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NursingCAS News
March 2012

Happy Two-Year Anniversary to NursingCAS!

Enhancements for Next Cycle: No Two-Week Closure
Advisory Group Updates

Enhancements and Improvements Made this Cycle

NursingCAS Terms & Information Refresher

Attend an Open House, Forum, & Facilities Tour at NursingCAS Headquarters in Boston, MA
Help NursingCAS Grow

 
Advisory Group Updates
Dr. Tim Gaspar, Dean at the University of Toledo, has completed his term as NursingCAS Advisory Group chair and will move into a new role to assist with NursingCAS as the Chief Dean Liaison. Thank you Dr. Gaspar for your outstanding service! Nancy DeBasio, the Dean at Research College of Nursing and current advisory group member, will now serve as the Advisory Group Chair. Welcome Dr. DeBasio! If there are any issues or topics you would like to bring forth to the advisory group for discussion, please email Caroline. The next in-person advisory group meeting is scheduled for June 11.
 
Contact:
 
Caroline Allen
NursingCAS Manager
202-463-6930 x258
 
Contact Caroline with any updates, questions or comments, especially in reference to any of the items addressed in this newsletter.

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Happy Two-Year Anniversary to NursingCAS!
We have come a long way since NursingCAS launched on March 31, 2010. First of all, we would like to thank you and commend you for being a leader among your colleagues by embracing this technology and helping to streamline the entry into the nursing profession. Consider this a virtual hug for embracing NursingCAS and helping us make it better for you and your applicants. Speaking of making it better, see the next news item for enhancement information for next cycle.
 
Enhancements for Next Cycle
Most importantly, NursingCAS will not have a two-week closure this summer. Instead of the closure, there will be a 3-day maintenance period on August 7 – 9 that will allow for some important enhancements to be made and minimize service disruption. Schools will not need to change any program deadlines, and applicants will not need to go through the “re-applicant” process. All applicants in the system prior to August 7 will still be in the system after August 9 when the application re-opens. Below is a list of the enhancements that will definitely be implemented during the maintenance period. There may be additional enhancements that will be deployed, and we will keep schools updated on any additional items.
 
Application Enhancements:
  • Nursing GPA - Courses with a nursing prefix will be calculated into a Nursing GPA and available to you in WebAdMIT. Please complete the short nursing course prefix survey so we have sufficient data for the verification staff to be able identify which courses should be included in the Nursing GPA.
  • Upload Size Increase for the CV/Resume section – Applicants will be able to upload a larger file that can contain not only their CV or Resume but also any other documentation the applicant will need to provide in order to be considered for admission. Note this information will all need to be uploaded in the form of one document, even if it is multiple items.
  • Open Dates Posted for Program Designations – On the designations page an open date for programs can be posted next to the deadline so applicants can be aware and plan for when applications will begin to be accepted for a specific program.
  • Supplemental Link Posted on the Designations Page – Currently a link to supplement school-specific information is only posted on the participating programs page. The supplemental link (if a school provides one) will be posted on the designations page so applicants can more easily access school-specific application information and instructions.
  • Text to Indicate if a School only Allows Applicants to Select One Program Designation – In order to help cut down on the issue of applicants applying to more than one designation at schools who limit the number of designations an applicant can apply to, text will be posted on the designation page in the school listing in a more visually appealing and impactful way.
WebAdMIT Enhancements:
  • WebAdMIT Portal Will Remain the Same Before and After the Maintenance Period Last cycle after the closure schools needed to log into two different WebAdMIT portals to see applicants who applied before and after the closure. Schools will log into the same WebAdMIT portal (your current portal) to view applicants who applied before August 7 and after August 9.
  • Schools Will Have the Ability to Manage Their Own Designations in WebAdMIT – A designated user at your school will be able to log into WebAdMIT to add and edit your program designations that will then be published on the NursingCAS application. Currently, you need to contact Caroline to arrange for designations to be added, edited, or for deadlines to be extended.
  • WebAdMIT Scoring Module – Schools will be able to enter in their own rubric into WebAdMIT to score applicants.
More information about the launch of next cycle will continue to be made available to schools in the coming months. If you have questions please contact Caroline at 202-463-6930 x258 or callen@aacn.nche.edu.
 
