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How to Configure Term Definitions

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TitleHow to Configure Term Definitions
SummaryMMS Online Clients: this article is designed to walk the user through managing the term definitions table in Vision SIS through CR Portals in the Single Sign-On area.
Prior To Implementation

Be an Vision SIS Client.

Requires administrative/staff access to the Vision SIS and School Configuration.

Vision SIS allows you to choose either from the default term definitions (4 Quarter, 6 Term, Trimester, Semester, Year) or customize your own unique term definitions. The term definition scheme allows you to combine different term configurations in the same school. For example, a single school with grades 6 through 12, could set up 4-quarter term definitions for the high school grades and 6-term for the middle school grades. The Vision SIS solution will accommodate almost any combination of term patterns.

Terms are used throughout the scheduling module, class attendance and attendance summaries.

Starting and ending dates and weeks in the Term Definitions are required for class attendance, the Staff Portal Student Schedule Editor, and some state reporting exports. If this information is missing or invalid, these features will not work correctly.

Note:  If your school uses split terms (terms that have more than one start and stop time), you will have to continue to use the Edit Term Definitions found in Generations.


  1. Log in to Vision SIS.
  2. Click HERE to access an article about how to navigate Vision, set favorites, and find help.
  3. Use the menu to navigate. Go to School Configuration > Configuration Jobs > Term Definitions.
  4. An alternative to the menu is to use the search function found in the My Dashboard area (pictured below). In the Search menu items area enter term definitions. Select Term Definitions from the search results. Click GO.

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  1. The following window opens.​​

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  2. Select term template (in red box pictured above). Templates cannot be applied if term codes are already in use. The templates available are 4 Quarter, Semester, Trimester, 6 Term and Year. Select the desired template and click Apply Template. The following window opens:
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  1. Below is the result of applying the 4 Quarter template.
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  1. Number of weeks in school year. The default value is set to 36 weeks with a minimum value of one week and maximum value of 48 weeks. If an adjustment is made to this setting by either increasing or decreasing the number of weeks, click Update School Weeks. The following window opens.
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Click OK. This applies a template that calculates the starting and ending weeks based on the total number of weeks chosen. If the number of weeks cannot be evenly distributed between the template’s terms, all starting and ending weeks will be set to one and manual adjustments will have to be made.
It is important to understand that, while Vision SIS expresses term definitions in spans of weeks, the ‘weeks’ really have nothing to do with calendar weeks. Essentially, you are expressing term definitions in units, with a maximum of 48 units. The goal is simply to be able to express all term patterns so that they correctly indicate which patterns overlap with which. For example, if a school uses quarters for core subjects and trimesters for electives, the weeks assigned in the term definitions will indicate when the different terms overlap. You need not take vacation weeks into consideration when defining term patterns. For example, the typical 4-quarter term setup could just as accurately be described with a total of 4 weeks – YR classes would meet weeks 1-4; S1 classes weeks 1 & 2, etc. You do not have to worry if one term ends and the next term starts in the middle of a week. As long as the ‘week’ assignments correctly indicate term overlaps for scheduling purposes, they don’t need to be accurate with respect to the calendar.


  1. Click +Add to add a new term. A new editable record is added to the list (pictured below). The system will allow for up to 24 terms to be defined. The following information is displayed for each term.
    1. Code is an internal value associated with the term. It is assigned by Vision SIS and cannot be edited.
    2. Display is the term code that appears on reports and edit screens.  The system allows up to 3 characters.
    3. A Description can be entered for the term.  The system allows up to 24 characters.
    4. Grade Plan. Assuming that grade plans have already been defined, choose a grade plan for each term definition. This is required only for grade reporting purposes. The Grade Reporting System expects that each term code has a corresponding grade plan.
    5. Free Time Term. By default, each new term definition will be counted when the system calculates a student's free time. Each Vision SIS Student Scheduling option will schedule students based on their available free time, and each time a course is added to a student's schedule their free time decreases. During the scheduling process there may be times when a school may only want to see a students free time for a specific term. For example, when scheduling full year courses, seeing the free time options for semesters and quarters is not helpful and may be distracting.
    6. Start Week and End Week. Enter the starting and ending week range for each term.
    7. Start Date and End Date. Enter the date that each term begins and ends.
    8. Click Update to save.

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Note: Start Date and Stop Date are required for each term for class attendance and the online student schedule editor. If this information is missing or invalid, these features will not work properly.

  1. Edit. Use this to edit a term. All fields can be edited except for Code.
  2. Delete. Use this to delete a term. If the term is used in Vision SIS, it cannot be deleted.
  3. To clear the Terms Definition table, click Delete All. The following message is displayed:

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Click OK. Only the terms that are not in use will be deleted. The following message is displayed in the top of browser window:

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  1. Update Free Time. Use this operation to calculate the number of students who are free during each period, day, and term. It is essential to keep accurate student free time records when running student schedulers, viewing student free time tallies and lists, and placing study halls. This operation should be run after making any changes to the term definitions
Additional Information

Additional KBAs are available at CR Knowledge Base.
Additional Tech Bytes are available at CR Tech Bytes.

Applies to VersionsCR Portals – Version 1.5 or later
Key WordsSchool operations, configure rooms, add, delete, constraints, Term Definitions, terms for scheduling, term dates, free time



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