University Data Warehouse
The University Data Warehouse is the central authoritative data source for the University. It provides support for reporting, ad hoc data queries, and analytics. The University Data Warehouse is an Oracle-based database that is comprised of data originating in several University systems, including the Student Information System (PeopleSoft), PRISM, and Courseweb (Blackboard Learn). The data is extracted from those systems, optimized for speed and ease of use, and placed into Data Marts. A Data Mart is a subset of the University Data Warehouse, and is oriented toward a particular type of data or function. Currently, Data Marts for student data and financial data are available to the general campus community. Additional columns from existing systems and new systems are regularly added to the Data Marts to meet new reporting and analytics needs.
Access to the University Data Warehouse is available through supported tools (Cognos and Tableau), as well as direct access through a SQL client. Security is governed by a federated authorization process that ensures that individuals have access to the data required to be successful in their jobs. See Requesting Access to Tools and Data Services for information on how to request access.
Frequently Asked Questions
Frequently Asked Questions about the University Data Warehouse
How frequently is the University Data Warehouse updated?
Different tables in the University Data Warehouse are updated at different intervals. Student data is refreshed daily, Monday through Saturday, while General Ledger (GL) data is updated monthly.
How is the University Data Warehouse structured?
The University Data Warehouse uses the star schema method of organizing data. The star schema is the simplest style of Data Mart schema and is the approach most widely used to develop data warehouses and dimensional Data Marts. The star schema consists of one or more fact tables referencing any number of dimension tables.
How can I learn more about the University Data Warehouse?
Visit the BI Practice Group website for videos and documentation on the University Data Warehouse.
How can I request that a new column or data source be added to the University Data Warehouse?
You can request that a new column or an entirely new data source be added to the University Data Warehouse by contacting the 24/7 Help Desk. If you are a member of the BI Practice group, you can view previously requested columns and vote for their inclusion on the BI Practice Group website. Pitt IT uses your votes to prioritize the addition of new columns.
Can I automate data extraction from the University Data Warehouse?
Cognos provides jobs that can be configured to run reports or queries and email the results to a user. Tableau extracts can be scheduled to run to update underlying dashboards. Automated data feeds to school, department, or business unit systems may be possible, subject to security, volume, and use considerations. Contact the 24/7 Help Desk for more information.