Enhancements & Improvements Made This Cycle
Customer Service Updates
A new Customer Service Manager, Mike Noel, started in February and brings over ten years of experience to his role at Liaison International. There are six customer service representatives who are specifically for NursingCAS. Customer service hours will be extended until 7:00 PM Eastern time (6:00 Central, 5:00 Mountain, and 4:00 Pacific) in mid-April. A new phone system will be implemented as well in April that will help NursingCAS to listen, monitor, and track calls by each representative in order to improve service. NursingCAS is continuing to work to improve the customer service it provides applicants and to keep call wait times down. NursingCAS has received 43,767 calls and the average wait time has been 2:03 (two minutes, 3 seconds) this cycle. If you have an applicant who has a customer service complaint, please get as much detail as you can from the applicant, specifically what date and time they called, the name of representative they communicated with, and the particular issue, and email Caroline immediately so we can address concerns quickly.
 
Applicant Communication
NursingCAS is now on YouTube. Encourage applicants to visit or subscribe to the NursingCAS YouTube channel to watch helpful videos on how to complete an application, enter in course work, and to learn more about how the verification process works.
 
NursingCAS is on Facebook. Encourage applicants to “like” NursingCAS on Facebook to access application tips, reminders, and other important information.
 
In December, NursingCAS launched a monthly newsletter for applicants, NursingCAS Connections. To view past issues click here. Remember, you can communicate with your applicants directly through WebAdMIT. Or if you would like to get a message out to the entire applicant pool in the system (there are currently about 30,000), contact Caroline to schedule a relevant email blast. 
Improvements to the Application
Application Homepage
On the Application Homepage, a “What is this?” link has been added next to the Quick Status Menu so applicants can click on it for an explanation of what the Quick Status menu is and what they can use it for. This information has been added to the FAQs too.
 
 
Also, on the Application Homepage, a “What is this?” link has been added next to the Designations section so applicants can click on it for an explanation of what Designations mean and what this area of the application is for. This information has been added to the FAQs too.
 
 
A short Video on How to Enter in Coursework has been posted on the Application Homepage under Quick Actions and in the Coursework section of the application. Feel free to share this video with applicants. It is posted on the NursingCAS YouTube channel as well.
 
Designation Specific Personal Statements
If an applicant forgets to attach a personal statement to their application when they first submitted it, they can now log back in attach it if the program requires it. Instructions on how to attach a Personal Statement to a Designation are posted here.
 
WebAdMIT Updates & Reminders
All of the following updates are available now in your WebAdMIT portal.
Comparative Reports
Comparative Reports provide summaries of applicant data for an individual program and the entire NursingCAS pool. Comparative Reports are available under the Report Manager. These reports may be run at any time during the application cycle and may be run against any List of Applicants. To learn more about Comparative Reports, review this four-page PDF guide.
 
Personal Statement Panel in WebAdMIT
The statements completed by applicants are now visible on the applicant details page. A new panel, called “Personal Statements” will show each of the statements that an applicant has designated for your program. The contents of each statement may be viewed on screen in the “Details” panel.
 
Education Panel in WebAdMIT
The education panel, available on the applicant details page, displays information about the applicant’s education history, including their higher education history, School Name(s), Dates Attended, Degrees Awarded and Majors, and High School(s) and Dates Attended.
 
Undelivered Reasons Available in Notes Section in WebAdMIT
To determine why an applicant is in the Undelivered Status, click on the Undelivered Queue and click on an applicant’s record then click on the Notes section to see the Undelivered Reason. Explanations on reasons why applicants are undelivered are available in the WebAdMIT FAQs.
 
Reminders
Hide Program Designations from View in WebAdMIT
If you no longer need to view applicants to a particular program designation in WebAdMIT because you are done reviewing for that program, then you can go into your Account and click on Edit My Account and then under Program Assignments check off the Program Designations you no longer wish to view in your portal.
 
