In Full Fabric, such as in higher education, a transcript is the official school record of a student's academic activities and performance for a given class, possibly including items like courses taken, grades earned, credits received, degrees awarded, and others. With a symbiotic relationship with study plans, there are roughly three stages to managing these documents: building the templates, creating academic transcripts and then printing them. 🖨 Below we'll explain the whole process. 😃
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How do I create transcript templates?
As with letters (if you're familiar with that module), all academic transcripts derive from standardized templates, which, in turn, start out as MS Word documents that you must upload onto Full Fabric. For the content of these .docx files to be correctly read, understood, and populated by the system, it must be structured in a specific way and employ merge fields.
Merge fields are placeholders for the unique student data stored in Full Fabric that you want to add to the transcripts, such as someone's final grade for a course, the names of their courses, etc. Upon generating a transcript, the merge fields are automatically substituted with the correlating data for that profile. Merge fields are inserted inside the MS Word document through Word's Mail Merge feature, after which they take their name.
Creating a transcript template via Microsoft Word
As mentioned before, transcript templates are Word documents, created either in Microsoft Word 2007 or a later version and saved with the .docx extension. Here's an example of one:
The snippets of text in guillemets (« ») are the substitution tags for the merge fields; for instance: =degree_class, =course.final_grade, =final_grade_percentage, etc. The guillemets are automatically added by Microsoft Word when you configure a substitution tag as a merge field: =degree_class then becomes «=degree_class», =course.final_grade becomes «=course.final_grade», =final_grade_percentage becomes «=final_grade_percentage», and so on.
For the sake of comparison, here's an academic transcript based on the above template:
It's up to you which substitution tags to include in the templates, making them highly customizable. Having said that, some considerations must be taken into account in terms of structure, namely when trying to retrieve lists of courses.
To zoom in on this topic, let's zoom in on the images and throw in some borders as well:
As you can see, what the borders reveal is that each list – which, in reality, are one and the same –, is actually a table. So that answers question one: how must lists of courses be formatted? You guessed it: tables! 😉 That way, the system can easily add new lines as new courses are taken throughout the program.
Question two is: how does the table at the top become the table at the bottom? By recalling Aristotle's lesson on stories: that they must have a beginning, a middle, and an end! In short, if you want a transcript to feature a list of courses, you must delimit the list so that the system can orient itself within the document and figure out not only where to place this particularly mutable block of information, but also how to contain it in place as it expands to avoid the content spilling over and breaking the formatting. Let's splash some color on the cells to clarify what this means:
Highlighted in light orange, you have the merges fields which delimit the list, not unlike property lines. Because they help you outline the boundaries of the "territory" (as a manner of speaking), they're not meant to be replaced by data and are not visible on transcripts. Essentially, they serve the same purpose as that of the quintessential white picket fence (except for fences always being, you know, visible, what with consisting of material matter and all 😅).
Finally, highlighted in light grey in the middle, you have the merge fields which produce the actual courses, whereby each column returns a different value, such as the course code, the course name, the course credits, the final grade, and more. One single row will automatically multiply itself into however many courses a student has taken, so there's no need for more.
Transcript substitution tags and how to add merge fields to Word
It's now time to take a closer look at the merge fields: what they are and how to insert them into a Word document.
Here's a list of the main substitution tags you'll need for a transcript template:
Shows the name of the programme.
Shows the Subject name.
Shows the Subject code.
Shows the custom transcript name instead of the standard name (provided that, in the Course details area of the academic calendar, you picked Yes under Allow custom transcript course name – more information here). Especially useful for project-centered courses, because it allows you to display the name of each student's individual project, such as the name of a thesis.
Shows the student's final grade for the program – in other words, the average of the marks obtained in each course, automatically calculated by the system (provided that the grade was set to be quantitative and include partials, as well as to be displayed in the transcript as an average).
Shows the final grade for a course.
Shows the final and partial grades for a course.
Shows all partial grades for a course, separated by a comma (,). For example: 15, 20, 12.
Shows the total number of credits that the student has been awarded for the entire program.
Shows the total number of credits that the student registered for the entire program.
Shows the total number of credits required for graduation for the entire program.
courses:each(course) & =course:endEach
Combined, these two show the list of courses a student has taken, as explained and demonstrated in the previous topic.
course.category.XYZ.courses:each(course) & course.category.XYZ.courses:endEach
A variation of the above codes incorporating the categories in the study plan to only grab courses from a given category, whereby the name of the category goes where the XYZ is. For instance, supposing you have a category named Final MBA Assessment, the resulting pair of codes would be: course.category.final_mba_assessment.courses:each(course) & course.category.final_mba_assessment.courses:endEach.
Shows the Degree class that the final course grade corresponds to (for instance, Excellent, Satisfactory, Not Satisfactory, etc., as defined in the study plan).
