Data error causes 169 COA students to lose access to online accounts


By Reggie Ponder
Staff Writer

Thursday, November 30, 2017

A data management error Monday at College of The Albemarle caused 169 students to temporarily lose access to their online accounts as the fall term was nearing completion.

COA officials said they expected the problem to be remedied on Friday.

Lisa Johnson, a spokeswoman for COA, confirmed that on Monday “a file was inadvertently placed in the DataHub User drop space instead of DataHub Enrollment with no error indicated. The file then timed out after removing 169 student accounts from the College of The Albemarle’s Learning Management System.”

Johnson said the error really did not affect students.

“There is no real impact as the students’ account data was never lost, just not accessible until their accounts can be recreated and repopulated,” Johnson said.

A COA student, however, told The Daily Advance this week the data glitch came at an inopportune time for students because the term was drawing to a close and students needed ready access to their accounts in order to complete some work, to check grades or to confirm that work had been completed and received.

Johnson said students should have access to their records on Friday.

“We are working on this process now and it should be completed tomorrow,” she said Thursday afternoon.

Johnson emphasized that “no data was actually lost.” What happened Monday was that the college’s director of distance education programs “inadvertently placed a file in an incorrect location,” Johnson said.

“It was an honest mistake and she has worked diligently with the N.C. Community College System Office to restore all accounts,” she said.

Meanwhile the college is taking action to prevent such a situation from occurring again.

“We are working with the Community College System office and the third party provider to determine what went wrong and how to prevent it happening again,” Johnson said.