IT News

29 Jul

Information Technology Services will deactivate the unencrypted WVU.MountainAir wireless network on all campuses Saturday, Aug. 9 in an ongoing effort to simplify and improve wireless service. Users should instead begin connecting through WVU.Encrypted.

MountainAir forced users to re-enter their MyID credentials every four hours, regardless of the frequency of the user’s activity. With WVU.Encrypted, users will only need to long with their MyID credentials one time. After that, the network will remember the user in any location on any campus, allowing users to seamlessly roam.

This change will be more convenient for most users and will ensure that people are working in secure wireless environments.

To get started, just refresh the networks on your device and connect to WVU.Encrypted. Please direct any problems or questions to the Service Desk at (304) 293-4444 or ITSHelp@mail.wvu.edu.

To learn more about wireless at WVU, visit http://it.wvu.edu/services/wireless.

22 Jul

A new, more user-friendly version of WVU+kc, an online tool for research compliance, award administration and funding notification, will go live Monday, Aug. 11.

The system is expected to be offline for this upgrade from 5 p.m. Friday, Aug. 8 until 8 a.m. Monday, Aug. 11. Researchers who have already begun questionnaires in the current system MUST complete and submit them before Aug. 8, or the data will be lost. Those who have not begun questionnaires may choose to wait for the new and improved version of WVU+kc.

The changes should be largely transparent to users, but the system should function better and faster.

The upgraded version, developed with input from frequent users, will have fewer questions for researchers submitting Institutional Review Board (IRB) protocols and will be more stable, resulting in fewer errors. Sections deemed not useful have been reduced.

WVU is working closely with officials at Indiana University, another early adopter of Kuali, to discuss challenges and solutions as the product evolves.

Already, WVU+kc is handling 2.5 times more activity, and some faculty members say it’s a big improvement over its predecessor system.

Brent McCusker, an associate professor of geography and chairman of a faculty advisory committee, submitted an IRB protocol at the end of the fall 2013 semester and was finished within three days.

“That’s literally never happened,” he said. “The system itself was just so much easier to figure out.”

McCusker’s research on African farmers in rural Malawi focuses on behavioral science. Under the old system, he had to click “not applicable” dozens of times because his work didn’t involve biomedical testing.

“That has just been wiped away. It was much simpler, much more straightforward,” McCusker said.

“Exempt” studies like McCusker’s account for 50 percent of all WVU research activity, so that benefit has widespread impact on convenience.

McCusker also said he’s pleased that WVU+kc is a one-stop shop: He can now see both front-end research material and post-award information all in one place.

“Is there room for improvement? Sure. Things can always better,” he said. “But compared to what we came from, it’s much better.”

Besides the IRB protocol, WVU+kc features: a Proposal Log used by the Office of Sponsored programs; an Institutional Proposal tool used when a project is officially submitted; a Sub-Award tool to track disbursement of shared funding; and an electronic Green Sheet process, or award-initiation module that has saved 20 hours a week in labor and more than 500,000 sheets of paper over the course of a year.

With WVU+kc, users no longer need to enter the same data three times; now, all related forms are populated with a single data entry.

Nearly three dozen training videos of five minutes or less have been created to help people learn to use the system quickly and easily. Those videos get about 1,000 views a month, and the site has a 60 percent return rate, meaning visitors come back for help on other topics.

WVU set out to become a leader in the Kuali Coeus consortium and was the first university to go live with the IRB module in March 2012. Patience was required at the start, but pages that used to take minutes to load now take an average of just 5-6 seconds.

Crystal Sheaves, a program coordinator at the WVU School of Nursing campus in Charleston, has had a few problems with WVU+kc but says the biggest was a user error: It appeared to her that someone had accidentally deleted an entire protocol that had taken hours to build.

“Initially, I was thinking I was going to have to do all these hours of work again,” she said. Instead, a support person was able to recover the data and rebuild the protocol for her. Sheaves called the technician “a godsend.”

“That kind of service underscores our operating philosophy,” said Dan Vasgird, director of the WVU Office of Research Integrity and Compliance. “We’re just a phone call or an email away.”

For more information on WVU+kc, visit http://kuali.wvu.edu/ or “like” WVU+kc on Facebook. For more about the Kuali Coeus product, institutions that are adopting it and other details, visit http://www.kuali.org/kc.

Question Count Questionnaire Sections.jpg
22 Jul

The voice mail system at Potomac State College of WVU in Keyser will be intermittently unavailable from 8 a.m. to noon Saturday, July 26, during system maintenance.

This work could affect both callers trying to leave messages in the system and mailbox owners, who will have to reset their Personal Identification Numbers (PINs) when the work is complete.

18 Jul

Several services, including MAP, may be inaccessible from 7 a.m. until 1 p.m. Sunday, July 20 while Information Technology Services does maintenance. This means users will not be able to log into MyAccess, MyTime and Data Miner. Wall time clocks should function normally.

Other systems affected include: Electronic Evaluation of Student Instruction (eSEI); electronic Blue Sheet (eBS); eCampus Course Request System (eRS); Fit Tech Author Certification; Athletic Trainer Scheduling (ATSH); the Research Office Administrative System (ROADS); the statistics and strategic decision-making tool IDEAS; and International Culture Collection of VA Mycorrhizal Fungi (INVAM).

