registrar office

doesnt use online discussions (classes are small and they have discussion sessions with TAs)

uses ERes to set up pages for his classes and is pleased. It is password protectable. Uses it to send
announcements, post assignments, and weekly to post answers to homework problem sets. He uses
Netscape composer to create the html. Can add any document to the site by faxing it.

WebCT , but its not very friendlywants it easier to customizedoesnt want to have to know
HTMLwants it more graphically organized (a Mac user and has that kind of mind.) Very much
looking forward to CourseWeb and the more sophisticated learning management systems to come