Phone: (269) 471-6016
Fax: (269) 471-6900
ITS
Information Systems Building,
Andrews University
Berrien Springs, MI
49104-0880
 

Banner Frequently Asked Questions

General Questions

1.      What are the benefits of using Banner?  What information is in Banner?

The term “Banner” is used loosely on this campus to mean any university administrative information and any means of accessing it.

More precisely, Banner is a very large software package that AU contracts from a company called SunGard Higher Education. Banner is the leading software for educational institutions in the United States and serves many international clients as well. Included in this package are (1) a database design (in the generic database Oracle), (2) forms and web pages to display and enter data, and (3) processes to manipulate data (to calculate our paychecks, for example). Banner has two distinct areas with different access points, layout, and formatting: Self-Service Banner (SSB) and Internet Native Banner (INB). SSB can be accessed through Vault, My Account, Banner Web; INB is available here and you can install a desktop shortcut from there.

In addition, AU has created locally-written ways to store, enter, display, and manipulate data. Some of these (such as iVue) are available on the web, some on an older text-based interface called redwood, and some run as processes within INB. The administrative offices are the primary users of the INB forms and processes purchased from SunGard and of the locally-written INB processes.  Most other departments on campus use the web or redwood to access the information they need.

Banner is organized into five areas (Student, Alumni/Advancement, Finance, Human Resources, and Financial Aid), plus a General area that applies to all. Virtually all of the information needed for the day-to-day operations of the university is stored in the Banner database. The Student area, for example, contains data about prospective students, applicants, registered students, graduated students, dorm and apartment residents, courses taught, etc.

When you check a student’s class schedule on iVue, view your paystub, or record an interdepartmental charge, you are interacting with the Banner database. 

Incidentally, university departments often create their own private databases to track information of interest to them. This information is not available to the rest of the campus and cannot be included in ITS-written reports and analyses. Private databases often duplicate information available in the Banner database and are difficult to keep synchronized with it. They may contain obsolete information, or, conversely, they may be updated with current information that is not also updated in the central database (address changes, for example). While ITS does not prevent departments from maintaining private databases, we do recommend contacting ITS Administrative Systems (Brad Christensen, Sue Schwab, or Jennifer Janssen) to determine if there is a way to track this information centrally. Please also keep in mind that all personnel data must be kept updated in Banner. 

2.      How do we get permission to access a particular Banner [INB] form or process?  Or who can we ask if we have a question?

For initial authorization, complete the Administrative Computing Request Form available on the AU website (under Faculty/Staff, Technology Support, Information Technology Services).

Contacts for additional access or questions regarding:

 

ITS Contacts
Academic, Financial Aid and Accounts Receivable Carmen Pagán (ext 3129; paganc@andrews.edu)
Finance/HR/Alumni Jennifer Janssen (ext 6132; jjanssen@andrews.edu)
Any area Marvin Budd (ext 6104; mbudd@andrews.edu)

 

Note:  Adding forms may require authorization from the data custodian designated for that area, if not already obtained:

  • Alumni – Audrey Castelbuono
  • Finance – Sharyl Turon or Esther Lonto
  • HR – Beverly Brown
  • Student – Emilio Garcia-Marenko or Aimee Vitangcol-Regoso
  • Student Accounts and Aid – Elynda Bedney

3.      What are some of the function keys in Banner [INB]?

See the keymap for keyboard function keys (or click Help, Show Keys). Mouse commands are also available at the top of the window (using words or buttons).

Other navigation hints:

Dates may be entered in MMDDYY format; tabbing out of the date field will convert the date to the standard Banner format (DD-MON-YYYY).

Alternately, you can enter only part of the day, and Banner will assume the rest is current. I.e. if you enter 17, and tab out, Banner will assume you mean 17-NOV-xxxx (xxxx is the current year). If you enter 0701, and tab out, Banner will assume you mean 01-JUL-xxxx.

