Testing Your Decision Release Process
  • 02 Apr 2024
  • 5 minute read
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Testing Your Decision Release Process

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  • PDF

Article Summary

There are many components to the decision release process. Be sure to test each step for each decision combination to ensure a smooth and successful decision release.

 Best Practice

Start by testing the entire decision release process for an Admit decision. This decision code has many important post-decision rules that must work properly before official decisions are released.

Preparing the Test Account

To thoroughly test the applicant experience, view the applicant status page by logging in with an incognito window using an account with the Test Record tag. The option to open an incognito window from your browser is an easy way to experience Slate as a "real" applicant. To open a new incognito window in the Chrome browser, select the three dots in the upper-right corner of the browser window, then choose New incognito window (or press Ctrl+Shift+N). 

  1. Select the Account link on the Profile tab of your test record. Establish login credentials for your test account. Make sure that you provide an email address that you can access.

  2. Select Reset to send the PIN and reset password link to the email address provided.

  3. Open the Password Reset communication from your test account's email. Open the link in an incognito window to establish a new password for your test account. 

  4. Select the Create Application link on the Profile tab of your test record. Select the Round for which you will be releasing decisions, and mark the application as submitted. 

  5. Use the New Decision link on the Decisions table of your test record's application tab to manually add a released decision. 

    • Code: Select a decision code.

    • Reason: Select a decision reason (if used).

    • Letter: Assign the proper letter for the decision.

    • Confirmed: Select to confirm the decision.

    • Released: Select to release the decision. Keep the date and time as the current date.

    Skip the remaining settings at this time.

Testing the Applicant Experience

To test the applicant experience:

  1. Open an incognito window in your browser and use the credentials you established for your test account to access the applicant status page. The applicant status page displays the Status Update message. This box appears when a new decision has been released. 

  2. Select the View Update link to view the decision letter .

  3. Confirm that the correct letter appears as expected for the test record. 

  4. Confirm that a link to the reply form appears on the status page. The Reply Form rule adds this item to the applicant status page for applicants who have been admitted. Ensure that the link appears only after you view the letter if the Admit decision code is configured to hide this form link initially. ( Remember that once a decision is confirmed, the rules must run first to add the Reply Form to the person's checklist. In a testing scenario, when applications are confirmed, released, and viewed in one session, you may want to force-execute the rules for the reply form to show on the status page).

  5. Select the Reply to Offer of Admission form link, fill out the form, and submit your reply.

    If the reply form is configured to be effective several days after the decision was released (or on a static date), the form link on the applicant status page will not appear until the specified date. To continue with testing, you can override the effective date for your test record and provide an effective date in the past.  

    Effective dates and expiration dates are reflected in the administrative checklist view. Select the Edit link for the checklist item to confirm these settings or to override the effective date.

  6. Confirm that the Enrollment Deposit payment due activity is added to the status page. The Enrollment Deposit rule adds this payment item to the status page for applicants who accept your offer of admission through the reply form. (If the Submit Payment link does not appear next to the Enrollment Deposit activity, you may need to revisit your rule configuration settings.)

  7. Select the New Activity link on the person's application tab to add a new Payment Received or Waived activity to the Activities table. Provide payment details:

    • User (optional): Select a user associated with the payment activity.

    • Code: Select Payment.

    • Payment Type: Select Payment Received or Payment Waived.

    • Payment Amount: Provide the amount of your enrollment deposit.

    • Payment Account: Select the Enrollment Deposit account.

    Matriculating students will use the link on their applicant status page to pay the enrollment deposit through your payment gateway. Adding a "payment received" activity on the person record administratively is an effective way to test your post-enrollment decision rules without needing to make an actual payment. 

  8. Test each combination of decisions and responses before you release your decisions. It is helpful to test the decision release process for each decision combination using the same test record. 

  9. When finished with testing the process for one decision combination, delete that application from your test record. Select the Edit Application Details link on the application tab, and in the dialog, select Delete to delete this application for the test record. 

  10. When you have finished testing all decision combinations and decision rules, remove the Test Record filter from your post-decision checklist and reply form rules. Do this before releasing decisions so that real applicants will receive these checklist items. 

 Best Practice: Don’t ruin the surprise! 🥳

Don't ruin the surprise! Remember that you can hide the link to the reply form before an applicant has viewed their admission letter by updating the Decision Code to Hide Forms - Hide forms if not yet viewed.


Additionally, you may want to hide the main checklist for applicants with a particular released decision (such as Deny).

To update these settings, configure the decision codes in the Database tool. 


Make a list or spreadsheet of each decision combination you must test to mark them as complete when you are satisfied with your testing results.

Testing the Administrative Experience

  1. When an applicant views their decision letter on the status page, the Notification selection on the decision is updated to indicate that the student has received the decision. Additionally, the decision status icon updates to show all green bars, indicating that the applicant viewed the decision. (If you did not view the decision from an incognito window, you may manually mark the decision as received by accessing the decision from the application tab and updating the Notification to indicate that the applicant has received the decision.)
    Note: A decision will not be marked as received if you administratively impersonate an applicant via the Status Page and view the letter.

  2. The Reply to Offer of Admission form is added to the record's checklist. 

  3. When the reply form is submitted, the checklist updates to indicate the form has been received.

  4. A new decision for Deposit Pending is added to the Decisions table on the person record based on the Deposit Pending rule. 

  5. New activities are added to the Activities table on the record's application tab:

    • Payment: A Payment Due activity is added based on the Enrollment Deposit rule.

    • Source: A Source activity is added when the applicant submits the reply form. 

  6. A new Deposit Paid decision code appears on the Decisions table based on the Deposit Received rule. ( It is recommended to test the payment gateway at least once. To make a $1.00 test payment, waive all but $1.00 of your enrollment deposit. Then select the Submit Payment link on the applicant status page to pay through your payment gateway.)

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