Session Templates

Created by Harrigan Phillips, Modified on Fri, 29 Jul 2022 at 09:33 AM by Richard Allwood

Session Templates are used to create Timetables for planning purposes. It is quite common for an organisation to create their Timetable for the year using Session Templates, then transferring them to Live Sessions when they are finished.


This is an alternative method to simply creating the Sessions immediately via the Session Creator screen (see previous article on Creating Sessions).




Accessing Session Templates


Navigate to Sessions -> Session Manager. Click on the File Menu at the top and select Template Mode.


You will be taken to a screen that is similar to the Session Manager screen. A selection of filters at the top and list of Sessions at the bottom.




Creating Template Groups


Before you create a Template you need to add a Group to file it under. Click on Template Manager on the right hand side to open a modal where these are added.


On the left hand side of the modal, click on Add Group. Give the name an appropriate Title e.g. Academic Year 2020, Education etc, and ensure the Available option is ticked. Once you click Save the Group will now appear in the list of Groups.

If you want to edit the Title or make the Group unavailable, click on theicon.

To view Templates already added to the Group, click on theicon.




Creating a Template


Once you have added a Group above or have located the Group you wish to attach a Template to, click on theicon for that Group. This will load any pre-existing Templates for that Group. If you have not yet added any the list will simply remain empty.


Click on Add Template and edit the fields accordingly:



FieldDescription
ReferenceThe title of the Template for reference e.g. All Timetables, 2020, College, Maths etc.
DetailsAn optional description of what type of Sessions will be attached to this Template.
Timetable ScaleThe Timetable Scale that will apply to this Template.
SiteThe specific site the Template is being set for.



Click on the Save button to confirm and this Template will be added to the list.

Close the modal when you have finished adding Template titles/details.




Adding a Session to a Template


On the Template Mode screen, aside from typical filters for the list at the bottom such as Subject and Location, you will notice there is no Date filter. This is because each Session attached to a Template is set against a Weekday not a specific date, and when transferring you select the Dates accordingly.


Before you start creating the Session, ensure that the Template and Day filters are set accordingly to when you want to create the Session.  For example, I might set Template to 'Academic Year 2020' and the Day to 'Monday', if I wanted to add a Session for a Monday against that Template.


When you have selected the relevant Template/Day, click on New Template Session on the right hand side.



Tip
We recommend you read the article on Creating Sessions or opening it in a new tab for reference to the next part of this article



You will be then be taken to the Session Creator screen but with limited options (such as no datepickers, weeks and Live Session related options). Add relevant Session Block(s) on the Scale, the Subject, Location, Learners and Staff in the same way you would when adding Live Sessions.




Tip
You can check for clashes against Live Sessions if you'd like on the Confirmation tab but you will have the same option to check for clashes before transferring the templated ones anyway



When you have finished setting up the templated Session, click Create Session(s). After completion, you will be returned to the Template Mode screen.




Editing a Session


To make changes to an existing templated Session, first locate it in the list at the bottom of the Template Mode screen. Once found, click on the Actions dropdown, then on Edit Session.



Tip
We recommend you read the article on Bulk Editing Sessions or opening it in a new tab for reference to the next part of this article



You will then be taken to the Session Bulk Edit screen but with limited options (such as no Date field). Make the relevant changes as required in the same way you would when editing Live Sessions.


When you have finished making changes and clicked the Update Session button on the Confirmation tab, you will be returned to the Template Mode screen.




Removing Session(s)


To remove a Session from the Template, first locate it in the list at the bottom of the Template Mode screen. Once found, click on the Actions dropdown, then on Remove Session.




Copying Staff


If you previously setup a Session with no Staff members attached (likely because you did not yet know who would be in the Session), and you have added the same Staff to a Session already, you can copy them within the same Template.


To copy the Staff, first locate the Session you want to copy from within the list at the bottom of the Template Mode screen. Once found, click on the Actions dropdown, then on Copy Staff.


Then locate the Session you want to copy to. Once found, click on the Actions dropdown, then on Paste Staff.




Preview Timetables


Before you transfer templated Sessions to Live Timetables, you can preview how your Template looks on Timetables. Click on either Student Timetable or Staff Timetable respectively, and from there you can switch Learners/Staff to preview their Timetable based on the Template you had selected.



Important
Ensure you have the right Template selected on screen beforehand



Set the options at the top of the modal accordingly:



FieldDescription
Start DateThe date at which to start adding Live Sessions.
End DateThe date at which to stop adding Live Sessions.
Weekly OccurrenceThe weekly timeframe at which you want to add Live Sessions e.g. Weekly, Every Other Week, Every 3rd Week etc
Holiday SetThe Holiday Set to use to avoid adding Live Sessions on dates your organisation is not open.



Important
If no Holiday Set is available, it is highly recommended you read the Holiday Sets article within the Timetabling category as this could save you time on having to remove Sessions later



Once you have set the options as required, click on Check Clashes.


A list of all possible Sessions to be created will appear and Databridge will process these leaving any in the list that have clashed with existing Live Sessions. Once complete, you will either see an empty list (meaning no clashes have occurred), or there will be Live Sessions displayed that will clash with your templated ones once uploaded. 


Whether or not there are clashes and you want to continue uploading your Template to Live Sessions, click on Import Template Sessions. You will be asked to confirm and on clicking Yes, a message will inform you that the process has started and an alert will appear when finished. 



Tip
Databridge alerts appear at the top of the screen represented by the stopwatch icon. You can click on this at any time to see results of any task alerts



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