We are pleased to inform you that the Extramural Trainee Reporting and Career Tracking (xTRACT) module will feature refreshed screens and new user-friendly features, following a release Monday, October 16, 2023.
All xTRACT screens will move to the new visual appearance being adopted by other eRA modules, as part of a required technology upgrade. The capabilities remain the same.
Highlights of New Changes
The screens will adopt the new standard features being incorporated in eRA modules, such as:
- Apps menu icon — The apps menu, located in the upper left of the new header, shows a dropdown menu of other eRA modules available to the user.
- Buttons — If multiple buttons exist in a row, the primary button will be prominent and the secondary ones will either be outlined or have no border, to help highlight the more frequently used options.
- Header and Footer — An elegant header and footer take up less space, leaving more real estate for you to do your tasks.
- Action items — A three-dot ellipsis icon, when clicked, displays a dropdown menu of action items. This icon replaces the action column. See Figure 2.
- Enhanced Table Tools — A set of tools enhances the ability to work with table data. See Figure 2.
For an explanation of all the new look and feel features, please see Navigating and Using the UI in eRA Modules in the xTRACT online help following the release.
Actions Moved to the RTD ID Column for New Application
When searching for new applications, actions formerly appeared in an Actions menu. Now the Research Training Data ID (RTD ID) is linked to the action that is appropriate for the corresponding status. For an In Progress application, clicking the RTD ID lets you prepare the RTD for a new application. For a Finalized application, clicking the RTD ID takes you to the training tables. A new icon lets you unfinalize a new application, making it once again editable.
Figure 1: Click the RTD ID or the Unfinalize New Application icon to access actions appropriate for the application
Wildcard Search Hints, New Table Tools, and Three-Dot Ellipsis Menu for Actions
Fields that allow wildcard searches now contain example hints that will help you to use the % character to search for matches to entered text.
Tables that contain search results now have new tools to help with viewing and using table data. The Filter Table field lets you quickly see only those records that contain matches to the text you enter in the field. At the upper right of search results are icons to download or print, to specify rows per page, and to navigate through pages of search results.
In some screens that formerly contained an Actions menu, you can now see the actions by clicking the three-dot ellipsis menu; see Figure 2.
Figure 2: New screen showing hints on using wildcards, table tools, and a three-dot ellipsis menu for actions
New Visual Cues to Clarify Actions
Actions you take are concluded with a green success message to give you an immediate visual clue of success. Deleting rows in a table of students is easily accomplished by clicking the row’s trash can icon, shown below.
New screens also make use of badge graphics that stand out from normal text to convey important information. In the screenshot below, you can easily differentiate Post-doc from Pre-doc students by viewing the badge in the Student Type column.
Figure 3: New screen showing success message, trash can icons for deleting, and badges for student type
Resources: see xTRACT online help after the release.