The Master List Method
In creating this system, we collected and integrated several data sources available from the TEA. We did this to reduce the amount of data entry performed for each Participant, while increasing overall accuracy and consistency of the data we collect. This means that the preferred method of adding a new Participant to the DataCenter is by using the Master List method.
To create a new user using the Master List Method...
1. Goto the Participant Detail View, if you are not already there.
2. Click the New - Use Master
button found in the footer section of the screen
The Select Participant dialog will then appear
3. Enter the Participant's full name into the search field.
4. Press the tab key on your keyboard (this activates the search function)
Results will be returned (May take a moment, depending on the speed of your connection and the current server load)
5. Select the correct Participant from the results list. (Even if there is only one match, you must highlight the Participant)
6. Click the Confirm
button at the button of the dialog.
At this point, the dialog will close and you will be presented with a Participant Detail screen showing your new Participant's record. You will notice that many of the fields and sections have already been filled in. You may now edit or add information from the Participant Data Form as necessary.
What if I enter a name and there are no results?
There are a number of reasons why this might happen
1. You typoed the name--double check your spelling. I know the handwriting on some forms is hard to read.How do I enter a Participant who is not in the Master List?
2. The name the Participant used on the form is not the name the TEA knows them by.
3. The Participant is a first year teacher. Due to delays in the collection of this data, some new teachers may not be part of it yet. This is why we're planning to update the Master List each year to keep it up-to-date.
- If the Participant wrote their name as Bob or Becky, be sure to try searching for Robert or Rebecca
- A teacher who has married and changed their name since the data was collected might also prove a difficult case.
4. The Participant is a private school teacher. The TEA doesn't track teachers from private schools.
5. Have I missed anything? Let me know!
Unfortunately, in this case, you need to click the Cancel
button on the dialog and then click the New Record
button on the Participant Detail screen. This will present you with a blank, non-prefilled record which you will enter data into manually.
Furthermore, my suggested strategy for dealing with Participants not in the Master List would be set them aside and first go through and enter everyone you can using the Master List Method. This will then allow you to deal with these special cases separately, without slowing down your process too much.I found the Participant in the Master List, but their school information is wrong. They changed schools since last year.
Note: As this is the first time we've tried using TEA's data, we really don't know how accurate it will prove to be or just how many Participants will need to be entered from scratch. Any information we gather about this issue this year will go towards improving future version of the system. That said, our testing (I took a random sampling of 2007-2008 Participants from the Servoy DataCenter and looked them up in the TEA's list) showed very good results for this method.
As I said before the TEA data is not 100% current and teachers do change schools, so this can happen. To address this situation, I've written a separate article on the School/District lists and the best ways to manage them.