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California Community Colleges Education Planning InitiativeHappy New Year! Students are once again beginning to bustle around and we know that means more of your time will be spent assisting them in structuring their pathways to success and completing their educational plans.


That is why we at the California Community Colleges (CCC) Education Planning Initiative (EPI) are so excited for 2015! In fact, we have some pieces to share with you that we hope you’ll be just as excited about as we are.

Education Planning Tool/Degree Audit System RFP

In December, the Education Planning Tool (EPT) and Degree Audit System (DAS) Steering Committee opened a Request for Proposal (RFP) for vendors to begin submitting bids for the project. The deadline for vendors to submit proposals is Jan. 23. We look forward to reviewing their proposals, and seeing the demonstrations of those vendors selected to move forward in the process. More information can be found on our website at under RFP Notice.

UX/UI, Say What?

If you’ve heard us talk about the systemwide Student Services Portal, you may have noticed we frequently use the term UX/UI. Those of you in the technical world know exactly what we mean when we say UX/UI. But for those who do not know what this term means, here is a quick tutorial.

UX = User Experience. User Experience refers to a person’s perceptions and responses resulting from use of a product or service. Basically, UX is how a person feels about their interactions with the product or service, and whether it worked as expected and met their needs.

UI = User Interface. User Interface is what lets a person control a software program or hardware device. According to, the goal of UI is “to allow effective operation and control of the machine from the human perspective, while the machine simultaneously feeds back information that aids the operator’s decision-making processes.”

Now that you have a little more information on UX/UI, here is what EPI is doing in this area. Unicon, our systemwide portal developer, will demonstrate what they have been working on at our next Student Services Portal Steering Committee (SSPSC) meeting. Members will be able to see first-hand the “Yugo” version of our product—that is, a very basic working model—and the requirements that they have been working so hard on developing for the systemwide portal. It is a very exciting time for the group and we are thrilled to have Unicon show off their product thus far.

Pilots, Pilots And More Pilots

This summer, we are looking to kick off our pilot college tour. You may be asking, “What is a pilot college tour?” We will be starting the implementation phase of the EPT/DAS at each of the 10 pilot colleges.

Now, not every college can start first and we can’t load all colleges at once. However, we will be talking with each of our pilot colleges soon to work out a plan of action for their pilot-phase dates. Stay tuned for more information related to the EPT/DAS pilot implementations.

Getting The Word Out

EPI is steadily getting the word out about our initiative and providing updates as we go. The following is a list of conferences that we will be attending in the first quarter:

We are always excited to share what EPI is doing, so if there are conferences or meetings that you feel we should attend, please shoot us an email and we will definitely try and fit it into our schedule.

Robyn Tornay is a project manager for Education Planning and Student Services at the
California Community Colleges Technology Center.