Emerge Management Console

Introduction

This guide covers the setup and configuration of the Emerge Management Console (EMC) for use with the Emerge for Schools App. There are other documents that should be read in connection with this guide to ensure you have met pre-requisites and cover the device part of the installation. They can all be found on our Emerge Documentation page.  Where relevant below, we have provided details of the related documentation.

If you are using Emerge for Parents only, please see the dedicated page.

EMC_Devices_BlankThe Emerge Management Console is divided into four sections all relevant to the setup and configuration of Emerge. You will need to do some configuration in each section before Emerge is ready to use live in a school environment.

Setting up Emerge - Process Outline

  1. Install Emerge on your Server – see the Emerge Server Installation page.
  2. Install Emerge on at least 1 device – see the Install Emerge on your Device page.
    • Installation of the App on subsequent additional devices can be completed at any time.
  3. Configure the Management Console generic settings – outlined below.
  4. Create Users and Groups – outlined below..
  5. Add Devices to the console  – outlined below.
  6. Provide User account details to end-users along with service URL for access to the system.
  7. Begin using Emerge in your school!

EMC Settings Tab

There are some key pieces of information that need to be configured in settings before any devices or users are created.

EMC_Settings

Service URL

1We recommend, if not already in place, that the server on which Emerge is installed is assigned a static IP address to prevent possible configuration changes being required.

One of the pieces of information required to log into Emerge, from a device, is the Service URL; this displays as an HTTP link with the current machines IP address1. It is displayed by default and does not require configuration. Make a note of this as you will need to provide it to the devices that will access Emerge.

Enable Service Bus?

When running Emerge via a device that is connected to a network external to the network hosting the Emerge service (e.g. outside of the school, on 3G or on a network within the school that does not cover the subnet in which the Emerge service runs) login must happen over the internet via the Azure Cloud service which is a secure method of allowing Emerge to access information remotely. It has the added benefit of not requiring any additional ports on your firewall to be opened. The Emerge Service Bus tick box will enable an external Service URL link in the Microsoft Azure Cloud, allowing Emerge to be accessible live anywhere. If you do not tick the box, users will only be able to access live data when within the confines of the wireless network that has direct access to the Emerge service. As stated within the management console, use of the service bus may incur additional charges. You will be advised of any such charges by your account manager; should you have any queries on this matter, please speak to them as a first port of call.

Default User Settings

Theme: Choose from 'Primary' or 'Secondary' to specify the appearance of Emerge to users.

Pri_Home3.06

Primary Theme

Sec_Home3.06

Secondary Theme

 

 

 

Profile: The default permission level for newly created Emerge user accounts. You can change this setting on a per user basis at creation or at a later stage. We suggest setting the default to suit your most commonly selected option for ease of use. See "Emerge User Profiles" (below or via the link) for a breakdown of each setting.

Password Timeout: The time in hours at which the Emerge app will request the user re-enter their password. Default is 1 hour, and can be set to a maximum of 24 hours or any value in between. For example to request a user enter their password once every 2½ hours would require this value to be set to 2:30. This provides additional security, in addition to the Emerge passcode, to help prevent unauthorised access to MIS data.

Max Offline Days: The time before which the Emerge app will delete any local data if an valid connection to the Emerge Server cannot be reached. Default is 7 days.

Proxy Settings

EMC_proxyMany schools and local authorities control access to the Internet through a proxy server; Emerge of course allows for this scenario. By default Emerge will try to figure out the URL of any proxy server in place but you should ensure this URL is correct and verify the additional setting via the ‘Proxy Settings…’ button on the right of the console (which will open a new window as shown). If you do not have a proxy in place, you should make sure this section is left blank. In addition to the settings in Emerge you will need to validate that the proxy server will allow access to the URL’s required by Xporter as detailed in the Emerge Pre-Requisites page under 'Xporter Internet Access'.

You may need to make changes on your device also - check out our Emerge Device Proxy Settings guide for more information.