Alternately if you want today’s date, whatever today might be, you can just enter a t and tab out. Banner will assume that you want whatever date it is that day. 

You may create a personal menu (My Banner) that lists the forms you use most frequently.

All Banner forms and processes have a seven-character name. The first character indicates the major system to which that form/process belongs, the second the subsystem, the third the type of form/process, and the last four the specific purpose of the form/process. GOAEMAL, for example, is in the General system, the Overall subsystem, is an Application form (for viewing or entering data), and contains email addresses. If you see a report or process that has a W as the second letter, than means it’s one that we wrote ourselves.

4.      How do you backspace in redwood? What are some other function keys?

Control-backspace or shift-backspace should work.

Better: Change your PuTTY settings so the “plain” backspace key works. Click the computers icon in the upper left, select Change Settings, Keyboard (under Terminal), select Control-H under “The Backspace key”. Click Apply to apply the changed settings to your current session. Then save the changed setting for future sessions: in the Category pane, click Session, select redwood, click Save.

To cancel a report on redwood: Control-C, then type “exit” (just the word, no quotes), then press <Enter> to return to the menu.

Other commands are listed on the redwood window: N/P for Next/Previous page of long option lists, 0 to Exit the current menu.

Specific Questions-Finance and Human Resources

5.      How do we enter IDCs?

Go to Vault, Finance, IDC. The first option on the menu is Enter IDC. There are several other options to view IDCs that affect those FOAPAL elements you have permission to handle. 

There is a FAQ on the menu that is extremely helpful.

Permissions can be granted by your supervisor, and you can grant permissions to others for the FOAPAL elements you oversee. Use the add/remove users option on the menu. If for some reason this is not possible, you can send an email to Esther Lonto (elonto@andrews.edu).

6.      How can we get an email alert on IDC’s charged to our department?

This is not possible currently. It may come at some time in the future as Finance overhauls its Financial Managers system. You will receive an email if someone contests an IDC that you have submitted.

7.      How can we get year-to-date figures for specific accounts or groups of accounts (after month closes, before month closes; revenue/expense and fund balance accounts)?

After month closes—use Fund Balance Reports (for restricted funds, not fund 11) and Organizational Statements. These are found in Vault, Finance, Financial Statements. These include revenue/expenses with budget information, as well as detail information depending on the report selected. *Note—If a report does not open in a new window, please click on the pdf  icon/text link that says “Click here if your pdf document didn’t open”.

Before month closes—use Banner Web (SSB) Budget Queries. Go to Vault, My Account, Banner Web, Financial Information Menu. You can save a query to use on return visits. There are several options and you can play around to arrive at the best query for you, then save it. This area also allows you to drill down to see details behind the numbers. 

8.      How can we find out what invoices have been processed after we sign them? How can we get lists of check requests disbursed?

The best way to see particular document information is to drill down through a budget query, accessed as described above. Pick one of the accounts that you charged the invoice, check request, or expense report; then run a budget query. If the invoice appears on the list, then it has been approved. If it is not on the list, then it has not yet been processed. You can drill down even further to verify if a check has been cut and what the check number is. 

If you know the document number (the unique number that Banner has assigned to the invoice), you can use the View Document option (available on the same menu as Budget Query). Before the end of the month, you can find out a document number through drilling down through a budget query; after the end of the month, the document number appears as the Doc. Code on the detail portion of Fund Balance Reports and Organizational Statements.

9.      How can we get lists of hourly rates for student employees?

This is on the docket, in some form, in the time-keeping system. The Payroll Office will keep the time-keepers informed of changes in that system.

In the meantime, and perpetually, this information is also available via the Payroll Expense Reports. These can be accessed at Vault, HR Reports. These are by pay-period, and are divided up into employee type (e.g. Salaried, Hourly, Student Hourly, etc.).

