SA Tips and Tricks

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SA Tips and Tricks

SA/PeopleSoft and Web Browsers

SA/PeopleSoft is a browser-based program that uses the Internet to access data stored on University servers, and present that data in ways that are helpful to end users in their daily routine. PeopleSoft relies on a tool such as an Internet browser and it presents itself as an easy to use application. However, we must remember it is a complex program dealing with large databases and complicated relationships between vast amounts of information.  There are certain guidelines, tips, and tricks which will help you to get the most out of the system.

Is there a preferred browser for working in SA/PeopleSoft?

When working in a PC environment Internet Explorer is the preferred browser.  When working on a MAC, we recommend you use Firefox/Mozilla

Why would I "clear my browser cache," and how do I do that?

When working on the Internet, your browser keeps a copy of the pages you visit (in cache) so that the next time you visit them, the browser can load them to your computer in less time.

You should clear your cache regularly for two reasons. First, having a page in cache can sometimes cause a conflict with a page that you are trying to view. (If you suspect this may be the case, go into your browser options, clear the cache, close the browser, then re-open the browser and try again to view the page.) Secondly, having a large number of files in your cache will slow down your browser and take up space on your hard drive. Click here to view the step-by-step guide for help in clearing your cache.

Does SA/PeopleSoft have any special requirements regarding pop-up windows?

PeopleSoft often uses pop-up windows to display information you request. If your browser is set to block pop-up windows then PeopleSoft will not work properly. If you click on a button or a link and nothing happens, you probably need to adjust your pop-up blocker settings. It is possible to leave your pop-up blocker turned on (to protect you from intrusions from other websites), while adjusting it so that pop-up windows open properly when you are in PeopleSoft.

Click here to view the step-by-step guide on Allowing Pop-up Windows in PeopleSoft for help adjusting your pop-up settings.

How do I download PeopleSoft data into an Excel spreadsheet?

SA/PeopleSoft often displays various types of data in a table format.  If you see a  "Download" icon in the header area of the table; you can download this table into a 'full" version of Microsoft's Excel. Click here to view the step-by-step guide on Downloading SA Data to Excel.

Do I care whether the page I open in Internet Explorer "contains both secure and non-secure items"?

If you are using Internet Explorer to access PeopleSoft, you may receive a security warning asking whether you want to display nonsecure items. This is a nuisance and does not represent a security threat---the page you are trying to view is a secure page. There are several options for dealing with this warning. Click here to view the step-by-step guide on Allowing Secure and Non-Secure Items for specific information about each option.

How do I get the Schedule of Classes or any other link in myUMBC to open in a new window?

To open any link in MyUMBC in a new window:

1)   Hold down the Ctrl key.

2)   Click the hyperlinkthat you want to open in a new window. 

What can I do to minimize the number of times I need to enter a student's CampusID or Peoplesoft EmplID?

 Once you have located the student's Campus ID or EmplID, copy it into the clipboard so you can reuse it using the paste function.

To copy: highlight the ID, right mouse click and select Copy.  OR from the browser menu options, select Edit > Copy.

To paste: click in the field you wish to place the ID, right mouse click and select Paste OR from the browser menu options, select Edit > Paste. 

Do I need any special software to access SA when I'm off campus? (And do I need to use a VPN?)

Since SA/PeopleSoft is a web-based system, you do not need any special software to access SA/PeopleSoft when you are off campus. You can access the system from any computer that is connected to the Internet---and you do not need to use a VPN.  Just login to myUMBC and you will be able to access the system.

Do I have to sign out of one part of PeopleSoft (Financials or Human Resources, for instance) in order to work in another other part of the program?


What should I do when I want to stay in one part of the program (Financials, for instance) but I want to open a second browser window?

Open a second browser window.

What do I need to know about navigating within SA?

When performing functions like viewing teaching schedules or granting permissions in which you launch SA via the myUMBC website, always use the  link in the header area or the navigation hyperlinks within the page. 

Try not to use the "back" button in the browser header.  If you use the Back button, you may receive errors within the PeopleSoft application.

If you enter SA via the Administrative Systems > Student Administration to perform administrative functions for Scheduling or other tasks, you navigate using the menus on the left side of the screen or using the alternate menus that appear in a pictorial format.

When I am inside a page in SA, how do I get back to myUMBC?

Always use the "Back to myUMBC" link in the header area to return to myUMBC.

How do I get the "printer-friendly" pages to print correctly?

To print the "printer-friendly" versions of the Student Schedule or other SA informational click here to download the instructions.

How can I search for student information?

There are various search tools that allow you to determine how you want the program to perform a search. 

These tools include:
Drop Down menu:  The default is to search by values that "begin with" the value that you enter.  TIP: Use "Contains" when you are unsure of the exact value
Value field: Enter the value to search for in this field. 

You can choose to:     

  • Leave the field blank = search for all values in the field
  • Enter a complete value = search for an exact value that is entered, i.e., Last name of Smith (how the data is searched is dependent upon the drop down selection for that field.)
  • Enter a partial value = enter just what you know about the value in a field; used when you don't know the complete value for a field (i.e. Last name = Sm)* Wildcards - can be used in your search.  * = any character Ex: sm*   OR  % =  match zero or more characters  Ex: sm%%%ing