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Online Selection Description

Time Issues
Overview of Process
Browser Requirements
Information Recorded
Performance Tips
Suggestions prior to Selection
Disclaimers

Beginning this year, Housing Services will run Housing Selection online. This represents a significant change in the way Selection has been run in the past, and holds several benefits for students. The system that will run Selection has been in development conceptually for over a year, and practically for several months. The code has been reviewed by University Web Services, and has undergone rigorous testing by Housing Services.

Time issues

A number of comments received from students so far in the seleciton process have concerned the one-minute interval between groups. To clarify some questions raised about the one-minute interval, repeated here the is information about the one-minute interval it is also posted below in the Processing section):

  • Reasoning for the one minute spacing between groups: When Housing Services conducted Selection auditorium-style in the previous years, we typically scheduled 50-60 groups to make selection in an hour. Typically, we had 5-10 minutes at the end of each hour after all the groups had finished selecting. Selecting on-line, groups will be able to see data about which residences are still available from an hour before their selection, including on an on-demand basis on page 3, thirty minutes before their selection.
  • Groups are not restricted to selecting within the one minute span. Groups may select any time after their appointed selection time. The one minute span simply gives the group a period of time to make the selection before the next group may begin the selection process.
Additionally, group members should know that the selection system keeps one official time, and that is the time on the web server hosting selection. This time may vary from the time on individual students's computers, clocks, etc. Nevertheless, this ensures that all selection participants use the same time as the basis for the timing of their selection.

Overview of Process

  • Stages

    Selection will be divided into stages, each with its own set of deadlines and selection dates:
    • Singles � only single-occupant residence hall rooms will be available for selection.
    • Apartment/Townhouse/Suites � apartments, townhouses, and Copley suites will be available for selection.
    • Residence Halls � residence hall rooms will be available for selection. Also, any 2- or 3-person apartments available for selection will be offered in this stage.

    Check the Housing calendar for dates applicable to each phase.

  • Groups

  • Students will form groups consisting of from 1-4 students, depending on the stage of Selection. Students form groups by giving their Selection Code, found on the Housing-at-a-Glance page, to one of the group members. The group member entering all of the codes on the web during group sign up is known as the Sponsor. The Sponsor is critically important, as it will be the Sponsor who eventually makes the selection for the group. To conserve web resources for everyone selecting, only the Sponsor will be allowed to log on on the day of the Selection and choose a residence for the group. Therefore, the group must make sure that the member chosen as Sponsor will be available to make the choice on the day of Selection.

  • Processing

    • After the groups have formed, Housing Services will process the Selection numbers and times. Groups are weighted, averaging the weight of the members' Selection Points (available on Housing-at-a-Glance).
    • A random number is assigned to each group.
    • A computer sort is done to assign selection numbers. The sort is based on the average selection points of groups, with the highest points sorting first, then on the random numbers assigned to the groups within that point range.
    • Finally, a selection time is assigned to each group based on their selection number. Groups will be spaced one minute apart.
      • Reasoning for the one minute spacing between groups: When Housing Services conducted Selection auditorium-style in the previous years, we typically scheduled 50-60 groups to make selection in an hour. Typically, we had 5-10 minutes at the end of each hour after all the groups had finished selecting. Selecting on-line, groups will be able to see data about which residences are still available from an hour before their selection, including on an on-demand basis on page 3, thirty minutes before their selection. Groups are not restricted to selecting within the one minute span. Groups may select any time after their appointed selection time. The one minute span simply gives the group a period of time to make the selection before the next group may begin the selection process.


  • Selecting


  • To ensure that the web server hosting Selection operates optimally when Sponsors actually make Selection, the Selection process has been divided up into 4 pages. The pages give groups increasing access to data concerning which residences are still available. The pages are programmed with time controls which automatically allow groups to move to the next page at the appointed time.

    • Page 1: [see sample screenshot]
      • up to 60 minutes before selection time
      • no data is displayed here
      • group will see a countdown timer giving the minutes and seconds until they are moved to Page 2
    • Page 2: [see sample screenshot]
      • from 60 to 30 minutes before selection time
      • groups see a "time-delayed" set of data for which residences are still available
      • the data is refreshed every 10 minutes
      • groups can see availability of residence on a per-building basis
      • group will see a countdown timer giving the minutes and seconds until they move to Page 3.
    • Page 3: [see sample screenshot]
      • from 30 minutes prior to selection time
      • groups see residence availability per building on an on-demand basis (every time a query is run, results are pulled directly from database)
      • additionally, on Page 3, groups can see architectural diagrams and feature details (bunkable beds, number of bathrooms, etc) for the available residences. This information is available through the links under the "Details & Diagrams" column.
      • group will see a countdown timer giving the minutes and seconds until they move to Page 4.
    • Page 4: [see sample screenshot]
      • Selection is made from this screen; screen shows a countdown timer showing time until the next group is eligible to begin selecting [note: groups do not need to make a selection within this time frame - groups may make a selection at any point at or after their selection time]; screen shows number of groups who are in the process of selecting. Page 4 gives 3 different options for making selection:
        • Direct Selection: group may select building and type in desired room/apartment number;
        • Browse by Building: group may see a list of residences per building � very similar to what was seen on Pages 2 and 3;
        • Browse by Feature: group may filter on desired features (bunkable beds, number of bathrooms, etc); group sees residences that match filter, along with availability of residences;
      • Residence floor plans and details of physical features of residence are displayed on Page 4 next to each available residence. After group initially indicates residence they are selecting, a confirmation screen is displayed. Groups have 20 seconds to confirm selection of the residence. If the 20 seconds pass, the group is transferred back to Page 4. If the group confirms the residence, the selection is recorded in the Housing Services database. Additionally, other information is recorded (see below). After selection has been confirmed, the group may not go back and change their selection. Each group member will receive a confirmation email containing a link at which they can verify the residence selected.
      • Groups selecting Copley Suites have one last step they must complete. After the suite has been chosen, the group Sponsor must indicate in which room each of the group members will live. This step must be completed for the selection to be valid.


