Timetabling – Teaching Space Modelling (TSAR™)

The Teaching Space Analysis Model (TSAR™) is an Excel-based tool which helps Timetablers and Space Managers to:

  • Combine room, timetable, student number and utilisation data to create meaningful management information about general purpose teaching and learning spaces;

  • Adjust current room configurations to better fit existing teaching patterns and activities;

  • Model future room requirements taking complex parameters into account.


TSAR™ is for use when the technical detail of changes to teaching space needs to be evaluated alongside the needs of the current timetable. 

Teaching Space Capacity is driven by the intrinsic and mathematical relationships at the heart of the curriculum


For capacity planning purposes, it is vital to recognise that the timetable and observable utilisation levels are a product of curriculum and resourcing decisions taken long before timetabling takes place.


Observed utilisation levels differ from planned utilisation targets. The primary difference is often driven by either the complex effect of constraints or the legacy of decisions taken many years ago.

The TSAR™ can help to illuminate many of the constraints which impact disproportionately on timetable scheduling.


The TSAR™ analyses the full range of timetable data


Pressure points and peak loads can be determined, and constraints which create the peak demand for space can be identified.   


The TSAR™ can help to understand the constraints within the timetable, and how those constraints restrict the efficient use of space. Through a careful focus on the data, the TSAR™ will also help to identify areas within the University which may help to drive process improvement.


A critical part of the analysis is scenario planning and forecasting demand


The TSAR™ is sensitive to changes within student numbers, the inclusion or exclusion of specific rooms, the profile of the curriculum, and the effectiveness of the timetabling process.


The TSAR™ can provide insightful management information to identify how capacity is being eroded and efficient utilisation is undermined. This information can focus discussion onto viable and effective solutions, enabling real impact on the curriculum and timetable, as well as informing decision-making relating to future space management.

The TSAR™ can be deployed in three different ways:

  • To provide an analytical service, coordinating a package of tasks and outputs into a digestible report. Our reporting is rigourous, without overloading audiences with extraneous detail. The focus of the outputs is discussed in detail with the client.

  • A bespoke model of the TSAR™, and associated training, can be provided. The purpose and function of the model are agreed, before the model is built. The client is then entirely self-sufficient in working with the model.

  • We can provide a hybrid of the two approaches described above, by initially providing the analytical service, before training staff within the institution to run the model.


Each model of the TSAR™ is different, and calibration always includes building up a good understanding of the institution so that the settings in the model are appropriate. Agreement of a detailed scope of service is the first step to getting the best out of the TSAR™.

Teaching Space Modelling : TSAR

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