In previous posts we have outlined the work done developing BSU’s data warehouse. IRDS has been working with partners across the institution to ensure that this data can be accessed and utilized to support important decisions. Toward that goal we have developed a series of dashboards that surface information in new and innovative ways. As of now there are two classes of dashboards — those that are in production and those that are in development. In this post we describe these dashboards in more detail.

In Production (currently available)


Retention and Enrollment as-of-day

One of the first and most technically sophisticated dashboards we created were the “as-of-day” visualizations for enrollment and retention. These dashboards are intended to provide a visual representation of enrollment and retention for multiple years for each day in the lead up to the start of the Spring and Fall terms. With these charts it is easy to see where we are each day in comparison to 5 prior years. Having this updated every day gives an impactful understanding of our performance both in enrolling new students as well as retaining existing students. The data can be disaggregated along several dimensions including college, major, department, race/ethnicity, gender and entry type.

Included within the as-of-day suite is a “what if” analysis tool where users can select a given retention rate and see how many more students they need to retain in order to achieve that objective.


College Transition

This recently developed Sankey visualization was created in response to requests from Deans to better understand the transition of students through BSU. Students who begin at BSU in a specific college and major will often move to other colleges within BSU. Sometimes they return to their original college and sometimes students stop out or transfer to other institutions. With the College Transition Sankey charts we can now see all these transitions in a striking visual format. We will be working with our Deans to help use this data to better support students as they complete their journey to graduation.


Annual Data Packet

In order to support annual unit reviews and other accreditation-related activities we have developed a collection in Tableau that makes it easy to print out a formatted set of dashboards in one convenient PDF. We look forward to creating more collections like this (for example, Graduate Program Success for the Graduate School) to address specific needs where reports need to be printed or saved. While dashboards are great they do not meet every need and at times a set of reports need to be fixed in time and printed in a non-volatile format for use in various reports.


Grade and DWF Rates and Distribution

We have made available to select users the ability to see grade distributions and the DFW rates by college, department, instructor and course. This data is used to help colleges understand student progression and places where students may need additional assistance.


Advisor Caseloads

This visualization was built for our colleagues in University College. It is used to help understand advisor workload, the balance of the workload and to look for any exceptions in the data.


In Progress (still in development)

Multiple Majors

One of the common asks from Deans and Chairs is to have greater clarity into the students that they serve who are declared in more than one major. Due to the nature of this kind of reporting there is some risk of “double counting” students and that’s something we’d like to avoid. However, this information is important for planning and understanding workload and we are currently doing development work in conjunction with input from campus constituencies to produce data that is clear and helps support decisions. We will always have our core dashboards for unduplicated counts of students by college but these additional dashboards will provide context for how many students are in more than one major and what departments they are in.



A topic of interest at BSU is in the area of student holds. Holds are used for a variety of reasons including to block registration when a student’s minimum payment requirement is not met. As we develop these dashboards we are looking for ways to better understand the number and timing of holds that are being set. We also want to create a holistic view that includes things like whether a student with a financial hold has unaccepted aid they could use to clear that hold. Ultimately we want to make sure that our holds policies and procedures best suit the needs of our students.


Navigate Progress Reports

One of the new data sources that we have brought into the DWH, using an EAB API, is information on progress reports from the EAB Navigate platform. This platform is used extensively at BSU to help students progress through their academic programs. University College needed to see a real time view of how certain progress report data is shaping up by college and department. This data was not readily available in the EAB reporting tools so we created this extract and reporting for them to better understand daily response rates by campaign.