A multi-phase approach to university course timetabling

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Zibran, Minhaz Fahim
University of Lethbridge. Faculty of Arts and Science
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Lethbridge, Alta. : University of Lethbridge, Faculty of Arts and Science, 2007
Course timetabling is a well known constraint satisfaction optimization (CSOP) problem, which needs to be solved in educational institutions regularly. Unfortunately, this course timetabling problem is known to be NP-complete [7, 39]. This M.Sc. thesis presents a multi-phase approach to solve the university level course timetabling problem. We decompose the problem into several sub-problems with reduced complexity, which are solved in separate phases. In phase-1a we assign lectures to professors, phase-1b assigns labs and tutorials to academic assistances and graduate assistants. Phase-2 assigns each lecture to one of the two day-sequences (Monday-Wednesday-Friday or Tuesday-Thursday). In Phase-3, lectures of each single day-sequence are then assigned to time-slots. Finally, in phase-4, labs and tutorials are assigned to days and time-slots. This decomposition allows the use of different techniques as appropriate to solve different phases. Currently different phases are solved using constraint programming and integer linear programming. The multi-phase architecture with the graphical user interface allows users to customize constraints as well as to generate new solutions that may incorporate partial solutions from previously generated feasible solutions.
ix, 117 leaves ; 29 cm
Constraint programming (Computer Science) , Computer scheduling , Scheduling -- Computer programs , Dissertations, Academic