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Sked: A Course Scheduling And Advising Software

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2001 Annual Conference


Albuquerque, New Mexico

Publication Date

June 24, 2001

Start Date

June 24, 2001

End Date

June 27, 2001



Page Count


Page Numbers

6.879.1 - 6.879.21

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Paper Authors

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Raul Mihali

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Damir Vamoser

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Tarek Sobh

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 1520

SKED: A Course Scheduling and Advising Software

Raul Mihali, Tarek Sobh, Damir Vamoser University of Bridgeport

Abstract Each year at the beginning of a new academic semester, most advisors face a very common and particularly tedious and time consuming problem: deciding for each student what course schedule would be ideal for the following semester so that the student would graduate in the fastest possible time and also have his / her specific preferences and prerequisites satisfied. The factors that have to be considered vary from school specific requirements such as course prerequisites, corequisites, spring and fall offerings, to student specific ones, such as transferred credits or the subjective desire to choose or not a given choice. While some advisors might be able to derive reasonable solutions in reasonable amount of time, the process takes most of the advising time. The student will have to "trust" the advisor that the given schedule is the best choice, and in many cases the results will later on prove that the student could have actually graduated faster, or that specific school requirements have been violated or simply that the student’s load and preference could have been balanced better. This paper presents a software application that can completely solve the presented problem. Once the school specific data and requirements have been set, for any specific student information, the application will search and output the schedules that will allow the student to graduate in the fastest number of semesters / quarters possible. Depending on the factors and data considered, the execution time varies from few seconds to few minutes. Currently, we have successfully tested and implemented the application at the University of Bridgeport, CT, USA. 1. Introduction Post secondary education is usually being categorized in fields of studies defined as majors. Each major has its unique class curriculum and requirements, usually preset for years and undergoing limited infrastructure changes. Since usually a student can choose one or very few majors to study, the problem is considered at the major level. The completion of a major usually implies that a student goes through a given number of courses, following department and inter-department requirements, spring/fall restrictions, maximal number of credits per semester as well as any particular requirements that may apply to him/her as a result of an advisor suggestion. Most of the majors would typically require around eight semesters for completion and depending on the number of credits taken at a time the student would be considered freshman, sophomore, junior or senior. The courses that are to be taken are mainly directly relevant to the major, while others are general requirements for all the majors, or particular pre or co requisites for various relevant courses. A prerequisite of a course A is defined as a course that a student needs to have taken already in order to be able to take course A. A course can have none or many pre-requisites and all of them need to be satisfied. A corequisite of a course A is a defined as a course that a student needs to have taken in order to be able to take course A, but can also be taken in the same semester with course A.

Mihali, R., & Vamoser, D., & Sobh, T. (2001, June), Sked: A Course Scheduling And Advising Software Paper presented at 2001 Annual Conference, Albuquerque, New Mexico.

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