Device Configuration Parameters

6.2.0.773Settings_SiteParamsIt is possible to change some of the parameter values to determine what and how information is displayed on Emerge devices, any changes made to the configuration parameters will require a data reset for the changes to take effect.  This can be achieved by pressing the ‘Reset’ button shown here. This will update Emerge devices when they next connect to the server.

EMC_ResetDBs


Explanation of Parameters

SectionNameValuesDescription
AssessmentsOldest Assessment Results (Acad Years)Current Year
1
...
10
Specifies how far back assessment should be collected for display on the student record.

The higher this setting the more data that will be used by Emerge so caution should be exercised before specifying this parameter. Your users will help specify the balance between access to data and usability.

Xpressions is also affected by this setting. If a parental enabled template that has a ResultSet date range greater than this setting, blank results may be displayed to parents.
AssessmentsFixed start date for Assessment ResultsFree Text
In the format yyyy-mm-dd e.g. 2014-09-01
Specify a date after which Assessment results should be displayed.
Overrides "Oldest Assessment Results (Acad Years)" for display in the app.
- NB: data is still collected according to the "Oldest Assessment Results (Acad Years)" setting but data is displayed according to this parameter when set.
AttendancePrimary Attendance Marks Free text, comma separated This setting allows you to define the most important attendance marks, e.g. the ones you use most often and would like to appear at the top of the list shown on the device. The list should be comma separated and comprise only supported attendance marks from your MIS, e.g. “L,U,H,I”.
AttendanceAttendance Past Days Default (WS)
Week Start
0
1
...
6
7 (1 week)
8
...
13
14 (2 weeks)
Total number of previous days to display for Emerge registers. Used in conjunction with Attendance Total Days  (see below)
AttendanceAbsent Meal TypeDependent on SIMS configurationSpecify what meal type should be recorded when a student is marked as absent. Usually this will map back to a meal type of 'Absent' but may not depending on your own school systems. Speak to your SIMS Administrator or Catering staff if you are not sure.
AttendanceEnable Lesson Monitor Default (On)
On
Off
Enable/Disable the use of SIMS.NET class periods using Lesson Monitor.
AttendanceEnable Student MealsDefault (No)
Yes
If you make use of SIMS Dinner Money you can enable this setting so that the morning register taking will allow you to record attendance and dinner choices at the same time.
AttendanceAttendance Total Days Default (7)
1
...
6
7 (1 week)
8
...
13
14 (2 weeks)
...
17
Total number of days to display for Emerge registers (including previous days).

For example,

  1. The default setting of ‘7’, shown in the screenshot above, will show registers for this week when the default Attendance Past Days setting of WS is used.


  2. Specifying a value of '2' will limit the registers to show only today and tomorrow. This can be used to limit the amount of data sent to Emerge devices.