    A group accessing the Selection process will automatically be forwarded to the furthest page they can access at that time. For instance, if a group first accesses the process 25 minutes before their selection time, they will automatically be forwarded to Page 3. If a group accesses the system after their selection time has passed, they will automatically be forwarded to Page 4. A group may select at Page 4 at any time after their appointed Selection time, through 8 am on the Monday following selection.

    Browser Requirements - Updated October 2012
    • If you have any difficulty in finding a browser that meets these specifications, please contact the Housing Office.
    • Frames must be enabled in browser.
    • Browser window must be maximized to that sponsor can see all operable sections of the page.
    • Javascript must be enabled. The time controls that move groups from page to page are written in Javascript. If Javascript is not enabled in the browser, a message displays and the group cannot proceed with the selection process. By the time the selection phases begin, Housing-at-a-Glance will have a link students can use to verify that Javascript is enabled in their browsers, as well as instruction on how to enable it if not.
      Your Javascript is currently:
    • We have tested and verified that the selection process works correctly with the following browsers:
      • Internet Explorer
      • Firefox
      • Opera
        • We recommend against using a Safari browser
    • The selection system is not certified for use on a tablet or smart phone

    Information Recorded

    Along with the selection recorded, the Selection site will record other information:
    • Internet address from which selection was made;
    • The length of time it took for the selection to be made (number of seconds elapsed between time that the group first hit Page 4 until the time at which the selection was completed)
    • A verification code to prevent a fraudulent selection
    • The method (Direct Selection, Browse by Building, Browse by Feature) used by the group to make the selection.
    • Housing Services will use this information to analyze the Selection process.

    Performance Tips

    • Reboot your computer before you access the Selection process. We have endeavored to keep the pages as fast-loading as possible. Still, if your computer's resources have dwindled due to prolonged use, the browser's response time may be slowed a bit.
    • Do not reload pages unnecessarily. Doing so only taxes the web and database servers, affecting the Selection process for everyone.
    • Do not try to jump ahead to a page in the Selection process. Each page is coded with a time-check to make sure the group is eligible to be on that page. If a group attempts to access a page too early, the group is transferred back to the page where they should be.
    • Do not have an extra browser window open. Depending on the browser, doing so might slow the countdown timers a bit.
    • Do not have the Sponsor logged in at more than one computer. No advantage can be gained by this, and performing operations in the Selection process from more than one computer will do nothing more than burden the systems running the Selection process, adding to the time it could take to complete your selection.

    Suggestions prior to Selection

    • View inventory for your current room, available on your Housing-at-a-Glance page, and notify Housing Services if anything needs to be changed.
    • Familiarize yourself with the floor plan formats � while the GIF format can be viewed in any web brower, the DWF format, which allows advanced operation within the drawing, requires a special plugin.
    • Familiarize yourself with the "dummy" Selection system, accessible prior to Selection on Housing-at-a-Glance, which simulates Page 4 of the selection process.
    • Participate in the selection test to help us verify that the process works correctly under load. This is the most valuable way in which you can help verify that the Selection process will work correctly for the entire student body.
    Disclaimers

    The Housing Office has made every possible effort to ensure optimal performance of the on-line Selection system. We have consulted with students during the construction of the system. We have tested the system thoroughly, and, by the time of the first selection phase, will have offered the entire student body an opportunity to participate in a large-scale test of the system.

    Still, there is a chance that technical difficulties might inhibit the performance of the Selection system. On Selection days, the Housing Office, as well as University Information Systems, will continuously monitor the web and database servers running Selection. Nevertheless, students should note the following:
    • The Housing Office will not take any responsibility for inability to access the Selection system caused by malfunction of personal computer, network connection, etc.
    • In the case of a catastrophic technical problem (e.g. the university network goes down, the web or database server goes down), the Housing Office will adjust the selection time of each group not having selected at that time, keeping the same selection order. As a last result, Selection will be rescheduled for a different day.

For On-Campus Housing Inquiries:
Office of Residential Living
100 Harbin HallBox 571117Washington, DC 20057Phone: (202) 687.4560Fax: (202) 687.4590residentialliving@georgetown.edu

For Off-Campus Housing Inquiries:
Office of Neighborhood Life
1300 36th Street NWWashington, DC 20007Phone: (202) 687.5138neighborhoodlife@georgetown.edu