How to Access Cycle 1 Reports
If you participated in NursingCAS during cycle one (March 31, 2010 – August 1, 2011) you can run End of Year reports. Please read the instructions on how to log in, access, and run several different types of year end reports.
 
Schedule Training
If you need help with setting up your WebAdMIT portal or have questions on how to do certain tasks in WebAdMIT, contact the the support team to set up a Webinar training session at webadmitsupport@academicsoftwareplus.com or 716-636-7777, option 7. Visit the NursingCAS Resource Center for additional help.
 
NursingCAS Terms & Information Refresher
Verification
NursingCAS verifies the course work information that applicants report on their application against their corresponding official transcripts to check for any discrepancies. If an applicant has major errors or omissions in their course work entry, NursingCAS will consider the application incomplete and “undeliver” it to an applicant in order for them to make the necessary corrections. Verification takes 10-12 business days and applicants do not enter the verification queue until ALL official transcript(s) are received. Read more about Verification and view a flowchart of the Application Process here. Or view a video on the verification process.
 
  Deadline Extensions
If you need to extend a deadline for a program designation, please e-mail Tania Zavarelli, Manager of Application Services. Include the name of the designation(s) and the deadline extension date. Additionally, NursingCAS can send a blast e-mail out to the applicants in the system to notify them of the deadline extension. If you would like to extend the deadline only for an individual applicant or a group of applicants, then please include the name(s) and NursingCAS ID number(s), as well as the exact program designation(s) they are applying to and the deadline extension date.
Mail Processing
This cycle, NursingCAS has received 8,519 pieces of mail per week. During peak time the number has increased with 19,804 being our largest week in early January 2012. NursingCAS generally gets the mail opened and scanned within 2-3 business days of when it was received, but 3-5 days may be the case during peak times.
 
Application Statuses
Statuses describe how far along in the process of applying to NursingCAS a particular applicant has moved. Statuses include:
  • In Progress – Applicants that have designated your school, but not submitted their application.  Admissions Users are able to view these applicants in WebAdMIT, but can see limited information.
  • Received – Applicants that have designated your school and submitted their application, but not all transcript(s) have arrived for these applicants.
  • Completed – Applicants that have designated your school and submitted their application. Transcripts have arrived for these applicants, but they have not yet been verified.
  • Verified – Applicants have designated your school and submitted their application. Transcripts have arrived, and these applicants have been reviewed, and the course work information they have entered has been reviewed by NursingCAS and verified based on what was listed on their official transcript(s).
  • On Hold – Applicants that have been placed on hold by the NursingCAS staff typically have a special circumstance or case that have caused them to require additional review.
  • Undelivered – Any applicant that has had their application returned by NursingCAS due to errors on their application, specifically in the course work entry or school information section.
How Can Applicants Check Their Status?
When applicants are logged into their application on the main page, “My Application” there is a menu item titled “Quick Status”. Underneath “Quick Status” applicants can click on:
  • Designations – In this area applicants can see which designations (or in other words programs) they have selected
  • GPA Calculations – In this area applicants can view the GPAs NursingCAS has calculated based on the course work data. IMPORTANT NOTE: Once an applicant has their GPA Calculations complete, they are verified. What is Verification? Read an explanation here.
  • Transcripts – Applicants can track which transcript(s) from which school(s) have been received and the date.
  • References – Applicants can track which references were submitted on their behalf and what date they were submitted.
  • Payments – Applicants can check to see if their payment(s) have been processed.
It is important to note that applicants do not see any of the information that you see or put in your WebAdMIT portal, including application statuses and local statuses. If you want to communicate with applicants on where they are in your school’s application process, then you should contact them directly through WebAdMIT or your own personal email. WebAdMIT can help you set up email templates and show you how to send them to applicants in order to inform them of where they are in your application process.
 
