General Tips for Using Activity Insight (AI):
- Most important, of course, is to record what you are doing throughout the year. It’s too easy to forget what you did in the previous September once May rolls around and your annual report is due. This can be done in AI as the year goes on, or you could store the bits and pieces of information in some other document (e.g., Word). Either way, get in the habit of recording things routinely (e.g., monthly) as the year goes on.
Log in to Activity Insight (opens in new tab). Bookmark this address for future use.
- The main part of the platform that all users will be working with is “manage your activities.” This is where you will be when you log in to the system (you will see that option activated by default in menu on far left). You can see the overall template and clicking on any of the links under the four main sections of “General Information,” “Teaching,” “Scholarship/Research,” and “Service” will take you to another screen at which point you can either choose to “add” new information or work with existing information (if there is any) with buttons for editing, copying, or deleting such information. Adding new or editing/ copying existing information will bring you to the more specific screens containing the fields in which information can be entered.
- There are a variety of ways data are input into AI. Fields of some screens are populated automatically as we send information from our institutional databases to AI. There are also many fields where one can select what to enter from drop-down menus and others where you enter the information in a text field. For this latter type of material, to be sure it does not get lost in case there’s a mistake, we suggest you have it in a Word document from which you can cut-and-paste directly into the fields. Alternatively, AI has a “Pasteboard” (available as a tab in lower-right of screen) that can be used for the same purpose. After you make any entries, you MUST click one of the “save” buttons available at top and bottom of the screens. If you don’t, you will lose that data. If that were to happen, and you had it originally in Word or the ‘pasteboard,’ then you won’t have to recreate it again from scratch.
What Data Do I Enter & Where Do I Enter It?
- Enter relevant data reflecting what you have accomplished in the reporting cycle in question. IMPORTANT: Dates are required in most screens!! In some of these, you’ll set the date from a pull-down menu; in others, you have to enter it manually. Dates, in part, determine what information is “grabbed” for particular Annual Reports.
- There are places in AI where ‘help’ boxes exist to give you some suggestions for material you might include in that particular field. These are indicated by the ‘?’ symbol.
- There may be times when information entered for a previous year hasn’t changed much and, to save some time, it might be helpful to simply copy it for the new year and then make minor edits. AI lets you copy individual screens. Clicking on any of the links in the main menu takes you to a screen where you have the button for ‘add a new item’ plus you see a listing of previous years information entered. For each previous year, you have 3 choices: ‘edit,’ ‘copy,’ and ‘delete.’ Hitting the ‘copy’ icon, say for 2011-12, will bring up all the fields for that particular screen and all your 2011- 12 information is repeated. You’ll then want to reset this to the current year (e.g., 2012-13 when this was written) and ‘save.’ Then you can get back in and edit as desired (making sure you save as you do so of course). You may enter basic pieces of data in the screens for “personal and contact information” and “yearly data.” You should definitely enter your ‘faculty/staff status’ in the latter screen.Specific user groups
Regular faculty– The most important screens are:
- “faculty narratives” under the “General Information” section;
- screens as needed in the “teaching” section (Note:Much of the data for fields in “Scheduled Teaching” [Course and section numbers, title, credit, enrollment, and grades as available] will have been populated);
- screens as needed in “scholarship/research” and “service.”
Adjunct faculty(if you have taught at least 2 courses) – Most important screens are:
- “faculty narratives” under the “General Information” section and “Scheduled Teaching” under “Teaching” section (Note:Much of the data for fields in “Scheduled Teaching” [Course and section numbers, title, credit, enrollment, and grades as available] will have been populated);
- other screens under “Teaching” may be used if relevant (e.g., taught an independent study or had advising responsibilities, etc.);
- while not obligated to report these activities, one can enter data into screens under Scholarship” or “Service” if needed.
Professional staff– Enter data in the “professional narratives” screen under the “General Information” section. Also enter teaching, scholarship, and service information if applicable.
Unit heads– Enter information for your individual annual report using the screens for the group you belong to above. Unit annual reports are entered in the “administrator narratives” screen
How do I run my Annual Report?
The Annual Report is the main report faculty and staff will want to run. The quickest way to produce your individual annual report is to click on “Rapid Reports” tab at lower-right. Select ‘annual report’ and enter the appropriate dates if not currently set by default. (Note: Our college reporting cycle is July 1, – June 30. Select the format for the report and hit “run report.”
Alternatively, you can also generate your annual report by selecting “run custom reports” from menu at left of AI main screen. In resulting screen, choose ‘annual report’ in step 1, then click “select report” button (we know, it’s redundant). In Step 2, the default is the current reporting cycle. If you need another year, then change accordingly. In Steps 3 & 4, select the format and page size for report. Click ‘build report.’
Why don’t I see some of my information in the Annual Report?
- If you didn’t save it, it won’t be there.
- The Annual Report is configured to draw only particular elements from AI. Not all fields in the AI template are used. Essentially, as currently configured, it is meant to reproduce our historical annual report form, although some additional prompts have been added.
- Whether or not it appears in a particular reporting cycle is, as noted above, dependent on dates entered. It’s possible that, for those activities where a date range was entered, if the starting/ending date is outside the annual report timeframe specified, it may not appear.
- If you produce your Annual Report as a Word document, and then you make changes in said document, THOSE CHANGES WILL NOT APPEAR IN THE AI DATABASE. You’ve only changed the report, not the underlying data. So when you go to run the report again, you won’t see the revisions. You have to revise what’s in AI.
Is there anything else I need to do with my Annual Report?
When you have submitted your annual report to your Chair/Supervisor, he/she will enter their comments. To read their comments, select “Chair/Dean comments” from the Main Menu. At that screen, you can read their comments. There is also a field there to indicate that you have read the comments and another to respond if you wish to do so.
Last Updated 5/29/13