Create Department Accounts and Academic Programs

Learning Objectives 

After completing this unit, you’ll be able to:

  • Create Academic Department Accounts in EDA.
  • Create Academic Programs in EDA.’s Education Data Architecture (EDA) provides a core and common data model that supports the entire K-20 student journey. There are two key things that set EDA apart and make it particularly suited for educational institutions. First, schools of all sorts and sizes will find what they need in EDA, because the architecture is designed specifically for educational institutions. And secondly, because all institutions are unique, the architecture was built with flexibility as a core tenet. As you embark on the process of setting up your institution in EDA, you’ll find you have all the components you require to build, as well as the capability to tailor the architecture to reflect the structure and practices of your particular institution. It’s a one-two punch of awesomeness, really.



This module provides examples of setting up EDA in a higher education setting. If you want to learn more about how to administer Salesforce in a K-12 district or school, we recommend that you check out the K-12 Architecture Kit Administrator Basics module. We linked it for you in the Resources section below.

In this module, you learn the steps to take to set up your higher education Departments and Academic Programs in EDA. Throughout the module, you follow the journey of Salesforce administrator Nina Brown, who is responsible for EDA setup (and so much more) at Cloudy College. We have learned from the experiences of this fictional admin in other EDA modules, so say hello, or nice to see you again, to this admin champ.

  • Nina Brown, Salesforce Administrator at Cloudy College. Cloudy College is a private, liberal arts college in the Northwest United States. Founded in 1964, Cloudy College recently enrolled more than 3,800 students for their fall semester.

    Nina has seven years of experience in Salesforce administration in higher ed and has been the Salesforce admin at Cloudy College for the past four years. She leads the ongoing development and configuration of Cloudy’s Salesforce deployment. She executes the day-to-day configuration, support, maintenance, and improvement of Salesforce at Cloudy and ensures that it works seamlessly across campus. Nina acts as the primary contact and subject matter expert on the critical issues and processes of CRM at the college and she has a strong reputation of improving the processes and adoption of the platform across campus.

The specific requirements of Nina’s institution may be different from your institution, so keep in mind that all schools have unique needs, and the scenarios in this module are just a few examples of EDA in action. Never fear if something you see Nina implement at Cloudy doesn’t apply to you—the examples here are representative of the possibilities of EDA, not the limits of what’s possible.

Want to Get Hands-On with EDA Setup?

In this module, we show you the steps to set up your campus in EDA. There aren’t any hands-on challenges in this module, but if you want to practice and try out the steps, you can register for a free EDA trial with sample data (a Trailhead Playground doesn’t have EDA).

Already have an active EDA trial installed from getting hands-on in previous EDA modules? Great! You can use that same trial org to practice EDA setup in this module.

Here’s how to get the free trial edition now.

  1. Click here to open the Education Data Architecture (EDA) Trial Page.
  2. Fill out the form completely.
    1. For Email, enter an active email address that’s unknown to Salesforce.  The email address you provide becomes the username in this new trial org. Usernames must be globally unique across all instances of Salesforce, so you must use an email account that is unknown to Salesforce or your installation won’t work.
  3. After you fill out the form, click Submit. A confirmation message appears.
  4. When you receive the activation email (this might take a few minutes), open it and click Verify Account.
  5. Complete your registration by setting your password and challenge question. Tip: Write down your username, password, and login URL for easy access later.


Don’t forget to complete the Power of Us application at some point during your 30-day trial period. Once your application has been approved, your trial version converts to a permanent Salesforce org. If you don’t complete your Power of Us application within 30 days, you lose access to your trial org.

Departments and Academic Programs

The first step in EDA setup is to create Academic Departments and Academic Programs. In EDA, departments and programs are both Account record types, yet they are designed for different purposes: 

  • An academic department in EDA represents an academic department or college of study. Depending on the structure and terminology at your institution, you might create a department account for the English Department, the School of Nursing, or the College of Engineering.
  • An academic program in EDA represents a program of study associated with a department. Again, depending on the programs of study offered at your school, you may create academic programs such as B.A. English, M.S. Nursing, or Ph.D. Civil Engineering, to name a few.

Students at Cloudy College can pursue a Bachelor’s degree in Biology, which is a program offered by the Science Department. When Nina completed EDA setup for Cloudy College she created an academic department account for the Science Department and an academic program account for B.S. Biology. Keep reading to see the steps Nina followed to create these accounts.

An important note: the step-by-step instructions for setup provided in this module build upon each other. Keep in mind that if you would like to try any of the steps in future units, you need to complete the steps outlined in this unit in your trial org, in order to build on them in subsequent units.

Create an Academic Department Account

Let’s create a new Academic Department account.

  1. In EDA, select the Accounts tab and click New.
  2. Select the University Department record type and click Next.

    Select University Department as the record type and then click New.
  3. Fill in the details for the account. For this example, the Account name is Science Department.
  4. Click Save.

Create an Academic Program

Now, let’s create a new academic program account.

  1. In EDA, select the Accounts tab and click New.
  2. Select the Academic Program record type and click Next.
  3. Enter a name for the academic program. For this example, the academic program name is B.S. Biology.
  4. Fill in the Parent Account. For this example, the parent account is Science Department.
  5. Fill in the details for the program, and click Save.

Your screen looks something like this:

Account record for New Account: Academic Program, B.S. Biology, with the academic program and academic department highlighted.

Well done! Creating academic departments and academic programs is a major milestone in the journey to set up a campus in EDA. On to the next unit, where we learn about courses, terms and course offerings.

Before we go, another gentle reminder that if you want to seamlessly follow along with the step-by-step instructions in the rest of the module, you need to create the department and academic program records introduced in this unit in your trial org.


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