Same as =degree_class, but in Spanish.
Same as =degree_class, but in German.
Same as =degree_class, but in French.
Same as =degree_class, but in Dutch.
Because a transcript is fundamentally a document, letter substitution tags also apply, such as to display dates, entries from the profile Info tab, and more. Please read this article to find out more about these.
Last, but not least, to learn how to insert a merge field into a Word document, please come here.
Uploading a transcript template to Full Fabric
So you created your Word document, formatted it to look all nice and pretty, added some merge fields, and deemed it ready to go live. Fantastic! 👏 To upload a transcript template to Full Fabric, simply do as follows:
1) Click the gear at the top right-hand corner and choose General settings
2) Navigate to Documents and then to Transcript templates
3) Press the Create a new template button at the top-right corner
4) Title the template under DESCRIPTION
5) Tap Choose file to select the file to upload
6) Once all is said and done, click Create template
You'll be automatically redirected to the TEMPLATE DETAILS area, where you can determine the settings of your template. We'll discuss it below.
Accessing your school's list of transcript templates and editing an existing template
if you want to see the list of transcript templates of your school and edit one of them, it's quite easy!
1) Click the gear at the top right-hand corner and choose General settings
2) Navigate to Documents and then to Transcript templates
3) Press the gear at the end of whichever row belongs to the template you want to access
The settings of a template comprise two tabs: Details and Schema.
Let's start with Details:
About the control to Show references for courses which do not count towards final grades and credits?, it gives you the option to either hide the † and * symbols from transcripts or use them to signal final grades and credits, respectively.
The next field, Allow Students to download this transcript template?, lets you decide whether or not you want to make that particular template available for download to students. No is selected by default, but when switched to Yes, students will see a button to Download transcript on the top-right corner of their Transcripts page.
Finally, Only Include Units lets you specify which courses you want to display in the transcript by default: courses which have published grades, courses which have a final grade, courses which count towards the final grade, and/or courses which the student has passed. The same choice is also offered when printing a transcript individually.
To delete a transcript, click the X next to it in the transcript overview. This action is irreversible.
How do I create academic transcripts?
As with most things in Full Fabric, there are two ways to create academic transcripts: manually and automatically.
The manual approach is for creating individual transcripts (that is, one at a time). To do so:
1) Enter a student's profile
2) Scroll down until you find the relevant class on the right sidebar
3) Press Click here under Transcript
The system will immediately comply, producing a new transcript according to the study plan.
As for the automatic approach, it's for creating transcripts in bulk, accomplished by setting up an automated workflow with the action Create a transcript – either as a class automation, an offer automation or a lifecycle automation.
Here's an example of a lifecycle workflow: when a user transitions from one lifecycle state to another, the system automatically generates a transcript for that user:
TIP: If you have a lifecycle or a class automation in place, since the trigger is profile state transitions, you can further expedite the process by accessing the class overview, ticking a bunch of profiles and changing all of them to a student state at once, thereby prompting the system to create all of their transcripts simultaneously:
How do I add subjects to a transcript and then edit them?
When you create a transcript from scratch, it inherits the subjects in the study plan of the corresponding class by default, which are inventoried under NO REGISTRATION because the would-be student isn't registered in any course yet:
But what if the student is involved in more courses than those currently in the study plan? Typically, this could happen due to two hypothetical scenarios:
Because a student wants to take an extra course not in the regular curriculum;
Or, more commonly, because a student flunked a course and must retake it (or, to be more technically accurate, take a later course from the same subject).
Rest assured, whenever you add a new course to a study plan from which transcripts have already been generated, that course is automatically added to all existing transcripts (under NO REGISTRATION, naturally). More information on that here. But we also have a solution for situations when it makes more sense to only add the new course to an individual transcript because nobody else has any use for it:
1) Access the academic transcript in question
2) Click Add course
3) Fill in the details and press Add course to transcript, like so:
BAM! One more for the NO REGISTRATION crowd! 🍻
To individually edit a course directly in a student's transcript, you must first ensure that the student is registered in it. Once that's done, click the gear at the end of the row – which will take you to the COURSE DETAILS page –, and make the changes there:
By the way, when staff generates a transcript for a student, the transcript will list the courses in the same order as in the study plan: alphabetically by subject name (from A to Z) or chronologically by earliest course start date (from January to December). Sorting by subject name is the default.
How do I register a student in a course?
