Tech Talk Recap: Tracking Students and Tutors with Sign-in Stations

27 January 2022

TECH TALK SESSION

Sign-in stations, also known as kiosks, are one of the most recognizable and widely-used features of Accudemia. Being able to track students using a sign-in station is one of the main reasons our clients came to us in the first place! But there’s a lot to them that even long-time users might not be aware of, and multiple ways you can use them to manage your center’s traffic. Senior Support Specialist Nick Armstrong covered the ins and outs of sign-in stations in this week’s Tech Talk.

Traditional Sign-in Stations
This is what most students will use when they arrive for in-person services. For many schools, management of their traffic ends when they set up the sign-in station or kiosk in their centers, but did you know that you can customize the look and experience?

To customize the appearance, go to Administration > Control Panel > Appearance and Themes. There you’ll see the option to change the message students see at the sign-in station. This is a good place to inform students of any major policies or procedures you want them to be aware of or any instructions you want them to follow before or after signing in. You can also add a logo for your center or institution.

For the settings, head back to your control panel and look at both the “General” and “Walk-ins” settings. On both pages, you’ll find lots of ways to customize the sign-in experience for your students, such as the selection path they take to sign into the center, how to show available tutors, whether to hide their user ID, and many more options.

Once your sign-in station is designed and configured the way you want it, remember to assign it or install it on a computer so students can use it. There are two ways to do this in Accudemia. You can go to Quick > New Sign-in Station or go to Administration > Sign-in Station > Computers. Both paths will allow you to install a sign-in station at the computer you’re using. To uninstall, simply delete the website's cookies or log into the system from the back end, go back to the Quick > New Sign-in Station, and uninstall the station on that device.

iAccu
iAccu is an IOS app that allows you to turn an Apple device into a sign-in station. We didn’t get into it too much this week since that could be a whole other topic on its own, but it’s important to note that iAccu is available as an add-on license and that each license can be used on one device at a time. iAccu is mostly utilized to track large groups of students, but it can also replace a traditional sign-in station, particularly in a situation where a traditional desktop computer is not a viable option.

Virtual drop-in session linkVirtual Drop-ins
Many centers have either returned to virtual services or are still offering some or all of their services virtually. Many center managers believe that for virtual meetings to be successful, they must be appointment-based, but that’s not true! Virtual walk-ins are easy to manage if you have Accudemia.

To set up your options for a virtual kiosk that takes walk-ins, go to Center Attendance > Virtual Sign-ins > Manage Links. Here, you’ll be able to set your virtual kiosk’s sign-in instructions, the selection path that students will take, connection instructions, and the link students will click on after signing in. 

Next, set the drop-in schedule under Center Attendance > Virtual Sign-ins > Drop-in Times. This ensures that students will only be able to sign in virtually when services are available. Here you’ll be able to list the days of the week and times that your center offers virtual services.

If there are ever any exceptions to those times, for example, additional hours for finals week, or times when you are closed for training, go to “Drop-in Exceptions” in the virtual sign-ins submenu and set those times up. Notice that the “Drop-in Exceptions” rules take precedence over the “Drop-in Times” rules, so if Monday from 9 AM to 5 PM is usually available, but you block off a particular Monday for a holiday, that time will not be available on that day.

Finally, share that virtual kiosk link to your sessions with students! You can share it through email, the Accudemia homepage, your center’s website, or any other means you’d like.

Virtual Appointments
If you want to shift some or all of your appointments to a virtual setting, those can be easily tracked with virtual sign-in stations as well.

When setting up your services for your center’s tracking, make sure that any services that are available virtually are set as such. Additionally, when configuring your email templates for appointment confirmations, make sure they include the join link so that students know what to click on when it’s time for their appointment.

Tutor Sign-ins
There are several options for tracking tutor sign-ins as well, either online or in-person. While working remotely, tutors can sign-in through the personal menu options. And when working in the center they can go up and use the physical kiosk. While we did not focus too much on this process, you can also have them select Tutor Tasks while signing into the center to capture hours working on special projects versus regular work hours.

Sign-in stations are the easiest way to track students who use your services and tutors’ work hours. There are many ways to set up your sign-in stations, whether students or tutors are accessing your services virtually or in-person! Let us know if you have any questions, and we hope to see you at the next Tech Talk!

Join us next time!
Engineerica Systems is pleased to present our Tech Tip segment recap for 1/25/2022 for the weekly Accudemia sessions. Held every Tuesday at 1 pm EST, Accudemia clients can join a session to learn about a quick, useful topic from one of our Support Specialists. Each week, we’ll follow up Tech Tip Tuesday with a blog recapping that week’s topic. If you’re an Accudemia client and would like to join us for the next session, just visit
https://www.engineerica.com/accudemia-weekly-sessions/.