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Analyzing Data for Uploads

Before you begin defining the interface for an upload, you need to gather the following information about the file you are uploading and determine its relationship to eSchoolPlus data. For additional information on setting up definitions for uploads, refer to Upload/Download Definition Page and Test Score Import Definition Page.

  • What tables and fields do you need to update?

  • What are the key fields for each table being updated?

    The upload record must include data for all the key fields in eSchoolPlus. If the data is not in the source file, you can use a literal, providing the value is the same for all records. You also can use external matching if you can return the key field based on data that exists in the source file.

  • For each table you need to update, are there fields that do not allow nulls and your source file does not have these values? For example, you cannot load data to the Student Test record unless you specify a value for the Transcript Print field.

  • Do you need to insert values from one line in the data file into more than one record for a table? For example, if the file has three test scores for each student, then you will be loading data from the same line in the data file into three records.

    When using the Upload/Download Definition or Test Score Import Definition option, you need to define a separate header record for each record you are uploading. For example, if the interface is adding student test information plus three scores, you would need one header for the student test (ltdb_stu_test) and separate headers for each score (ltdb_stu_subtest). If you also will be updating student tracking information, you would need a header for that, as well.

  • For each field you need to update, is the format of the value in the data file the same as the format of the value in the database?

    If the field length is longer in the data file and the value is not used to validate other fields, you can truncate the value by specifying a shorter field length in the upload definition.

    If the value is formatted differently, you can define formatting for the detail record for a field to change the format of the field. For example, if the data file stores the date in an MM/DD/YY format, you can define the upload to convert this value to MM/DD/YYYY, the format supported in the eSchoolPlus database.

  • Is the field being updated validated by either another table in eSchoolPlus or a hard-coded list of values? If so, does the value in the data file match a valid value in eSchoolPlus? For example, if you are uploading a mark reporting comment code, does the comment code match the valid codes defined in Mark Reporting?

    If you only want to upload values that match the values in a validation table or in a list of valid values, you can define validation for the interface detail record.

    If you want to translate the values in the data file to valid values, define translation records for the interface detail records.

  • If you are uploading test score data, you should consider the format of the score fields in the subtest definition for the test results to be uploaded. For example, in the subtest definition, a score can be designated as either character or numeric. If the score is numeric, it can hold an integer or decimal.
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