The major themes for this year's release are improved stability and the resolution of technical issues. This involves substantial structural changes to almost every interface and functionality within TDS. Here are some highlights:
Code Architecture update to improve response times on almost every page load. This allows more efficient processing in TD's clustered hosting environment and increases overall system reliability.
Interface Redesign, or Responsive Design, will accommodate a responsive framework across all TDS interfaces. This will allow all TDS users to move seamlessly across tablets, smartphones, and PCs. This redesign impacts virtually every interface element and changes the look and feel of the post-logged-in experience-changes necessary in order to work on every type of device.
Prospect Inquiry added as a module to facilitate quick contact information for anyone online who expresses interest in a client's institution or program offerings, without requiring an account registration. This will give institutions the ability to conduct CRM activities, such as analyzing demand, conducting market outreach, and increasing applications.
Submit Application added as an optional feature to enhance the user experience, ensuring students' ability to take a deliberate action to complete their application and receive instant confirmation, as well as a persistent indicator on their application homepage that the submission was successful.
ISSS/SEVIS Module updates include dozens of usability and navigation enhancements recommended by our Working Group and user community.
Discover all of this and more at TDU 2016.
Product Evangelist, Terra Dotta
While most of us entered international education because we believe in the power of intercultural understanding, we also know that we are in a profession that is subject to the whims of economics – local, national and global. A weak dollar makes the United States an educational “bargain” while straining the budgets of study abroad programs. Though the result of political acts, the events of September 11 impacted the ability of students to come to the United States, particularly those from Middle Eastern countries, negatively impacting budgets of U.S. international student services offices and ESL programs.
The downturn of the U.S. economy around 2008 had a significant impact on study abroad enrollments as families were forced to adjust priorities in part due to the lost value of investments. Particularly impacted were summer enrollments where financial aid played less of a role and personal funds were more discretionary.
However, all economic impacts need not be viewed negatively. Realizing the economic benefit of international education, Indiana University and NAFSA developed a tool about 20 years ago whereby the economic impact of international student enrollments is determined down to the congressional district. This important tool continues to be a key element of advocacy efforts on multiple levels.
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