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FileMaker Puts in a Star Performance at The Academy of Contemporary Music

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ACM first introduced FileMaker two years ago in its education administration department to help handle the calculation of academic awards. Its potential to enhance all areas of ACM’s operations was very quickly recognised. Subsequently, a programme rolling FileMaker systems out to other areas of the institution was undertaken.

Today, the system begins at first contact with a prospective student when a record is created in the admissions team’s FileMaker database. As the prospect moves through the application process their progress is continuously tracked using FileMaker. The system links with UCAS (the UK’s University and Colleges Admission Service) and speaks directly to their database, meaning that updates to applications are made automatically for ACM.

Once term begins, ACM’s SMART system takes over. Again based on FileMaker, SMART represents a resource for every element of a student’s time at ACM. This goes from tracking attendance and assessment results, to providing a single access point for course materials and assignments.

For the student, all of this is accessible through ACM’s WordPress-based student portal, available through their own computers and mobile devices, and at terminals around campus. The system also includes email and text alerts to keep students updated on events and deadlines.

Even for teaching staff, SMART automates previously time consuming tasks, allowing them to concentrate on the students themselves. Every member of the teaching faculty has been issued with an iPad that runs FileMaker Go. They use the app to register attendance, log tutorials and provide feedback to students about their assessments.

Through FileMaker, course scheduling is automated, meaning rooms are automatically booked and clashes resolved. Based on teaching schedules, 3M, another FileMaker database at ACM, automatically generates tutor payroll for the finance department, meaning that tutors can be paid for their work more quickly than ever before.

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