Data & Analytics

Using data to understand where we’ve been, where we are now, and where we are going are cornerstones of UNC Charlotte’s Shaping What’s Next strategic plan. Departments need to have access to data typically housed in separate systems. Finding, understanding, and managing data are shared responsibilities involving the Office of Institutional Effectiveness & Analytics, the Office of OneIT, report writers, and data scientists located within the colleges and administrative departments.

OneIT provides leadership by developing collaborative guidelines for managing, locating, organizing, securing, disseminating data, and supporting enterprise reporting tools. See OneIT’s strategic plan for 2023-2027 for specific initiatives; the data & analytics team maintains and supports the reporting and analytics environments.

Data Governance

Data Governance in the university setting involves the development of policies, processes, and structures to manage and steward the institution’s data assets. It aims to ensure data quality, security, privacy, and compliance while facilitating access and integration of data across various departments. The goal is to manage institutional data as a shared resource supporting the university’s mission and enabling data-informed decision-making.

Data Lakes

A data lake is a centralized repository designed to store, process, and secure large amounts of data. Similar to a big storage pool that holds a vast amount of water, or in this case, data. It’s a place where you can pour in all kinds of data, whether it’s neatly organized or a bit messy, and keep it there until you need it. Data lakes allow for the storage of raw data in its original form and provide the flexibility to process and analyze this data for various analytic needs, such as big data processing, real-time analytics, and machine learning. 

Below are current Data Lakes that are being maintained by the Office of OneIT:

  • Banner ODS
  • Cornerstone
  • Niner Central
  • Niner Research
  • Slate
  • Niner Engage
  • Onoma
  • Canvas
  • EAB Navigate
  • Vote (coming soon)

Enterprise Reporting Tools

The Office of OneIT provides WebFOCUS.  WebFOCUS mines data from university systems and can create reports and visualizations in various formats, including dashboards. To request access to WebFOCUS, contact the OneIT Service Desk.

Reports are available through Report Express and Report Central

  • Basic reports are available to all faculty and staff through Report Express. Information that can be obtained from Report Express include a class list, list of enrolled students or graduation students, and a class worksheet.
  • Advanced reporting capabilities are provided through Report Central. Supervisors can request access for staff by contacting the OneIT Service Desk and indicating what module is needed.

Data Visualization Software

Below are several tools available for analyzing and visualizing data: 

WebFOCUS (Recommended)

An enterprise reporting tool, WebFOCUS is a comprehensive business intelligence (BI) and analytics platform. It enables the university to extract insights from our data by providing tools for reporting, dashboards, data visualization, and ad hoc querying. With WebFOCUS, users can create interactive reports, build customized dashboards, and explore data through intuitive interfaces. The platform supports various data sources, including relational databases, spreadsheets, and web services.

Alteryx (Limited Support)

Alteryx is a robust data analytics platform that simplifies data preparation and offers advanced analytics capabilities. Users can blend and transform data from various sources, create repeatable workflows, perform statistical analysis, build predictive models, and collaborate with across departments. Alteryx is free for faculty and students through their SparkEd program. Currently, there is no university-wide license for staff.

Tableau (Limited Support)

A popular data visualization tool supported by the Office of Institutional Effectiveness & Analytics. Tableau Desktop is free for faculty and students, but there is currently no university-wide license for staff.

PowerBI (No Support)

PowerBI is a popular Microsoft application. A limited version is available through our campus Microsoft agreement through Office 365, see this FAQ for more information.