Beacon offers campuses the ability to update the system with information via an FTP folder file drop process. This process can be used to construct a regular data update to Beacon without the requirement of a user to log in and upload a file via the Beacon user interface.  

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The FTP folder method is available for the following actions:

Create or Update Users

Campuses can create new users in Beacon by providing basic account information in a .csv file and placing the file, along with a manifest file, into an SFTP directory (see Requirements section below for further information).  

Details on how to populate and import this file can be found here

Add Profile Photos to User Accounts

If your institution captures student, faculty, or staff identification photos you may wish to see these displayed on accounts within Beacon. Users have the ability to upload a photo as well. The bulk photo upload allows you to provide a compressed file containing institution photos and a mapping file that assigns those photos to specific users.

Institution-uploaded photos are stored separately from photos uploaded by users. Though importing institution-uploaded photos will not delete user-uploaded photos, Beacon will only show the institution-uploaded photo if it is available.


  • Contact to request the /Accounts/Photo upload directory be enabled for your institution
  • Individual photo dimensions must be at least 300 x 300 pixels
  • Photo file types must be .jpg (or .jpeg) or .png (text case of file names/extensions does not matter)
  • Maximum file size per photo is 500 kilobytes (500kb)
  • Compressed file must have the extension .ZIP (or .zip)
  • Mapping file must be named "mapping.csv" (the name is case sensitive)
  • Mapping file must be placed INSIDE the compressed file along with the photos
  • Compressed file cannot contain sub-folders (i.e. the photos and mapping file must be in the "root" of the .ZIP file)

The compressed file, along with a manifest file (see the article titled "SFTP Data Exchange Instructions"), should be placed in the directory:


Details on how to populate and import this file can be found here

Connect/Disconnect Advisors to Students

Beacon can associate Faculty/Staff members to students to generate a Success Network.  These connections allow Faculty/Staff to review information about a student and create notations about their interactions with the student.  Sometimes, campuses wish to update these connections on a regular or rolling basis based on new information.  

Performing this action will assign users in the "AdvisorExternalID" column who currently have a Student role to a role of Advisor. 

When importing a Bulk Connections file a user in the AdvisorExternalID" column with a role of Peer Advisor or higher will keep their current role in the system but will be added to the students Success Network.  This import will not lower a users role in the system.

Using the FTP folder method allows a campus to update connection associations daily. To accomplish this task a file containing the headers and data below, along with a manifest file, can be placed in the following directory:


Details on how to populate and import this file can be found here

A summary of the imported file and any errors are available to download from the the Manage Success Network Members section of Beacon:



For more information about how to send files via sFTP correctly please review our Beacon Import Automation documentation.

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