NameCoach Commencement Tool


In this article

NameCoach is a resource through which members of the university community can provide an oral pronunciation of their name, as well as phonetic spelling. This can support commencement activities by:

  1. Providing a list of students with phonetic name pronunciations.
  2. Providing access to the student voice recordings of their names.

Using this tool requires the following steps which will be detailed in this document.

  1. Request a NameCoach page to be managed by a designated administrator.
  2. Download a spreadsheet and add or import required student information.
  3. Upload the spreadsheet and send a request to students to voice record their names.
  4. Integrate as you see fit into your process for preparing to announce student names during commencement services.

Staff can request a NameCoach administration page with which to solicit this pronunciation information from students who will participate in their college or department commencement activities.

Request a NameCoach page

To request a NameCoach page, submit a request to itsupport@umd.edu. The request should include the following information:

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Set up a NameCoach page for administrators

Once the request for NameCoach administration has been processed, the person identified as the administrator will receive an email with the subject NameCoach: Admin invitation from no-reply@name-coach.com. The email provides a link to the NameCoach Login page.
NOTE: The first time you click on this link in the email you will automatically have access to the NameCoach dashboard. If you logout and must then access the NameCoach dashboard again, you will need to login with your university email address (directoryid@umd.edu) and request a password for ongoing access by selecting the Forgot Password? link.

  1. Click the Go button.

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  2. Click the Request Names/Your Link link.

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  3. Scroll down on the resulting page and click on the Upload Excel/CSV button.
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  4. This will bring you to another web page from which you can click on the Download a sample spreadsheet option. Administrators will populate the spreadsheets with the following details about each student who will participate in the Commencement activities.
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    • Enter or import student university email addresses, first name and last name.
    • The middle name field is optional. Remove the auto provisioned institution_id column (required). The custom_phonetic_spelling column is optional.
    • Save the completed spreadsheets as a .xls,.xlsx, or .csv file
      NOTE: Do not change its name from the filename downloaded from NameCoach.

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Import the student name list and notify students

Some students on your list will be unknown to NameCoach and will be prompted to create a pronunciation of their first and last name. Other students may have already used the NameCoach feature in ELMS to provide this pronunciation information.  Each cohort will be sent a separate message from NameCoach inviting them to provide or update their pronunciation information. You will be able to customize messaging to these students using the steps that follow.

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Return to NameCoach

  1. Return to NameCoach at cloud.name-coach.com.
  2. Login with your university email address and password. (If you have not yet created a password, click on the Forgot Password? link and NameCoach will email you a password to use in conjunction with your directory email address.)
  3. If the Dashboard is not immediately visible when you login to NameCoach, click on the Dashboard link in the menu at the top of the screen. Click on the Go button on the NameCoach Dashboard.

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Inviting students already known to NameCoach

As noted some students may have already provided preferred pronunciations using the NameCoach feature within ELMS-Canvas. See Managing Your Online Persona in ELMS-Canvas. These pronunciations will be synced automatically with the department or college Name Page once the names from the spreadsheet are imported into the NameCoach admin dashboard.

The notification for these students can be customized. After logging into NameCoach in step 3 above:

  1. Click on the Admin link in the NameCoach menu at the top of the screen.
  2. Click on the Preferences link then click on the Notification link. You can provide minimal customization to the Email body. However, the following fields and values must not be changed:first_name, event_title, and the click here link.
  3. Click on the Save preferences button.

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Inviting new NameCoach students

  1. Click on Request names/Your Link in the Namepage dashboard and then scroll to Upload Excel/CSV file button again.
  2. Click on the Import and Notify button.
  3. Choose the xlsx file from your local computer (yourdepartmentname.xlsx). A Users invitation window pops up for customization. This is an invitation that will be sent to students who have never provided NameCoach pronunciation. 
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  4. Customize the Subject field to your preference (e.g., NameCoach name registration for Commencement).
    • You can provide minimal customization to the Email body. However, the following fields and values must not be changed: first_name, event_title, and Record your name link. 
    • We recommend that you delete the paragraph that references previous NameCoach registration on the part of the student.
  5. Click on the Import and send invites button to merge spreadsheet data with the form letter. The invitation will be sent immediately to the email address identified for each student.
  6. Students will receive the invitation from a NameCoach email address. Colleges and departments may wish to let students know ahead of time that they will receive this message.

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Tracking student pronunciation submissions

NameCoach admins can return to the NameCoach Dashboard to track student recordings from the Recorded Names tab and identify and remind students who have not provided a recording from the Unrecorded Names tab. 

Recorded names panel

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Unrecorded names panel

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NameCoach administrators can prompt students whose names remain in the Unrecorded Names panel by clicking in the Select checkbox next to a student’s name and then clicking on the Email icon in the Actions area.

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Adding and deleting participants

If you need to add participants to the Name Page after the initial spreadsheet has been uploaded, you can import a revised version of your original spreadsheet. Add the new participants as new rows on the initial spreadsheet. Then follow steps under Import Student Name List and Notify Student found above. Taking this action does not send out invitations to those participants who were previously uploaded and invited. These newly added students will receive the invitation email relevant to their recording status in NameCoach.

To delete a participant from either the Recorded Names or Unrecorded Names tabs, click on the checkbox next to the student’s name and then click on the Trashcan icon in the Actions area. You will be asked to confirm your instruction to delete the participant. Deleted participants will be visible under the Deleted Entries link through which they can be restored to the page from which they were deleted.

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