Design And Implementation Of Academic Transcript Management System

Project and Seminar Material for Computer Science and Computer Engineering

Design And Implementation Of Academic Transcript Management System


Abstract


This research paper examined the inadequacies involved in the manual method of generating students’ transcript in Akwa Ibom State Polytechnic. To achieve that, preliminary investigations about the current manual record keeping were carried out at the school. The problems with the manual result processing were identified and a new system was proposed, designed, and implemented. In this work, a computer software application was developed to facilitate the automated processing of the results. The software was developed Java programming language and MYSQL (My Structural Query Language), a relational database management system in designing the database; tested and found to have produced the expected results. Teachers do not need to draw vertical/horizontal lines on a broad sheet of paper for recording students test and exam scores, and also need not to do any form of calculations, as the system does virtually everything. Similarly, there is no need of printing result booklet for each student. Results can be printed on A4 size paper or on embossed cardboard paper cut into A4 size and which appears like a certificate and looks more beautiful at a lower cost compared to the cost of printing result booklets and the stress teachers have to undergo to prepare students results. The software will make the teacher’s job less stressful by cutting down the time and effort spent on result preparation, thereby, allowing the teacher more time for teaching and other instructional issues. This new system is flexible and can be modified to suit any kind of students’ record keeping and data processing in both public and private secondary schools.


Chapter One


Introduction

Transcript can be defined as the statement or record of academic Performance of a student within the period of study in an institution. An academic transcript is used to inform an institution or organization the general performance of the student Eludire, A. (2011).

The manual system of applying for the transcript has not been efficient. Hence there has been enormous cost incurred as well as delay in submitting application for the processing of transcript. Owing to those problems the researcher looked at designed an efficient design and implementation of web-based transcript system.

Compiling of results for quite a number student has been a burden to lecturers and alongside getting a transcript for each student’s result has to be solved by building a platform where registration of courses, result processing and transcript generation could be made easy with one having a desktop. The manual method of checking results for example; Students going to the notice board to check results. With student’s mentality, they calculate to make sure what they were given was actually what they deserved. Most times some students get undeserved marks, while others get unfairly marked down, this causes delay of results for corrections, which might be unfavorable to students especially the final year students. All this happens because a lecturer was tired and calculated wrongly.

Transcripts would be needed to have meaningful information about the result without stressing yourself on the details of the results because it has a clear description of what the student has and final grades. With all this, security would be needed because without this platform having security students could try to get access the result and manipulate it in their favor.

With the use of computers for information processing, the accompanying are conceivable: moment access to understudy’s close to home and course data, moment understudy data refreshing, programmed calculation of the Grade Point Average (GPA), era of the graduating understudies list, checking of fizzled courses, staying up with the latest record of the whole understudy body in the foundation, putting away course data, for example, course code, course portrayal, course unit, and scores with the end goal of GPA calculation, and creating easy to understand information section screens for convenience (Eteng, I. 2012). It is unfortunate that all educational establishments in the creating scene, for example, the Universities, Colleges of Education and polytechnics in Nigeria, still work under the manual technique for record keeping calculation of GPA and very inclined to blunders (Emmanuel, B and Choji, D.N 2012). Example of Universities that operate under manual method is Akwa Ibom State Polytechnic, Ikot Ekpene.


1.1 Statement of Problem

A transcript which is an official school report on the academic record of student, listing courses offered and grades received is a critical component of admission, transfer credit unit processing, and graduation processing. It is used to measure a student’s capability in various courses offered by the student. Without an adequate results processing system, the aim for which results are produced may not be achieved, a mistake made during the process might lead to a very big problem.

There has been this problem of too much work for the head of department of exams and records owing to the growing population of students’ in the institution; the head of department of the exams and records is faced with heads of file. At times sorting out a particular students’ file takes time.

This bitter complaint and the delay in the preparing of this students’ transcript has been the major concern and therefore has intensified the need to design a generating software which will go a long way in taking these problems and at the same time help to quicken the generating of students’ transcript.


1.2 Purpose of Study

The major purpose of this study is to design and implement a secure database system to record and manage student information and their result from year one to final year.


1.3 Significance of Study

This project work will be of immense help in securing student details and results stored on the Student Result Processing System in the Departments of Computer Science and prevent malicious attacks and ease the delay experienced in the manual examination result processing system. Below are the advantages of this project:

  1. Enhance speed of the results processing
  2. Eliminates errors due to manual processing
  3. Provides security measure to check students or staff mischievous act of changing marks on the result sheet.
  4. Ensures reliability and transparency in the creation and computation of results
  5. The separation of the front end and the back end to ensure data stored on the server is secure.
  6. Ensures high level quality service development of the management which will ensure that students are not subjected to undue suffering in collection of their transcript or clearance prior to the deployment for youth service.