10.  How can we get phone and email lists of faculty and staff?

An INB process, PWPLABL, is available that will produce an Excel file with name, work address, work phone, and (eventually) campus email address for all employees. If you have both NIDA and INB access, and are unable to access this report in INB, please email Jennifer Janssen (jjanssen@andrews.edu) to receive access. If you do not have INB access, you must complete an Administrative Computing Request Form.

Email addresses will be added after the Administrative Computing Committee has created a policy to deal with abuse of mass email lists.

Specific Questions-Student and Accounts Receivable

11.  How does iVue’s proxy system work?

Advisors can see their advisees, teachers can see their course rosters, department chairs can see courses and majors (students) in their department, school deans can see courses and majors (students) in their school. Any of these can designate others as their proxies, who then inherit some or all of the grantor’s privileges, as specified by the grantor. 

12.   Is it possible to always cc yourself when sending emails from preVue?

You can type your email address into the CC field; there is currently no automatic CC to the sender. You can email Brad Christensen (bradc@andrews.edu) to request that this feature be added.

13.  Is it possible to change the signature for preVue emails?

You can type changes into the signature field. The changes will not be saved for automatic use on future emails. You can email Brad Christensen (bradc@andrews.edu) to request that a saved signature be added as a feature.

14.  What are the most-commonly-used Banner forms for finding student information?

  • Contact info – SPAIDEN (or NIDA, or preVue/iVue)
  • Grades – SHATERM, SHASUBJ, SHACRSE (or iVue)
  • Current classes – SFAREGQ (but iVue is better)
  • Admissions status – SAAADMS, SAADCRV (but preVue is better)
  • Current major – SGASTDN (but iVue is better)
  • Account activity and balance – TSAAREV (but web statement lookup is better)

15.  How can I get:

  • Lists of majors, sorted by class, GPA, SAT, ACT, etc.?
  • Lists of minors, sorted by class, GPA, SAT, ACT, etc.?
  • Lists of honors students majoring/minoring in a department?
  • Phone and email lists of majors/minors?

    Redwood: Banner Reports, Registered Students, #29 “Mail Excel file of registered students”.

    General comments regarding redwood: 

    Redwood report numbers given are from the “chair” menu that most academic departments have. Your menu may be different, but the item description should be the same or very similar. Don’t rely too heavily on item numbering to find reports; it can change if a new report is inserted above. If you can’t find a comparable item to the one mentioned in training, call Sue Schwab at 3129 for help.

    Newer redwood reports create an Excel file directly (and will say so on the menu). Older redwood reports create a text file. They may simply print that file, or they may email it, or they may offer you a choice. Emailed text files can be saved to your hard drive, then imported into Excel (Data, Import External Data; Import Data, then follow the wizard). If you would like a report that is currently print-only to be emailed, call Sue Schwab (3129); that’s a simple change.

    Please note that when querying minors, you must request each separately. Note that no validation is performed on minor/department combinations when they are entered. It is still safest to use the minor code instead of minor department. 

  • Lists of graduating seniors or applied-to-graduate?

    Redwood: Banner Reports, Graduated Student Reports, #6 “Mail Excel file of graduating/graduated students”. For candidates, select graduation status APP (or C, ceremony, to include marching-only) and degree status %. For graduates, select graduation status % and degree status AW.

  • Lists of classes by individual faculty for a semester?

    Redwood: Banner Reports, Administrative Reports, #18 “Print dean’s report (sections taught by dept and instructor)”, or #19 “Create/mail deans stats file for a term range”. Item 18 prints two sections, one sorted by course, one sorted by instructor. Item 19 sends one set of data that can be imported into Excel and sorted as needed.

  • Faculty committee assignments and time commitments?

    These are not recorded in the Banner database, although they may be at a future time. Please contact the Provost’s office.

  • Faculty publication records?
  • Faculty award records?

    These are not recorded in the Banner database. Please contact Scholarly Research. 

  • Student named scholarships and excellence awards?

    Contact Cindy Gammon (Student Financial Services) or Sue Schwab (ITS) for lists of students who have received a particular scholarship.  Excellence awards not related to scholarships are not recorded in the Banner database. Please contact Student Life.

