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Overview of CAS-Slate Integration

Slate has established standard Source Formats to import CAS data and documents. Using these standard Source Formats will make it easier to establish an automated CAS-Slate integration. The instructions included here will walk you through the steps you need to take to establish this CAS-Slate integration.

For more information, also see the Slate Knowledge Base.

Note: These standard Slate Source Formats were established using data and documents from BusinessCAS, EngineeringCAS, and GradCAS, so are most valuable when used with those environments.

Is the CAS API Right for Me?

The CAS API offers powerful features and is the tool used to develop the standard Slate Source Formats. Before proceeding with establishing a CAS-Slate integration using the CAS API, ask yourself the following questions:

Ask Yourself:

Then:

 

Am I using WebAdMIT to review applications?

If you are, and you want details of that review to be transferred to Slate, the CAS API may not be right for you.

The CAS API delivers data directly from the CAS Applicant Portal, and it doesn’t have access to information recorded only in WebAdMIT. If you are using WebAdMIT’s tools for managing your application review process – features like Local Statuses, Decision Codes, Custom Fields, Assignments, and Scoring – and you want that information to be transferred to Slate, then the CAS API won’t enable you to do that. The CAS API will have all the information for your applications, but it won’t have information that is only in WebAdMIT.

You could opt for a hybrid integration: the CAS API and standard Source Formats for application record creation, and either use WebAdMIT to transfer admissions decisions to Slate or enter them manually. Institutions using Slate often want to perform their entire admissions review process within that software, so the absence of WebAdMIT data from the CAS API is not a hindrance.

Do I have a software developer available for my integration project? If not, the CAS API may not be right for you: the CAS API is a technical tool that doesn’t have a graphic user interface with buttons to push. To interact with the CAS API, you’ll need to use a coding language, a command-line tool, or a third-party tool for interacting with APIs.
Am I trying to transfer AMCAS data to Slate? If you are, the CAS API will not work for you. AMCAS is the CAS for MD applications, and it is not supported by the CAS API at this time.
Does my CAS require me to record Decision Codes in WebAdMIT for reporting purposes? If so, you can still use the CAS API to integrate with your Slate instance, but it will be necessary to separately enter the appropriate Decision Codes in WebAdMIT to comply with the association’s requirements for CAS membership.

 

Overview of Pattern and Tools

CAS data is pushed to Slate as events happen on applications. The CAS API supports event-driven delivery of data and files through subscriptions. A user subscribes to the business events of interest for the populations of interest, specifying the delivery destination and payload format, and the CAS API then listens for those events for those populations and delivers payloads in the format specified to the destination indicated. For Slate, the CAS API delivers data and document payloads to the Slate SFTP, where they are automatically picked up by Source Formats.

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What Needs to be Done

Configure in CAS

Program configuration must be complete, and at least 1 program must be active to begin setting up the CAS API-Slate integration. You can set up the integration against the CAS' Prelaunch (test) environment in advance of deploying it for live applications from the Production environment.

Set up CAS API

Establish the CAS API subscription to enable the delivery of application data and documents to Slate. This documentation contains the established subscription configuration that will work with the standard Source Formats.

Set up Slate

Establish the connection to Slate for the CAS API. Create a service account that has access to the Slate SFTP, and whitelist several IP addresses. Folders need to be added to the Slate SFTP's /incoming/ directory to organize and control the incoming payloads from the CAS API. Adding the standard Source Formats to your instance will add the service account and the baseline incoming directory.

Test

Test the integration to ensure that it's producing records that support the business processes you intend to perform in Slate. Pay special attention to any custom mappings you've added to the standard Source Formats.

Migrate to Production

Once the integration has been approved, establish it in the production environments in both the CAS and Slate. As some users may choose to test with Production CAS data, this step may look different for different projects.

Backup Plan

With the integration up and running, it's important to establish a backup plan in case any element doesn't behave as expected. In short, plan out how to keep critical business processes running in case of any contingency. It’s also important to plan how to recover from unexpected interruptions, and the CAS API's Replay feature will be a useful tool for that operation.

Maintenance

CAS API Maintenance: With each new admissions cycle in the CAS, your CAS API subscriptions automatically roll over into the new cycle. If you are happy with how the integration is performing, you won't need to do any maintenance. If you'd like to change something about your CAS API subscription - file names, directory structure, etc. -  delete your existing subscription and create a new one.

Slate: With each new admissions cycle in the CAS, you'll likely need to update your Source Format mappings. You'll need to consider regular maintenance items, CAS-level changes, program-level changes, and business process changes as you determine how to update your import templates for the new cycle.

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