Design And Implementation Of Hostel Allocation Students Information Management System
The growing number of students in higher institutions poses a lot of accommodation problems for students and School Management. Some of these problems include, few hostel not properly managed, Statistics of rooms required to match the growing number of student are farfetched. Also hostel administrators cannot give accurate information of the occupancy of a particular room. In View of all these, the solution proffered by this project is to have an automated hostel allocation system that not only gives student the opportunity to select their hostel of choice, but also provides the hostel administrators necessary functionalities to adequately manage the accommodation process in the school. To be able to achieve this, proper research was done on the already existing solution in the school, which is manual, and also on automated solutions deployed in other institutions like the University of Nigeria Lafia. It was realized that for such a system to work effectively there will be need for certain functionalities to be implemented. First, there should be avenue to add new hostel, block, room or bunk space. Second, the system should be able to be fed with the records of students that have duly paid their school fees. Third, students who have been uploaded should be able to get hostel on visiting the system. And lastly, the hostel administrators should be able to download records showing the status of the hostels indicating those that have been occupied and those that have not. Putting all these in consideration the system was designed using the V-Model OOAD methodology and implemented as a web based solution, for ease of access, with web forms using PHP and SQL Server as the database backend.
1.1 Background of Study
Hostel by definition is an establishment which provides cheap food and lodging for specific group of people, it is also seen as a home for students when staying away from their home. It has large well ventilated dormitories and single rooms and is situated in the school premises. Providing clean and calm hostel accommodation is one of the key responsible of school management. To manage the hostel facilities, a lot of data need to be maintained such as number of student hostel can accommodate, hostel rules and regulation, hostel fee, hostel in and out
of student, guest and visitor record and so on. So, this needs the system which has an ability to capture all kind of data and information and analyze it properly for smooth functioning of the hostel. Hostel warden can easily maintain the data.
Hostel Management in schools often involves administering of all activities of students. All these still remain difficult and require some job for the top management. Hostel Management functions and responsibilities in modern day schools have always been a problem in managing, because of the manual system method of tools they use. Hostel Management System is well designed specially to meet challenges of administrative set up of any school. Hostel Management System (HMS) can be used to assist in student’s allocation, setup hostel information, hostel application, and visitor management. In short, this system will assist the staff in managing some of the hostel activities.
Computer as indispensible tools in the total life of human endeavor has gained precedence in the world especially in the development growth of the Nigeria society. Computers are super machines that convert physical/mental effort into a mere easy life. The use of computer in our everyday life cannot be over emphasized. This is because of the gradual increase in human population and complexity of life, which has equally brought about increase in volumes of data being generated every day. The gradual increase in human population has equally affected the education sector. Thus higher institutions in the country today are currently faced with the challenges of hostels/halls allocation to students. The fact remain that the number of students usually out numbers the available accommodation. It is safe to say that most activities such as hostel allocation that are carried out in most universities in Nigeria are done manually. Therefore, there is a lot of strain on the individuals running the hostel allocation. An E-hostel system is simply software developed for managing most activities that take place in the hostels with the help of a hostel administrator [Prof. Peter A, 2017].
The hostel management system is web based software to provide college students accommodation to the university hostel more efficiently. This project also keeps details of the hostellers and applied students. It is headed by Warden. He will be the administrator. This document is intended to minimize human works and make hostel allocation an easier job for students and hostel authorities by providing online application for hostel, automatically select the students from the waiting list and mess calculation, complaint registration, notice board etc. etc. Students will get approval notification in their mails. Hostellers can view notice board, hostel fee and mess menu by login into the online system. The goal of this research work is to provide a solution to the problem of hostel management, by designing a computerized system which is user-friendly and GUI-oriented that will be compatible with the existing manual system. The system will solve the problem of hostel management; thus helping to reduce problems associated with the manual hostel management system.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
There are a lot of drawbacks in keeping and maintaining a hostel using the current method of management. Since most hostels are being run by only one hostel manager. The number of students in a room is sometimes not known by the officer. He has to go room by room to ensure that a room is occupied or not. Some many known problems include:
- Since the management is paper-based, the possibility of losing data is very high. Lots of papers are required to store all the information and data could be misplaced due to human error, natural disaster or in the event of a break in.
- People might not end up with the room originally allocated to them. This change may not be readily effected on the paper. This brings confusion later on as to which room is empty or occupied. Some hostels have a lot of rooms; it would be very tedious to go through all the rooms in search of a free room for an applicant.
- Students at the beginning of each session waste half of the semester looking for accommodation because the officer might not know the number of students in a room or know if a room is full or not. To avoid over allocation, the officer will not allocate a room when there are still enough bed spaces.
- It usually takes time to retrieve data or information that has been stored, because the workers need to find the actual folder where the data was stored previously. In turn, the hostel administrators would not be able to give accurate information of the occupancy of a particular room.
1.3 Objectives of the Study
The main objective of this study is to design and implement a web-based hostel allocation system capable of general room allocation. The project is designed to help in the management of hostel allocation to students in the University. To achieve the stated objective, the following specific objectives were laid out:
- To develop a secured central database system that will contain information on all the available rooms in the hostel and allocations done on them.
- To implement the system using web based technologies to solve the problem of up to date information. Any change to the data in the system readily be updated to all users.
- To display list of currently allocated students in hostel, the number of students per room and remaining bed spaces.