ConductOldest Behaviour (Months) Start of Year
Default (6)
1
2
...
24
Total number of months for Behaviour records. The higher this setting the more data that will be used by Emerge so caution should be exercised before specifying this parameter. Your users will help specify the balance between access to data and usability.
ConductDefault Allow Evidence Yes
No
Controls if users can add media as evidence when recording behaviour and achievement. Usually this would be set to ‘Yes’, but ‘No’ can be used when you would like to prevent users uploading media. This setting controls the user default setting, applied automatically to all new users; it can be changed on a per user basis however. 
Facility CMISLesson to PM Tolerance Don't Update
5 mins
10 mins
...
1 hour
CMIS only
If set, marks taken for a lesson with a start time +/- the minutes specified will also update the PM session mark.
Facility CMISLesson to AM Tolerance Don't Update
5 mins
10 mins
...
1 hour
CMIS only
If set, marks taken for a lesson with a start time +/- the minutes specified will also update the AM session mark.
MessagingAlert GCX Foldere.g. "C:\Program Files (x86)\
Groupcall\Xporter\
Alert\alert.gcx"
For messenger v5 customers. Specify the location of the Alert GCX.
MessagingSMS Provider No Messaging
Groupcall
School Comms
For Messenger and School Comms customers only; this setting specifies which SMS provider is used for the school.
MessagingMessenger VersionMessenger 4 (Classic)
Messenger 5 (Online)
For Groupcall Messenger customers only; specify which version is being used.
MessagingMessenger.mdb file e.g. "C:\Program Files (x86)\
Groupcall\Xporter\
Emerge\Gcx\Shared
\Groupcall_Empty.mdb"
For Groupcall Messenger customers, it is possible to integrate the two products to allow SMS messages to be sent from Emerge, using the school’s Groupcall Messenger account. You should enter the location of the .mdb file here. The location of this file will vary based on your MIS and Network Infrastructure typically in the format of:\\ServerName\MIS\Groupcall \Groupcall_MIS.mdb  
XpressionsParental Web SiteFree textSpecify the website displayed in the Emerge for Parents / Groupcall app.
Should be a full URL e.g. http://www.greenabbey.sch.uk.
Use WIC (Windows Imaging Components) Default (No)
Yes
Uses WIC to resize student and staff photos, image quality is controlled by the setting Image Quality (1 to 10)
Image Quality (1 to 10)Default (5)
Original
1
...
10
Useful for large datasets to show a smaller photo on an Emerge device. Reduces size of Photos database required by Emerge app.

EMC Users Tab

Emerge will require user accounts to be created to use for accessing data within the App on devices.

EMC_Users_Add

 

Add a New User

  1. Ensure you are in the ‘Users’ area of the console.
  2. To add a new user, click the Add button.
  3. Supply Username and Password (password needs to be entered twice to confirm).
    • The username will need to be in lower case and should be unique within the school; we suggest defining a robust naming convention to ensure duplicates are not created. This could be the same as any existing policies (such as email, MIS or windows logon) in place for convenience. Administratively they remain independent as Emerge has no inter-relationship with such systems at this level, but your users may find it more convenient to remember 1 username for multiple systems.
  4. Select the relevant user settings and permission level for the user account. As described in the EMC Settings Tab section, the default can should be changed on a per user basis where necessary. See “Emerge User Profiles” (below or via the link) for a breakdown of each setting.
  5. Set the appropriate user parameters.
NameValuesDescription
Allow EvidenceDefault (See Settings)
Yes
No
Use this option to override "Default Allow Evidence" from the settings tab of the EMC.
Controls if users can add media as evidence when recording behaviour and achievement. Usually this would be set to Default, but ‘Yes/‘No’ can be used on a per user basis when you would like to control which users can upload media.
Staff MemberDependent on MIS configurationPick the relevant MIS user so that the correct personalisation (such as timetable etc) are applied to Emerge.
Supply Staff is available as a generic option for any non-teaching or cover staff members.
Show All Assessment TemplatesYes
No
Controls access to the Assessment Templates for Assessment Write-back.
- If set to Yes, all templates from SIMS are visible. Users will see those templates assigned to them as well as those not assigned to them, but as a separate list for ease of access.
- If set to No, only those templates to which the user is assigned in SIMS are visible on Emerge.

NB: Only applies if "Staff Member" has been defined as a member of staff from the MIS (i.e. that member of staff is not 'Supply Staff').
View Staff PersonalAs Profile
Yes
No
Controls access to staff personal details such as contact information and next of kin etc.
- "As Profile" = Access to other Staff members personal information will be controlled by the roles applied to a user in the EMC.
- "Yes" = Access to other Staff members personal information will be available to the user regardless of EMC roles.
- "No" = Access to other Staff members personal information will not be available to the user regardless of EMC roles.
Config Red ButtonYes
No
Controls access to the configure pages in the Help Button on the Emerge devices.
Anyone who has this parameter set to 'Yes' can specify SMS destinations, direct call numbers and SMS templates from their device. The configuration is then applied to all other devices regardless of role.