Review your NursingCAS Listing
Attention: If you need to deactivate a listing, change a deadline, add a program, or make any changes, please notify NursingCAS immediately. To review your listing, you need to create a test application. To create a test account, visit https://portal.nursingcas.org, click on “Create Account”, in the “First Name” field put your name followed by the word test, for example “CarolineTEST”. This is important so we can separate out test applicants from actual applicants.
 
If your school has both undergraduate and graduate programs listed, please create two separate test accounts, one for undergraduate and one for graduate. To create an undergraduate test account, choose "Yes" to the question, "Are you currently a high school student". To create a graduate test account, choose "No" to the question, "Are you currently a high school student". In order to create both an undergraduate and graduate test account, you must use two different email addresses. 
 
Once you are logged into your test account you will be directed to your application homepage. Then click on the last option “Designations” and “Add” then scroll down or search for your program and check to ensure the program and/or track names and the deadline(s) listed are accurate. For instructions with screenshots on how to review your listing, review slides 6 – 10 on this PowerPoint presentation.
 
Attend an Open House, Forum, & Facilities Tour at NursingCAS Headquarters in Boston, MA
Would you like to take a tour of NursingCAS headquarters and see first-hand how documents are processed and transcripts are verified? Attendees will have an opportunity to meet and ask questions of the NursingCAS and WebAdMIT customer service and technical team, and meet other NursingCAS users.
June 12, 9:00 am – 12:00 pm – Register Now
 
Welcome & Introduction
NursingCAS & WebAdMIT Admissions Forum - Learn from Experienced NursingCAS & WebAdMIT Users on the following topics:
 
Getting internal stakeholders on-board with NursingCAS
  • How to educate and engage faculty members
  • How to educate and engage your registrar
  • How to educate and engage admissions personnel
Educating students on the NursingCAS application process
  • How to incorporate NursingCAS into information sessions with prospective students
  • How to educate students on the importance and purpose of course work entry
  • Best practices for developing and sharing school-specific NursingCAS instructions and information on your Web site and in print publications
Ways WebAdMIT can help you and your colleagues
  • How to best utilize WebAdMIT at your school
  • Using WebAdMIT to communicate with and recruit your applicants
  • Ways to leverage the data and reporting capabilities in WebAdMIT
  • How to engage with IT staff in importing the data into your school’s internal ERP or student information system
 
Tour the NursingCAS facilities and receive a first-hand look at processing and verification. Attendees will meet with the Customer Service Manager, Customer Service Team, and the Social Media Coordinator and get a chance to ask questions. Hotel accommodations are available at a negotiated rate of $215/night at the Boston Park Plaza Hotel in beautiful and historic downtown Boston. Shuttle service will be provided to and from the Park Plaza Hotel and Liaison International. Those interested in attending this event are encouraged to make reservations early by completing this online registration form. Booking information and additional details will be provided to those who register. Only a limited number of spaces are available. Please contact Caroline Allen, NursingCAS Manager, at 202-463-6930 x258 or callen@aacn.nche.edu with any questions.
 
Help NursingCAS Grow
The more schools who join NursingCAS, the better it is for applicants, your school, and the profession. Are there upcoming meetings or events that you would like NursingCAS to present at in order to reach out to your peer institutions and colleagues? Would you like to host a NursingCAS site visit and a regional presentation on your campus? Would you like to share your story with prospective NursingCAS users? Then please contact Caroline so she can work with you.
 
P.S.  NursingCAS wants to know how you’re doing. If you would like to share any ideas, issues, or feedback, please email or call AACN’s NursingCAS Manager Caroline Allen, and she will set up a call to discuss these items or respond to you in order to address them. You’re continued feedback is invaluable to helping us improve the application service for you and your applicants. We appreciate your participation in NursingCAS. Caroline can be reached at 202-463-6930 x258 or callen@aacn.nche.edu.
 
 
NursingCAS
202-463-6930 x258
 
Visit the NursingCAS Resource Center:  http://www.aacn.nche.edu/nursingcas/resources
Watch the NursingCAS Video Overview: http://tinyurl.com/nursingcasvideo
Visit NursingCAS: http://www.nursingcas.org
 
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