- To be able to generate reports on hostel occupancy and print out the evidence of hostel space being allocated to a student
1.4 Scope of the Study
The scope of this research work is centred on the development of hostel management system for College of Agriculture Lafia. This project which is web-based, automates the student’s hostel application process, allocates rooms to students, notifies students of their application status anytime they log onto the portal and also maintains the integrity of the information being processed by using password to limit access to only approved individuals. The system also creates automatic database for the storage of students and staff information.
1.5 Significance of the Study
The importance of this thesis cannot be overemphasized. The development of this work has enlightened me more on web development. PHP codes that was scary before the commencement of this project has become easy to understand.
The system will also be of importance to institution and general hostel or house managers as it will ease to a great extent the hostel management processes.
Some of its importance to them includes:
- The system will enable the students get their hostel room before the lectures will commence every semester.
- The system helps to know the particular student occupying bunk space each semester.
- The system will enable to improve in the condition of how the hostel is being managed. It gives the actual number of the students in the hostel statistically.
- Store all student information and enables the management team to retrieve back the information that have been stored and to maintain all activities in managing a hostel.
This work can also help scholars researching the field of web development as it will serve as a reference point to them.
1.6 Limitations of the Study
The major limitation faced during the writing of this project is during the actual software design. PHP algorithms required for the efficient room allocation was difficult to obtain. This made me use the available but less preferred code for the implementation.
Limited finance was another factor that hindered the progress of this research. Some online tutorials on hostel allocation design were paid. The finance to buy them was not readily available and the cost of stationary, printing, photocopying and transportation were much too. Although the developed software fulfilled the intended objectives, if money was in my side, I would have given more detailed software design.
Time was another limiting factor. Combining fieldwork and lectures to produce a comprehensive research report within the time limit was tiresome. Nevertheless, the quality of this study was not compromised.
1.7 Definition of Terms
A hostel is a home for students when staying away from their home. It has large well ventilated dormitories and single rooms and is situated in the school premises
2. Management Information System (MIS):
Is a system that provides information needed to manage organizations effectively.
3. Hostel Management System:
Is software that manage the activities of staff and students in the hostel, the system enables students to apply online for hostels and the system allocates rooms to the students in the hostels.
Historically, data referred to known facts that could be recorded and stored on computer media. These are facts made up of text, numbers, images, and sounds.
A systematically arranged collection of computer data, structured so that it can be automatically retrieved or manipulated. It is also called Databank.
6. Computer Program:
This is a set of instruction that guides the computer on the action to perform.
System is a combination or arrangement of parts to form an integrated whole. A system includes an orderly arrangement according to some common principles or rule
Summary and Conclusion
This project work titled “design and implementation of hostel management system” developed, is based on the requirement specification of the users and the analysis of the existing system. Identification of the drawbacks of the existing system leads to the designing of the computerized system that will be compatible with the existing system, the proposed system is more user friendly and more GUI oriented. This research project was able to build a hostel management system for College of Agriculture Lafia to manage the processes involved in hostel application, allocation and management. Having a robust database, it stores every information as related to hostels. It also allow for updating of such information as it is one of the activities of file processing and the characteristics of a database. So also the online application of hostels by students is made possible.
The system developed ensures that:
- Hostel application is done through the internet.
- Rooms are allotted automatically.
- Students will become more familiar with the use of the internet.
- Human errors will be minimized.
- Safety of student’s records and information is highly maintained.
- The layman will be able to use it without difficulty.
Chapter one of this project covers the introduction of the project with sections such as: statement of the problem, aims and objectives, background of study, scope and limitations etc. Chapter two discuss the literature review, related work on hostel management system are discussed. Chapter three of this project discusses the methodology adopted for this project, the method of data collection, system analysis and the table specification. Chapter four discusses the implementation and the results of this project and finally, the chapter five ends this project with the summary, conclusion and recommendations.
5.2 Review of Achievement
The hostel management system has been tested and found to achieve the following:
- Online hostel application
- The development of robust database to help manage both students and staff data at the appropriate data locations.
- Automatic allotment of rooms to hostels.
- Allocating students to hostels.
- Ensure security of information.
5.3 Areas of Application
This software can be used by any institution that uses the same hostel management and application policy with College Of Agriculture Lafia which is applicable to all institutions of higher learning in Nigeria.
5.4 Contribution to the Body of Knowledge
This research work which centers on hostel management system for College of Agriculture Lafia utilizes the concept of information technology. It expanded the use of internet as in web enabled hostel application process which helps in easier hostel application which is independent of human weakness as compared to the human working as compared to the working of the computer. This system will also help other institutions in having an insight of how hostel management system works.
5.5 Suggestion for Further Studies
Due to time constraints and lack of resources, an area such as online payment of accommodation and maintenance fee was not incorporated. This online payment facility will enable student’s to pay their hostel fee online without necessary going to the bank or coming to school with teller after paying at the bank, therefore it will go a long way reducing the stress from the overall process.
In conclusion, the hostel management system developed in PHP provides a platform for students of College of Agriculture Lafia to carryout hostel application online and to also enable the Staffs manage the hostel applications. The proposed system is faster and efficient compared to the existing system and can perform the following task:
- Online hostel application
- Online students and staff information management
- Online hostel application approval based on first come first serve
- Viewing hostel application status online
- Sending of application alert to students via sms.
The software does not capture online payment, other hostel issues such as mess activities, visitors profile etc.
The researcher wishes to recommend that other researchers should work on areas such as the implementation of the online hostel fee payment.
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