As you are aware, you will be submitting PittForms and generating PittForms summary reports throughout your P4 year. While this process has been working pretty well, there are three aspects of it that have needed an update. These are:

  • The overall process and need to wait for a summary report
  • The sluggish performance if too many students are in the system at the same time
  • The inability to know how many of your surveys have been counted before you generate a report

A more detailed explanation of these follow the beta test instructions below.

How to Beta Test the New System

Overall Process and Waiting

The Current Process: Wait Overnight

In the overall scheme of things, you enter PittForms into a Qualtrics survey, and then you wait before you can generate a summary report. This is because the reporting database is a totally separate thing from the Qualtrics survey itself.

How long do you have to wait?

Depends on when you enter the forms. If you enter forms at 3PM on a Tuesday, these Pittforms won’t be in the reporting database until 10AM on the next business day- Wednesday. If you enter them on a Saturday, you end up waiting until after 10AM on the following Monday.

This waiting period is confusing to students, and inconvenient. So a new process has been developed to be easier to use and faster.

The New Process: Wait 15 Minutes!

Soon, when you enter your PittForms in Qualtrics, you will only need to wait about 15 minutes before you can generate a summary report! That’s because the new database goes to Qualtrics and automatically retrieves your completed Qualtrics surveys every 15 minutes.

So, if you enter a Qualtrics survey at 8:10PM, it will be transferred to the database at 8:15PM, and be counted in your summary report by 8:20PM. No more waiting overnight to get a summary report! Just give yourself about 15 minutes between entry and any request for a summary report and you will be good.

Sluggish Performance:Reports Before Deadlines

The other change that we have made is to improve the calculation engine so that it doesn’t slow down to a crawl when so many students are trying to generate a report the day your report is due. Each summary report uses 260 calculations that must be done to prepare your report from your Qualtrics data. That’s a fair amount of computing, and when lots of students are hitting the reporting database at about the same time, it can get sluggish.

How Many Surveys Have I submitted?

Reviewing student data, it appears as if many students generate a report, just to see how many PittForms they have submitted, then submit some more and then generate another report. This use of reports simply to get a count taxes the system to work harder.

In the new reporting database, you can now, enter the date range for your report and the first thing you will quickly see is a window that displays the total number of PittForms in the date range. You can then, either leave the system or generate a report.

 Shows number  of PittForms with option to generate a report or cancel.
New dialogue box shows number of PittForms prior to generating a report

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