16.  How can I see class lists for other schools?

Typically that is not allowed. You may contact Brad Christensen (6102) if you feel that your job duties require access to other schools’ class rosters. 

For the School of Education: Anyone proxied appropriately by the School of Education Dean can see iVue data for students with Elementary Certification (ECRT) or Secondary Certification (SCRT) emphases, regardless of the school of their major. Students with these emphases are automatically in the domain of the School of Education.

17.  How can I find the instructor for a course in the past?

  1. Online class schedule (Faculty/Staff, Class Schedule)
  2. iVue class rosters (if appropriately proxied)
  3. Banner INB: SSASECT
  4. Redwood: Banner Reports, Registered Student Reports, #26 “Print class rosters for a term” (allows selecting one CRN)
  5. Redwood: Banner Reports, Administrative Reports, #18 or #19 (dean’s stats)

18.  How can I get course rosters for current and previous semesters?

  1. iVue (if appropriately proxied)
  2. Banner INB: SFASLST
  3. Redwood: Banner Reports, Registered Student Reports, #26 “Print class rosters for a term”

10.   What if I need course rosters for many different professors, from many different departments plus some adjuncts?

The Seminary is an issue because it has a “crosshatch” structure; its departments are by discipline, but most of its programs cross departments. DMin’s, MDiv’s, etc, are coded in “department” General Seminary, which has no chair to grant a proxy. Our best suggestion is to have the dean grant access to you to see all course rosters in the Seminary.

20.  How can I search for specific AR transactions?

Banner: TSAAREV (or TSADETL); Query Enter, Query Execute

21.      Is there a list of INB forms, with descriptions of their functions?

In INB, select My Banner, Organize My Banner.  Form GUAPMNU will open.  The left side lists all Banner forms, with a very brief description.  The list is sorted by the description.  You can search the list by either the seven-character form name or the description (Query Enter, type the characters you want to find, Query Execute; % is the wildcard character).

Easier ways to find a form are to use the INB menus (which organize the forms by area), or to call Sue Schwab or the administrative office for that area and tell them what information you want.  They can probably tell you the form name from memory since they use them all the time.

When you find a form you think you will use regularly, you can add it to your “My Banner” menu to make it easier to find.

If you want very in-depth information, the Banner manuals and handbooks can be found via the Banner 7x Bookshelf link found on the INB page.

22.      Can I view transcripts on the screen in the redwood format without having to print it out?  If not, what are the alternatives?

The advising sheet in redwood is print-only.

The best alternative for online viewing is iVue (from the student profile page, select View University Academic Record from the links to the right of the rainbow).

In INB, a student’s academic history can be viewed on:

  • SHATERM (grouped by term, with term GPA and running cum GPA)
  • SHASUBJ (grouped by course acronym/subject, with subject GPA)
  • SHACRSE (straight course listing, searchable, no GPA)

23.      Who maintains student contact information?

 

Contact Information is Maintained by
Academic Records Current students
Payroll Current employees
Alumni Former students
Development Donors
Accounts Payable Vendors
Accounts Receivable Non-student customers

 

Students and employees may also update their own information on the web and should be encouraged to do so (Vault, My Addresses).

24.      Has the five-year limitation on class roster display been removed, or will I have to request it to be lifted?

The program will be modified to remove the limitation permanently, for everyone. 

25.      What are the steps to send an email to everyone in a class?

You need to be appropriately proxied so you can view that class roster in iVue.

  1. Go to Vault, iVue.
  2. Select “View Class Rosters”.
  3. Enter the search criteria, select “Search Classes”.
  4. Select “View Roster” for the desired class.
  5. Click “Select All”; checkmarks will appear in the checkbox for all students.
  6. Select “Enter Email for Selected Students”.
  7. Write the email as desired.
  8. Select “Send Email”.

26.      What is the difference between NIDA, preVue, and iVue?

NIDA (Name, ID, Address) is simply contact information for any person in the Banner database, regardless of their relationship to AU.