As previously explained, transcripts inherit the subjects in the study plan by default, on top of which you can manually add more. With all of this going on, it's thus necessary to determine which of the subjects in the study plan actually concern the student and register him or her in the appropriate courses. To achieve this, you may use one of two methods:
Either the Register for courses function inside the transcript, whereby the courses are made available in a dropdown menu to select from:
Or the Register tab of a course in the academic calendar – concretely, its REGISTER STUDENTS function, through which you can REGISTER students one by one or in bulk by clicking REGISTER ALL:
Depending on how the study plan was built, the latter might be the easier route. That's because, when creating a study plan, you're required to pick the courses you want for the subjects you want (one of the options being All courses), but the more courses are associated with a subject, the greater the chances of confusion when attempting to select one in the transcript. If that sounds like a possibility, consider using the academic calendar to avoid the risk of mix-ups. 😉
On the downside, registering a student through the academic calendar is only viable so long as the course has been added to the study plan of the class that their transcript is for (or All courses was selected for that subject in the study plan).
How can I view, analyze and print a student's transcript?
When it comes to viewing and printing a student's transcript on the staff side, there's an option to do just that inside individual transcripts, namely the Download transcript button on the top-right corner:
When you click it, you're asked to choose a transcript template, which courses to include and the export format:
Nevertheless, you can also print transcripts in bulk inside the class overview of a given class. That's because, when a class progresses to the state IN PROGRESS, a new tab becomes available named Transcripts:
As the name suggests, the Transcripts tab presents a list of every profile in that class that has a transcript. The column picker (the icon with three vertical bars) lets you define which columns you wish to be visible in your list – and, by extension, your export of the list, which you may download by pressing the vertical ellipsis and then Export list to CSV or Export list to Excel. In it, you may include profile fields, journey fields, transcript fields and more; however, please note that the transcript fields don't display data for each course, but rather totals and averages.
Also accessible through the vertical ellipsis, Export all transcripts produces a ZIP file containing the actual transcripts, sent to you by email:
You're given the same customization options as when downloading an individual transcript:
The back office view of an academic transcript is very detailed, as can be seen below. All of the key information is front and center: the name of each COURSE, if it's Core or Elective, how many CREDITS and HOURS it is, the student's ATTENDANCE history (for example, number of attended and missed sessions, present percentage, and so on), the track record of GRADES, the degree class, and more.
Most of the data is so straightforward that it speaks for itself, but whenever in doubt, just hover your mouse cursor over a data point for an elucidative tooltip to pop up:
The values are continuously updated in real-time. Take the attendance percentage, for instance: it's the number of sessions where attendance was marked as present, divided by the number of sessions that the students have potentially attended so far (which, in turn, is the total number of sessions minus the number of sessions with unknown attendance). Simply put:
Below we share two examples to make this concept clearer:
In this example, Nova Mae was present in 4 lectures, absent from 1, and her attendance is unknown for 2 sessions. 7 is the total number of sessions that the course has had so far.
Attentance percentage: 4 ÷ (7 - 2) = 0,8
0,8 * 100 = 80%
In this other example, Nova Mae was present in 1 lecture, absent from 1, and her attendance is unknown for 5 sessions. 7 is the total number of sessions that the course has had so far.
Attendance percentage: 1 ÷ (7 - 5) = 0,5
0,5 * 100 = 50%
This is a running percentage, meaning that if only one session has occurred so far, and the student was present in it, his or her attendance percentage will be 100%, despite there still being more sessions in the future. The same principle applies to the grade average, the degree class, and the other values.
How can students view and print their own transcripts?
Students have their own Transcripts area where all of their transcripts are aggregated. Browsing one's transcripts is always permitted, but transcripts can only be downloaded if the operation was antecedently authorized by staff.
If you're accessing Full Fabric via a student profile and said profile has a transcript, here's how you can view it and extract a copy:
1) Click on the profile name on the bottom left-hand corner to open the profile menu
2) Press Transcripts to find that profile's collection of transcripts, separated by tabs
3) Navigate to the appropriate tab (ergo, transcript)
4) Click Download transcript on the upper right-hand corner
5) Lastly, select a transcript template and tap Download
If no template is selected and you press Download anyway, the request will fail and return an error message: Missing default template. Please provide one or choose some template on the list.
As indicated earlier, the order that the courses are displayed replicates that of the study plan: alphabetical by subject name (from A to Z) or chronological by earliest course start date (from January to December). Sorting by subject name is the default.
The student view of a transcript doesn't necessarily have all of the same information that's on the staff view. More specifically, the transcript grade average, the transcript grade percentage and the degree class aren't displayed by default on the student view, only the final grade for each course, though they're always displayed on the staff view. It's on managerial staff to decide whether or not to share these with students. If you'd like to, drop us a line and we'll turn their visibility on.
You have reached the end of this article. Thanks for reading! 🤓 If you have any questions or comments on the topic at hand, or if you enjoy reads like this and have article requests, let us know. Also, please leave a rating below. Your feedback is highly appreciated! 💖
PUBLISHED: July 1, 2021
LAST UPDATED: December 15, 2021 at 6:01 p.m.