Timetabling Process Reviews


Timetabling is a key part of the student experience


The business of timetabling is a year-round activity, from curriculum planning and data collection, through scheduling and refinement, with one academic year’s process often running into the start of the next academic year’s work. Its impact is wide-reaching, encompassing every taught student, and every academic with teaching responsibilities, plus several supporting departments ranging from Student Registry through to Estates and Facilities. Timetable processes must therefore be robust enough to manage the significant levels of complex data, cope with several layers of sub-processes, and maintain the overall focus of the timetable.


Where the priorities for the timetable are not clearly defined and encased within a robust scheduling policy, the potential for conflict and inconsistency of approach will threaten to derail the timetabling process, through the creation of delays, duplication of work, and perhaps most damagingly of all, the undermining of the credibility of the Timetabling Office.


What does a process review encompass?


A process review will focus on the key stakeholders within the process, to understand their responsibilities and requirements. Our approach is thorough and inclusive to allow us to gain an understanding of the good practice inherent within current processes, and to view any factors which are hindering successful process management.


Through careful analysis of timetable, space and curriculum data we will build up an understanding of how conflicting demands and priorities exist within timetable creation. Process mapping will help the institution to understand how to balance these demands within an efficient process which caters for all the institution’s timetable requirements. Our methodology is innovative and challenges conventional wisdom about space utilisation. We have worked with a wide variety of institutions to look at the issues of teaching space capacity and the effect of growth on demand for teaching space.


A review of current policy and systems appraisal will determine how policy and technology can be aligned to best support the process.

Our experience within the sector can help institutions to identify potential improvements within their processes, and the mechanisms for making those improvements


By taking a consultative and inclusive approach, we will gain an understanding of where the current process offers opportunities for improvement. By devising innovative and thoughtful solutions, and discussing the best methods of implementing those solutions, the institution can concentrate its efforts within process improvement.


What are the benefits of a Timetabling Process Review?


A process review can bring together the parties involved in timetabling with the common goal of breaking down the process into its detailed parts, giving a voice to those areas who may be seen as silent partners, raising awareness and understanding of timetabling across the institution, and encouraging staff to take ownership and responsibility for their part within the timetabling process.

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