 

When complete, click Save. All successfully created users will show in the list at the top of the console.

You should give the user name and password to your end users to specify within the app itself.

Emerge User Profiles

Emerge User Profiles

It is necessary to associate each user with a profile that controls what information they have access to in the Emerge App itself. The current profiles are outlined below.

Profile Name Senior Management Team 2 Teacher 2 Teacher (No Session Attendance) Emerge Admin Disabled
Roles included Notes  Also used for Admin. Can be used for Supply Teacher by omitting the association with a staff code in the EMC. Should be limited to only a few users. Has no rights and should be used to effectively disable a user when that user should no longer have access to any Emerge function.
View all staff information 1 yes
Take AM and PM (Session) Attendance yes yes
Take Lesson Attendance yes yes yes
View all Student Information yes yes yes
Record Behaviour and Achievement yes yes yes
View Reports Module yes
Access the Emerge Admin App yes

 

If this role is not included in a profile, the user can view limited staff information i.e. names and timetables etc, but not address or next of kin details. It can be manually toggled using the "View Staff Personal" setting on the users tab in order to include it or exclude such access from a profile.

An identical profile is available without the messaging role included - labelled (No Messenger) for use where a Messaging Subscription from Groupcall or an approved third party is enabled but where you wish to exclude certain users from sending messages.

EMC Groups Tab

Groups, is an optional section for Emerge, and would be used to mass assign users for shared devices.

Add a New Group

  1. Ensure you are in the ‘Groups’ area of the console.
  2. To add a new group, click the Add button.
  3. Supply Group Name details, for example “Lunchtime Supervisors”.
  4. Select the corresponding members to be assigned to that group from the box on the right .

When complete, click Save.

EMC Devices Tab

From this section of the console you will manage the devices used with the Emerge for Schools App in your school.

Linking Devices with Users and Groups – the Device Identifier

In order to make Emerge as secure as possible, it is necessary to link users with devices.  This ensures that users can only use Emerge with devices on which they have been authorised.  This is known as 2-factor authentication – something you know (a username and password) and something you have (an authorised device). Every device has a unique identifier. The ID is unique to each device and therefore cannot be altered or ‘spoofed’ as a device name could be. The Emerge Server uses the device Device Identifier to link devices with Users and Groups by adding them to an ‘allowed’ list in the console. For more information on the security of Emerge, please see the Emerge Data Sharing Agreement.

Obtaining the Device Identifier

This process differs slightly between device and platform. Please see Obtaining the Device Identifier for detail on how to do this either as the Emerge Administrator or by directing end users to that page so that they can send the ID to you.

Adding the Device Identifier to the Console and Linking Users/Groups

EMC_Devices_Add

  1. Ensure you are in the ‘Devices’ section of the Console.
  2. After obtaining the device ID, click the Add button located at the top right of the screen.
  3. Enter the ID
    • Either type it in whilst looking at the device or copy and paste it from a suitable location such as email or spread sheet.
    • Alternatively if you have previously tried to connect a device1, which is not currently showing on the devices list, it will appear on the drop down list, allowing you to add it straight into the console.
  4. Enter a device description (we recommend having a robust naming convention for this to aid in estate management).
  5. Assign the device to any Groups as relevant.
  6. Assign the device to ALL users that you wish to be able to utilise the device.
    • Usually this will be 1 device per user, however if you are operating any ‘pool’ devices that may be shared by several staff you should add all relevant users here, individually or through the use of groups.
    • Only those users associated with a device may use it. Even if they have the correct account details, they cannot use the device unless they are associated with it here.

When complete, click Save.

All successfully authorised devices will show in the list at the top of the devices section of the console – if the device you have just added does not appear, it is possible you did not click save; repeat steps 2 – 7 before contacting support. In certain cases a simple exit and re-opening of the console may resolve your issue; please let us know however if this becomes ‘the norm’ as there may be an underlying issue that requires resolution.