PreVue is detailed information on prospective students (recruits and applicants).  It shows their program(s) of interest, high school and prior college background, test scores, admission requirements, admission decision, recruiters and advisors, enrollment and housing status, and communications with them. 

iVue is detailed information on registered or eligible-to-register students.  It shows their program of record, current class schedule, test scores, and academic history.  With appropriate permissions, you can post an alert for a student if there is reason for concern (academic difficulty, excessive absences, etc.), or view posted alerts.

27.      How can we get grades for all students in a class?

With an appropriate proxy, you could see submitted grades for a class in the grade submission module on vault:  Vault, Registrar, Grade Submission, Submit Grades, View Submitted Grades.  (These are the originally-submitted grades, not necessarily the current grades.)

With appropriate permissions, form SFASLST in Banner INB also shows submitted grades for a class.

Specific Questions-General Navigation

28.      Is there a list of redwood menu items, commands, and instructions?

See question 4 above.

Redwood is a very simple, text-based menu system.  There are very few commands, and most are listed at the bottom of the menu itself:

  • Select menu items by number (type the number, press <Enter>).
  • N is Next Page for long option lists.
  • P is Previous Page for long option lists.
  • 0 is Exit.

To cancel a report once you’ve started to order it, press control-C (cancel), type the word “exit”, press <Enter>.

There are no function key commands in redwood.

The options list on redwood menus is a short description of what each option does.  Simply select the item you want and answer the questions it asks.  If you don’t know how to answer a particular question, you may call Sue Schwab (3129) or the administrative office for that area.

The first question each option asks is “what database do you want to report from?”  It looks like this:

                        ORACLE_SID = [PROD] ?

Press <Enter> there to select the Production (live) database.  (Other databases are for testing purposes and are used by ITS only.)

Commonly used codes include (these are the codes actually used in the Banner database; they are not unique to redwood):

 

Schools
10 College of Arts and Sciences
20 College of Technology
30 School of Architecture
40 School of Education
60 School of Business
70 Theological Seminary 

 

 

Campuses
0 Main
7 Field-Based
9 US Extensions
Z International Extensions

          (call Sue Schwab, Admissions, or Records for others)           

 

 

Levels
DE Developmental (for courses only, not students)
UG Undergraduate
MA Masters
FP Professional (MDiv only)
DO Doctoral

 

Departments, Majors, Emphases/concentrations and Minors: Four-character (max) alphabetic codes, usually intuitive.  English is ENGL, for example; Mathematics is MATH, Biology is BIOL.

Degrees: Six-character (max) alphabetic codes, usually intuitive.  Bachelor of Arts is BA, for example, Master of Divinity is MDIV, Doctor of Philosophy is PHD.

29.      In a form the Help | Extract Data items don't work.

In File | Preferences | Directory Options the Data extract format should be TEXT. The output will appear in the browser and then you can File Save As to a .csv file.

The downloaded file will go in the first item under Directory Options which defaults to c:\. (See http://support.microsoft.com/kb/815313.)

30.     When I try to display Online Help nothing happens or my Banner session is lost. When I click on a link in Email my Banner session is lost.

Run the "Create Desktop Shortcuts" link to install the shortcut again. This will install required registry settings. This must be done for each user of a machine.

31.     I press ALT-TAB to switch to another window, then ALT-TAB back to Banner. However, my keyboard doesn't work - the screen appears to freeze.

Use the mouse to click in the form area and it works again. This is a known bug with the Oracle software and will be fixed in a future release.

32.     When starting Internet Native Banner I get a message that something signed by Oracle Developer is being installed and asking if I want to let it run.

Click the button to always trust this source and the message will go away.

 
Andrews University is a Seventh-day Adventist institution of higher education
Phone: 1-800-253-2874   E-mail: enroll@andrews.edu
Copyright © 2014 Andrews University
Berrien Springs, Michigan 49104