CHSR – A Web Based MIS to manage all academics

September 30, 2020
Fatema Zohra

Bangladesh University of Professionals (BUP) is one of the most renowned public universities in Bangladesh. They facilitate professional degrees and run undergraduate, graduate, and postgraduate programs through CHSR.

In March 2019, Bangladesh University of Professionals approached several shortlisted software companies in order to develop their Centre for Higher Studies and Research (CHSR) platform. They invited the shortlisted entities to a pre-bid meeting to discuss and clarify the details about their cause, ideas, requirements, and preferences. Nascenia achieved the project through a competitive bidding process.

The Issue Centre for Higher Studies and Research of BUP facing

Apart from the undergraduate program, BUP also offers Ph.D. and MPhil programs under the Center for Higher Studies program. Since 2011, about 500 researchers have enrolled in the system. Most of the students in these higher education programs are working full time in their organizations. So, it’s a bit difficult for them to dedicate their time for the program because of the many priorities they have. As a result, only 16 could avail the degree till 2018. That’s a dismal 3% success rate. BUP recognized it as an issue and believed that this rate could be improved if they could regularly get in touch with the students regarding their upcoming deadlines of seminars, project paper submission, and so on. Nascenia sat with them and understood that the whole process from the admission to awarding degree was a manual process. The next step for us was to sit with the different stakeholders and understand how they are running the system. Based on it, we made a list of features for automating the process.

CHSR - A web based MIS

What features did Nascenia implement?

When Nascenia rolled out the application within 5 months, it went on to resolve the following key requirements for this MIS:

  • Digitize enrollment. 
  • Find out Seminar dues, Payment dues of researchers.
  • Track the progress of Researchers. Since all processes and progress were tracked on paper, it was difficult for the CHSR department to keep track of all the Researchers, and follow up with them. 
  • Search Research, Researchers, and Supervisors by nearby specialization areas.

What challenges did Nascenia face?

The overall CHSR project was a really challenging one for several reasons. Some technical challenges that we have faced are given below.

  • The main challenge was to extract the business requirements from the provided documents and sample pdfs. 
  • Initially provided documents were not the latest, which were detected after development completion. 
  • During the development period, stakeholders of the applications were changed and the new team was not properly aware of the application requirements. 
  • The new team had new change requests based on their understanding.
  • Collaborating with the support team from BUP was challenging such as they were not responsive often. 
  • Some features lacked proper documents like Session Management and initially based on assumptions. 
  • Initially, there was no plan for an SSL certificate, so implementation of the SSL certificate was technically challenging. 
  • On client-server, multiple supported libraries were missing in the IIS server, hampering product installation.

How did Nascenia solve the challenges?

  • Designing a UX that is user-friendly, and understandable for users (section officers) who are not familiar with a digital platform.
  • We had to go through all documents and define ourselves the use case and business flow of the application. 
  • Implementing multiple stages of progress for each Researcher.
    • Scheduling, enrolling, and adding the result to a course/seminar.
    • Seminar module – Calendar view, scheduling, panel member assigning, uploading attachments, and adding the “Comments” feature.
  • We communicated through email/WhatsApp and documented all processes for transparency.
  • Conduct extensive internal discussion, planning, and sometimes rework to reach the optimal solution for the client.
  • Put additional effort to investigate, identify, and resolve all missing packages on the client’s server for a successful setup.
  • Implement additional features and change requests by new stakeholders.
  • Conduct multiple training sessions to bring new stakeholders on-board.
    • Prepare thorough User manual documents as well as a walkthrough video.

The following diagram might help you understand the workflow:

CHSR work flow diagram

CHSR Work Flow Diagram

Work Flow Diagram - CHSR

The technology used and Contribution of Nascenia

We developed this application from scratch in .net technology. We were responsible for wireframing, designing, integrating designs, optimizing databases, and deploying the application to the cloud. It is hosted on the BUP premise they have started using it.

Will more students get awarded for Ph.D. or MPhil in upcoming days because of the innovation Nascenia made?

We will have to wait further to know about it. Keep an eye on our website, we will provide you with an update. 

Do you have any problem in your hand which can be solved with technology? Get in touch with us, we will be glad to help. 

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