ITS appreciates your patience with these updates.

15 Jul

To reflect our new name, Information Technology Services has also changed the email address that students and employees should use when seeking assistance from our Service Desk support staff to ITSHelp@mail.wvu.edu.

As always, customers may continue to submit self-service trouble tickets at http://it.wvu.edu/support/service-desk or call (304) 293-4444. ITS provides telephone assistance from 6:30 a.m. to midnight every day.

Anyone who maintains a University website that uses the previous email address (oithelp@mail.wvu.edu) should change those references to ITSHelp@mail.wvu.edu. However, emails sent to the old address will automatically reroute to the new address.

Information Technology Services reorganized over the summer, merging with the former Administrative Technology Solutions and Student Systems Management. To learn more about our structure or to see an organizational chart, click here: http://it.wvu.edu/who-we-are.

14 Jul

Wireless Internet service will be available free of charge to visitors on the Morgantown campus and the Potomac State College campus in Keyser by Aug.1, eliminating both cost and the need to seek specific passwords from a sponsor.

Information Technology Services is currently rolling out this change to all academic and office buildings, and to the lobbies of residence halls. Steve Belcher, assistant director of networking, said the work should be completed by the end of July.

“WVU.Guest” will automatically appear when users refresh their list of available network, and users will be prompted to complete a brief registration form.

This change will save the University both time and money—about $5,000 a year—by eliminating the need to reconfigure access points on demand. It also saves time for users, who no longer need to request a password. ITS also anticipates a savings of about $12,000 per year by changing guest network providers.

Soon, WVU employees also will have the ability to register people in advance for large events on campus such as conferences. That feature will be tested this fall.

To learn more about WVU wireless service, visit: http://it.wvu.edu/services/wireless

For the latest on tools, outages and more, follow @wvuoit on Twitter, “like” WVU Information Technology on Facebook or visit http://it.wvu.edu/.

14 Jul

Students and faculty will be able to access WVU eCampus on mobile devices starting this fall by downloading the new Blackboard Mobile Learn app.

A mobile application that brings two-way teaching and learning to iOS and Android devices has been the most-requested feature from both students and faculty members. Information Technology Services will provide details about availability and downloading instructions as the launch date approaches, so please watch for updates.

The simple, intuitive app gives students full access to their course information directly from mobile devices. Designed specifically for the iOS and Android platforms, the app lets students check grades and assignments, view documents, create discussion and blog posts, and much more. Instructors can post announcements, view class rosters and perform other tasks.

For the latest on tools, outages and more, follow @wvuoit on Twitter, “like” WVU Information Technology on Facebook or visit http://it.wvu.edu/.

2 Jul

Information Technology Services has added the email addresses of all 3,750 WVU Health Sciences employees to the Office 365 directory. That means HSC employee names can now be found when users are adding them into Outlook email.

The change, completed June 30, also gives non-HSC users the ability to invite Health Sciences employees to meetings and view their free/busy calendars. However, HSC employees cannot do full calendar sharing with other employees.

The address book will be updated automatically and daily, so employees do not need to take any action.

ITS also is updating the Office 365 address book to ensure that “department” fields have correct information. After July 2, the department field will match the employee’s department in the Human Resources system. It may take a day or two for these changes to synchronize to all WVU machines.

Again, users do not need to take any action. These changes will appear automatically.

Please direct any problems or questions to the ITS Service desk at oithelp@mail.wvu.edu or call (304) 293-4444.

For the latest on tools, outages and more, follow @wvuoit on Twitter, “like” WVU Information Technology on Facebook or visit http://it.wvu.edu/.

1 Jul

Starting July 1, the help desk at Information Technology Services will provide telephone assistance from 6:30 a.m. to midnight every day.

The previous overnight staffing is being eliminated because of low demand for assistance during those hours. The bulk of requests typically come during the Service Desk’s core hours, which are 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. During core hours, ITS provides Outbound Support, Advanced Support and other specialized services.

The ways to get help remain unchanged: Submit a self-service trouble ticket at http://it.wvu.edu/support/service-desk, send a message to oithelp@mail.wvu.edu or call (304) 293-4444.

ITS tested core-hour staffing over the 2013 Christmas break, with positive results. ITS also has been increasing automatic monitoring of the data center to alert key personnel to any after-hours problems.

This staffing change also is part of the department’s continuing effort to be more efficient while continuing to provide an effective service.

Please direct any questions or concerns to oithelp@mail.wvu.edu.

26 Jun

To finalize all financial transactions in STAR and send them for year-end processing, Information Technology Services will be taking STAR offline for about eight hours starting 4 p.m. Monday, June 30.

June 30 is the end of the University’s fiscal year. STAR, the student information system, will be unavailable from 4 p.m. June 30 until 12:30 a.m. July 1.

The Registrar’s Office also reminds faculty of a key date change: The deadline to submit grades for the first six weeks of the summer term has been changed from Tuesday, July 1 to Wednesday, July 2 by noon.

For the latest on tools, outages and more, follow @wvuoit on Twitter, “like” WVU Information Technology on Facebook or visit http://it.wvu.edu/.