Note: This article's focus is on the next-generation Service Learning Module (SLM), released by Galaxy Digital in late 2017/early 2018. For information on the old version (Legacy SLM), click here. The SLM is an add-on module and is not part of a standard Connect platform. SLM features are only available to clients who have purchased the module.
As an SLM Leader, you can view, edit, delete, and approve or decline volunteer hours submitted by your students for your courses. In addition, you can add hours on behalf of a student, view student reflections, and export existing hours to a spreadsheet. All of these tasks can be accomplished in the Hours area of your SLM Leader Portal.
To access the Hours area of your SLM Leader Portal:
- Log into your Connect site.
- Select SLM Leader Portal from your profile menu.
Note: Your site manager must designate you as an SLM Leader before you can access the SLM Leader Portal and the management capabilities described here.
- Click Hours to view your table of student hours.
- Select the block and user group for the course you wish to view. (Click image for a larger view.)
- Click Go. The Hours table will populate with all volunteer hours that have been submitted for the course during the block selected. (Click image for a larger view.)
Note that both the Status column and the color of the row indicate the status (approved, pending, etc.) of the hours. From this point, you can approve or deny hours, edit hour submissions, delete hours, and view student reflections. In addition, you can add hours on behalf of a student and export existing hours. You can also search for a specific record by student name or need title using the search boxes at the top of those columns
Note: You can sort any column in the table by clicking the column header. You can also search student first name, student last name, or need. To view data for an individual student, click on their name. This will take you to their User Info area. (In fact, many of the tasks described here can also be accomplished from the User Info area of your SLM Leader Portal.)
If your site requires approval of volunteer hours, your students' hours will appear with a status of Pending once they are submitted.
Note: Depending on your site's settings, students may have to take two steps to submit hours: (1) entering the hours, and then (2) verifying/submitting them. If a student enters the hours but does not verify them, you'll see a status of Entered.
To approve or deny submitted hours, select the applicable status from the Status dropdown.
If hours are approved, the background will change to a blue-green color, and the status will read "Approved." If hours are denied, the background will change to red, and the status will red "Denied."
To edit hours a student has submitted from the Hours area:
- In the Options column, click the Edit (pencil) icon for the hours to edit. The Edit Hours form is displayed with all of the hours data entered.
- Make needed changes to the Date Worked, Hours Worked, Miles Traveled, Description, and (if applicable) Reflections fields.
- Click Submit Hour Entry.
The hour status does not change as a result of your edit. If the hours were pending before you made the changes, they will remain pending, and you will still need to manually approve them.
Deleting hours is not the same as denying them. When you deny hours, you change their status so that they don't count toward the students' course goals (if approval is required), but the hours remain on the student's record in the Connect system. If you delete hours, you erase any record of their having existed, and they will not show up in your records or in site hours reports.
To delete a student's hours from the Hours area of your SLM Leader Portal, click the X for the hours under the Options column, and then click Yes to confirm the deletion.
To add hours on behalf of a student from the Needs area of your SLM Leader Portal:
- Click the Add Hours button, located on the right-hand side of the page.
- Begin typing the name of one of your students If they are registered for one of your courses, their name will appear in a dropdown, and you can click to select it.
- In the Need Response Lookup field that appears, begin typing the need title. The need will appear in the dropdown only if the student has submitted a response to it.
- In the Hour Details form that appears, complete the Date Worked, Hours Worked, Miles Traveled, Description, and (if applicable) Reflections fields
- Click Submit Hour Entry.
Once you have submitted the hours, their status will follow the settings of your site. For example, if all hours on your site are automatically pending upon submission, the hours you submit will be pending until they are approved by you, an agency manager, or a site manager as applicable.
As an SLM Leader, you can ask students to answer reflection questions each time they submit volunteer hours. Click here to learn how to add and edit reflection questions (including how to make them mandatory).
If your course includes reflection questions, you'll see an icon in the Reflections column in the Hours area.
Tip: If your course does not include reflection questions, you can hide the Reflections column by clearing its check box in the Table Filter, located on the right side of your screen, just above the table.
Click the applicable icon in the Reflections column to view the student's reflections. All answers to reflection questions will be displayed, and file uploads will be available as a link, as shown below.
To export your students' hours data from the Hours area of your SLM Leader Portal:
- Select the block and user group (course) from the dropdowns and click Go.
- Click the Export Hours button, located on the right-hand side of the page.
The exported spreadsheet displays the following information for each student:
- Name, email address, and reference ID
- Need and posting agency
- Hours data (number of hours worked, date worked, date hours were added, date hours were updated, and status)
- Block (academic period)
- User group (course)
- Answers to reflection questions, with file uploads available as a link
See SLM Leader Guide: The Basics to access more articles for SLM leaders.