There is no better way to start a Friday than with some industry acronym jargon, and this post goes out to all my Community College buddies who will (unfortunately!) know exactly what I mean when I mention our annual compliance reporting via the NSW Board of Adult and Community Education (ACE) AVETMISS Online Validation and Lodgement (OLiV) service.

Christmas is creeping nearer and that means that pesky 31st January deadline of 100% accurate data is reaching the top of everyone’s to do list. As nobody wants that fun overnight validation process pestering them during holidays, now is a good time to start running your data through OliV to clean up any data entry errors that may have crept in during the year.

The increase in squish support tasks regarding AVETMISS tells me you are all starting to test your data for errors, so I thought that for the good of all our colleagues, I’d share some hints and tips with everyone.

If this is your first time reporting AVETMISS from onCourse, read up on the <a href=”>AVETMISS chapter in the user handbook</a> first. It will also tell you about some of the special ways we massage the data during export to reduce your validation errors.

How to export your data for OLiV

  1. In onCourse, choose File >Import/Export > Export AVETMISS and use the date range 1/1/2012 to 31/12/2012. This will pick up all your data (VET and non-VET) for 2012. To exclude the non-VET data, tick the option ‘export only VET courses’.

You need to choose if you are going to report all your training activity for the year, or just your VET activity. Remember you are only obliged to report your VET data, but for the good of the sector, they’d really really like you to report everything. Perhaps you’d like to see if you have a low error rate with all your data first, and then decide later if you want to leave out your general programs.

  1. For OLiV exports, choose the AVETMISS flavour ‘AVETMISS standard’. Check the export folder location and choose proceed.

Don’t choose NSW DET - I know OLiV belongs to NSW DET, but that export type is for traineeship and SSP type program funding. It has extra fields and calculates the NAT00130 in a different way that will cause you headache inducing errors in OLiV

  1. The export process may take a few minutes and will notify you when it is complete. This will create a folder of files in your chosen location.

  2. Go to the OLiV website and log in with your college’s credentials.

  3. If you are using a Mac, select the second option “ Select each required .txt files and Lodge them together “. The window will change and show you a browse option to locate each file individually on your computer. You can zip and upload from Windows machines, but make sure you zip your selected files from inside the folder onCourse created - don’t zip the whole folder.

DO NOT upload your NAT00085 file - this all your student’s confidential address data - it is only needed for funded programs, not the OLiV standard annual upload.

  1. If you are uploading one file at at time, click on the browse button next to each file name and locate and select the file that was exported from onCourse with the same name. e.g. NAT00010 will be NAT00010.txt on your computer.

  2. When you have attached all the files, select submit. If something goes wrong here, and you have an onCourse support contract, please log a squish task. Otherwise you will get an upload successful message and a lodgement number. You will need to log in again tomorrow to check the results of your lodgement as the data gets validated in a batch process overnight. You can also log squish tasks for assistance with interpreting the error reports.

Some common errors and how to fix them

In the NAT00020 file - Training Sites

You might get suburb/postcode mismatches here either because you spelt the suburb incorrectly or chose the wrong postcode. Australia Post is your friend who will provide the answers you seek. Update the data in your onCourse site record and you’re all set.

In the NAT00060 file - Units of Competency

If you report accredited course modules here, you might find you get errors in the Field of Education ID data. Unfortunately that information is not published on TGA so please notify us of the error (which will include the correct value) and we can update it manually for you. You can’t fix this inside onCourse yourself as this data is managed and maintained on a central server, but on the plus side, when we update it, it fixes it for everyone using onCourse.

If you get errors relating to units of competency which are published on TGA e.g. units from a Training Package, then please notify us. We will check the data, and then probably ask you to contact the OLiV validation team. I have a sneaking suspicion that right now their validation files aren’t up to date with the latest data published by TGA, but with any luck they will do an upgrade to OLiV soon and these sorts of errors will go away.

You may also get warnings in this file about units reported with ZERO nominal hours. To find the data for nominal hours, visit the Victorian Purchasing Guides. Then go into the onCourse Unit of Competency/Module window, locate your unit, double click on it and enter some data in the nominal hours field. This is a good thing for your funding… the more hours you report the better, and ZERO hours for all students engaging with that unit is not the best of ideas.

In the NAT00080 file - Student data

Just like the NAT00020, the most common data entry problems here relate to suburb/postcode mismatches. Visit Australia Post and correct the data in your student’s file. Use the client number in the error report to search in the onCourse contact record by student number.

In the NAT000120 file - Outcomes

If you have had errors in the NAT00060 file, you will find them all repeated here, possibly two or three times. Ignore them for the time being - once you/ish/OLiV update the data these errors will all go away.

All the errors that are ‘Zero/Space is not allowed in this field’ are outcomes which don’t have results yet, where the end date is in 2012 (so should have results). These might be some Term 4 classes where you don’t legitimately have results yet. All you get from the AVETMISS error report is their student number, so you can start working through the list in the contact record and chasing tutors/changing outcome end dates for outcomes where you should have results/the student is completing next year. Alternatively, select all your VET classes for 2012 in the class window and print an Assessment Outcome report for each of them, and you will see for which students and which units you have blank outcomes.

Remember onCourse automatically exports a 70 for any outcome due to finish AFTER your reporting period end date i.e. 31/12/2012 so you don’t need to set these manually.

Anything other common error reports you are finding? Comment on this post and we can all learn how to fix it together :)