1 A connection attempt can be made from the device by simply entering the Service URL and user credentials. The user will receive an error message stating “Invalid Device” until you add the ID to the devices list.

Enabling Dinner Registers in Emerge for Schools

DinnerRegFull
If you have the "Dinner Money"  module in SIMS (required to work within Emerge) then all you need to do is make some configuration changes in your school's Emerge Management Console.

Configuration

Open the Emerge Management Console on the school server;

  1. Select the 'Settings' tab.
  2. Look in the Site Parameters setting for the 'Enable Student Meals' option.
  3. Set this to 'Yes'.
  4. Find the 'Absent Meal Type' parameter.
  5. Dependent on SIMS configuration you will see a list of options.
  6. Specify what meal type should be recorded when a student is marked as absent.
    • Usually this will map back to a meal type of 'Absent' but may not depending on your own school systems.
    • Speak to your SIMS Administrator or Catering staff if you are not sure.
  7. Be sure to 'Save Changes' using the button in the bottom right of the management console.

Your users will now have the ability to record dinner choices in to SIMS when taking morning registration.

Configure the 'Help Me' Button in Emerge

Before users can raise a 'Help Me' alarm it's necessary for some configuration to take place. The message text template of the SMS that is sent and the recipients of the SMSs or direct calls need to be specified.

We recommend this is done as soon as possible after installation so that the facility is available in the event that someone needs to raise the alarm.
See the EMC Users Tab guide for help with this if you are unfamiliar with assigning parameters to users. The instructions apply for existing users from step 4 onwards.

From within the Emerge Management Console you will need to assign the 'Config Red Button' user parameter to any user you wish to grant access to configuration rights for this feature. This is applied by default to anyone with the SMT user profile at the time of installation (of the new feature or as a fresh install).

Once you have set the relevant user parameter in the management console a user can now set up the 'Help Me' button from the Emerge app on a device.

 

Tell me how...

Log in to Emerge and select the 'Help Me' button module;

  1. Select the 'Configure' option from the bottom right of the screen.
    • If a user does not have this option but has the 'Config Red Button' parameter set to 'Yes' in the Management Console they should lock the app on their device and unlock it again to receive updated user settings.
  2. Choose one of the 3 Help categories.
  3. Edit the default 'Message Text' (if required).
  4. Enter a 'Direct Phone' number (if required).
    • The ‘Phone Direct’ option is available to devices with a SIM card and phone functionality.
      • i.e. not Tablets/Media players that may have a SIM card for data but are not capable of making calls.
    • Pressing this option will initiate a call via the mobile phone itself directly to a pre-configured number.
    • You can think of it like a speed dial option.
  5. Select 'Add' to set up the list of SMS destinations.
  6. Either choose a mobile number saved against a staff record,
  7. Or enter a new number by typing it out in full in the 'Search' box and then select the new row that appears to add it to the list of SMS destinations.
    • Once an SMS number has been added to the list of 'SMS Destinations' you can delete it if required by swiping left across the number (on Apple iOS) or making a long press on (Android) to reveal the delete option.
  8. Repeat for the other Help categories as required and then 'Save Changes'.
    • If you wish to limit the categories available to users when raising an alert then you should only configure those you wish to be available to all users.
  9. Any categories that have been configured and saved will now show on the 'Help Me' button screen.
    • The configuration changes will be available to all Emerge users once the device on which the configuration takes place has synced with the Emerge server and all other devices have received those changes back from the server. In reality, this happens overnight but can be forced by logging out and logging back in, or manually clearing databases on devices, as required.

 

 

HelpMe_Config_Walkthrough

Congratulations - Emerge is set up!

Once the steps outlined above have been completed you will be able to hand out devices to users to begin using Emerge.

Next Steps...

If you need any further assistance or get in to any difficulty, please contact your School Administrator. Alternatively, they can contact Groupcall Support on your behalf.

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