1.4 Objectives of Study

Due to the controversy surrounding the manual generating of the student s’ transcript, it was fact that a study of this nature will clarify the causes of the problems being faced by the concerned departments and to map out the necessary solutions and techniques to the problems.

The aim of the proposed system is to design and implement computerized transcript generation system. The specific objectives guiding this research are to:

  1. Present a single platform that will be used to manage the processing of all transcript records within the Polytechnic.
  2. Design a package with simple and user-friendly interface that will be easy to use by ‘anybody’ with little computer knowledge.
  3. Provide an effective, efficient and error free results processing system for the Polytechnic.
  4. Design a computerized transcript processing and generation system for the Polytechnic.

1.5 Scope of Study

This project work will cover the entire front end interface design and back-end database processing of the Student Transcript System in the Departments of Computer Science. It will be able to print student transcript at the completion of student academy year in the school, process student registration. It also involves staff registration where it grants access to staff to allow them access the system.


1.6 Limitations

The following are some factors, which acted as an impeachment or constraints to the progress of the project work;

  1. Lack of Documented materials: It was difficult to start the project initially because reference materials at my disposal are limited.
  2. Financial constraint is another factors that limited the researcher in owning out this project effectively.
  3. Reluctance by the respondents in giving information fearing that the information sought would be used to intimidate them or print a negative image about them.

To counter this, I carried a pilot study to establish the possible cause of non-compliance in filling the questionnaires and adjusted the questionnaire accordingly. Also I encouraged the respondents to participate without holding back the information they might be having as the research instruments would not bear their names.


1.7 Research Questions

This research work will be guided by the following research questions:

  1. Why proposing a computerized method of transcript management to the school. Is it really important?
  2. How will the proposed computer-based transcript management system affect the existing conventional system?
  3. Does it address a short-term or a long-term need?
  4. Do participants have access to needed computer and communications equipment?

1.8 Definition of Terms

The following are the terms used in the work:

Data:

In computing, data is a collection of observations that has been translated into a form that is more convenient to move or process for useful decision making.

Process:

This is a series of actions that occur with respect to time in order to achieve a particular result. It is a program in execution.

Security:

This is the something that provides a sense of protection against loss, attack, or harm.

Mechanism:

This includes the methods, procedures, or processes involved in the way something works or is done.

Design:

Design is the creation of a plan or architectural blueprints that is used for the development of software’s.

Database:

This is an organized collection of data for easy retrieval and updating.

Scalability:

Scalability is the ability of a system, network, or process, to handle a growing amount of work in a capable manner or its ability to be enlarged to accommodate that growth.

Testing:

This can be described as a process of establishing that a software has attained a specific degree of quality with respect to user and system requirements and it is free of errors.

Software:

Software refers to the programs that control the hardware and produce the desired information or results.

Back-End:

This specifies all the actions that are done on the server and the data stored there.

Front-End:

This specifies the actions carried out on the web browser of a client accessing the server.


Chapter Five


Summary, Conclusion and Recommendations

5.1 Summary

The Computer-Based Transcript Management Information Systems (CBRMIS) are important. They underpin all the activities of a result management system by providing the basic storage and retrieval technology. The result application software sends data to and receives data from the DBMS which, if it is working properly, is hardly noticed at all. Yet great claims are made for different types of database and their particular offerings. You should at least be able to understand the basics to understand what you might be getting – or missing when you choose a Result Management System


5.2 Conclusion

In order to provide a security mechanism for the Students’ Result Processing System’s database, a study of the database was necessary. Texts and records on the system were studied in-depth to understand the structure of the database. This project has produced a Php/MySQL to keep the system’s database in a secure condition. The System was designed to receive PHP requests, query the database and return the response back to Frontend, thus preventing unauthorized access into the database through PHP scripts and other methods used by hackers. The package is flexible and dynamic, making future enhancements possible as the database grows and evolves.


5.3 Recommendation

The efficiency of the software security can be improved by the following recommendations:

  1. Continuous updates on tools used in developing the system.
  2. Scheduled security checks on the system should be done by an experienced database administrator to ensure nothing has been changed.
  3. All inputs into the database should be screened properly to avoid SQL injections

We recommend this work to the Departments of Computer Science to provide database security for the Students’ Result Processing System.


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