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.
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).
From time-to-time it is important to update or refresh data about a user that can be used by staff to filter or understand the user better.
A common example of this may be to update the Cumulative GPA and Cumulative Credit Hours of a student each semester after grades are calculated. To accomplish this task a file with the following headers, along with a manifest file, may be placed in the directory.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org 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:
The mapping file must contain the following headers with corresponding data:
FileName - the name of the photo file included in the .ZIP file that should be added to the profile of the corresponding ExternalID.
ExternalID - the ID that Campus Labs will use to tie information together with the user. The ID must match the format that is sent via authentication. Campus Labs staff can advise on the format of this ID.
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:
AdvisorExternalID - the external ID of the advisor
StudentExternalID - the external ID of the student
Action - "Connect" or "Disconnect"
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.