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Student Success Units

Inspire is a highly configurable system comprising of different permission settings, roles, configurations, and functionality - so how do we make it work for each institution? 

A Student Success Unit (SSU) is a department, office, division, college, or campus that provides student support and contributes to your holistic advising structure. SSUs help segregate data, hide and show different features, and create separate sharing patterns (advising notes, in particular). 

Examples of SSUs include, but are not limited to, Academic Advising, Athletics, Student Affairs, Disability Services, Financial Aid, Tutoring, Off-campus study, and Career Services. 

Use Cases

There are three main use cases for having different SSUs: advising note sharing, data segregation, and serving different student populations.

  1. Advising note visibility/sharing: If the institution has two offices that should not see each other’s shared notes, they need to be two separate SSUs. 

  2. Student data visibility: Data exists on the student profile, advanced search, and in reporting. If the institution has two offices, one of which should not see specific data elements (Financial Aid Data), they need two separate SSUs. 

  3. Student population: If an office should only see a subset of students at the institution (Athletics, Honors, Fellowships) they need to be a separate SSU, or, if an office at the university is only conducting outreach to a subpopulation of students at the institution (Career Services) they may opt for a separate SSU for reporting purposes (events and note reporting).


Consider the following example: 

The image below outlines three different SSUs configured for one institution and includes the primary users roles available within each SSU.

The table below describes the configuration decisions made for each SSU within this example. 

Student Success UnitAdvising Note Visibility/SharingStudent Data VisibilityStudent Population

Academics SSU

Notes should be visible to all Academic and Counseling advisors.

All data

All students

Athletics SSU

Notes should be visible by athletics advisors only; but shared with academic advisors as needed.

All data

All Athletes

Counseling SSU

Sensitive notes should be kept within the SSU.

All data

Needs to have access to all students and be available to all students

Each SSU has different primary users, rules around advising note visibility/sharing, can view specific student data, and have access to different student populations. 

Academics SSU 

In the Academics SSU, primary users include academic advisors, major advisors, and first-year advisors. Advising notes that are created in this SSU are visible by all other advisors in the Academics SSU, as well as, Counseling Advisors in the Counseling SSU.  All students appear in this SSU and advisors have access to all student information. 

Athletics SSU

In the Athletics SSU, primary users include athletic advisors and coaches. Advising notes that are created in this SSU are only visible to other users in the Athletics SSU, but can be shared with users in the Academics SSU on a case-by-case basis. Only student-athletes appear in this SSU and these advisors have access to all student information. 

Counseling SSU

In the Counseling SSU, primary users are counseling advisors. Advising notes that are created in this SSU are always private and cannot be viewed by members of other SSUs. All students appear in this SSU and Counseling advisors have access to all student information. 

Note: Users can exist in multiple SSUs. SSUs are determined during configuration with your Project Manager and Training and Enablement Consultant, and users are added to SSUs automatically based on a data feed.


Questions to Guide Decision Making around SSUs

  1. Is the work of the team centralized?

  2. How do you share information about a student and/or your interactions with the student?

  3. Do you serve and have access to to all students’ records at the institution?  Or a subpopulation?

  4. Do you need and/or have access to sensitive student data that other offices do not?

  5. What are your reporting needs?

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