Hierarchy Overview

What is the hierarchy?

The Hierarchy is the structure and organisation of your reading lists tenancy. It is made up of nodes, which the term applied to each point on the hierarchy, and there are no limits to the number of nodes in your hierarchy. 

A hierarchy node is made up of:

  • Type - A list of valid node types can be found here.
  • Name (eg. Library and Information Management)
  • Code (eg. LIM101)
  • Description (optional)
  • Anticipated Student Numbers (optional)

What does the hierarchy do?

The hierarchy in Talis Aspire Reading Lists plays an important part in lots of different elements of the system and process.

  • Assists in searching and discoverability (ie. browsing) of reading lists
  • Enables Devolved entitlements and scoped constraints (eg. list publisher role) more information on devolved entitlements and constraints here.
  • Streamlines requesting digitisations by automatically populating the course details portion of the request form
  • Supports the LTI searching between your Learning Management System (aka. VLE) and Talis Aspire
  • Allows for reporting on higher levels of the hierarchy (eg. units linked to schools) - this is dependant on the structure of your hierarchy.

How is the hierarchy structured?

There are many ways you can structure your hierarchy in Talis Aspire, which means that you can structure it to suit the organisation of your university.

There is only one required element to your hierarchy and that is an institution node. This is automatically created when your reading lists tenancy is created and will default to the name of your University. The Institution node can't be deleted, however, you can update its name and description).

Below the Institutional node you can choose to have a:

  • Multi-level hierarchy (recommended) - where there are several levels to your hierarchy (eg. Institution > Faculty > School > Unit > reading lists)
  • Flat hierarchy - where the level below the Institutional node is the node to which you attach your reading lists. (eg. Institution > Module > reading lists)

There are many node types available to describe each level of your hierarchy. For quick reference, here is a link to the list of valid hierarchy node types.

Where to get the information for your hierarchy

In general, universities gather the data for their hierarchy from their Learning Management System or Student registry. This should be wherever you deem the modules or unit information to be a true reflection of your current offerings. As part of implementing Talis Aspire, you will be guided through this process. If your hierarchy is already established, or you're reviewing your hierarchy structure, please feel free to raise a support ticket to discuss with a Talis Support Consultant.

How to update your hierarchy

There are two ways to update your hierarchy in Talis Aspire (NOTE: You will need the appropriate permissions in order to update the hierarchy):

1. Manual update process

Where you have only a handful of updates to make, we would recommend using the manual process for updating your hierarchy. A step-by-step guide is available on how to edit nodes manually.

2. Bulk update process

If you have several hierarchy nodes to update, you may find it more efficient to use the bulk hierarchy update process. The bulk update process involves creating and uploading spreadsheet(s) into your reading lists and can be used to add, delete, move and update individual nodes. Information on how to create this file is described in the following support article: Hierarchy data format support article.

Once you have your hierarchy file(s) ready, the full upload process is available in our Hierarchy - upload full process support article.

Ways to review your hierarchy

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