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Initial Teacher Training In-Year Record 2013/14

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Initial Teacher Training In-Year Record 2013/14

Validation


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Version 1.0 Produced 2013-04-30

HESA has developed extensive quality assurance procedures and runs a range of validation checks against all submissions. The nature of some of these checks changes with the move to XML. This document describes the validation checks and the stages at which they take place.

Validation checkStage
Schema checksINSERT (included in Validation kit)
Business rulesINSERT (included in Validation kit)

Files must be encoded with UTF-8 and schema validation will be in place to ensure this. Institutions must specify the encoding used in their XML files in the first line of the file (i.e. <?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8" ?>) and to ensure that their files are actually saved with that encoding. If XML files are edited with some text editors and the encoding is not specified or does not match the actual file encoding, there may be problems when submitting these files for validation.

INSERT-Stage validation

Validation kit checks

HESA provide downloadable validation kits to assist institutions in the preparation of their data. The validation kits provide some basic structural and 'sense' checks prior to data submission with the aim of reducing the number of errors encountered when submitting data to the live system. With the change in structure for the student data, a new type of the student validation kit is required.

The validation kit will perform two different types of checks:

Schema checks

Checks that the XML is 'well formed' and that it conforms to the rules of the schema definition (the XSD files)

Examples:

  • Every element in the file must have the correct opening and closing tags
  • Elements must be correctly nested
  • Elements must contain the correct type of data (strings, dates, valid entries etc.)
  • Elements must be submitted in the sequence defined in the XSD

Business rules

A set of rules to check the business logic of the submission.

Examples:

  • Consistency between pairs or groups of elements
  • Elements that are compulsory under certain circumstances
  • Range checks

Business rules can only be carried out when all structural errors have been resolved. The individual business rules are listed in the specification document for each element.

Validation kit software

This will follow in the next release of the manual, scheduled for July 2013.

Contact Liaison by email or on 01242 211144.