The University of Iowa

Background

Efficient utilization of campus-wide instructional space is critical to meet the needs of growing student enrollments.  Scheduling strategies are being implemented by the Office of the Provost to increase collaboration, better match teaching pedagogy with instructional space, improve campus-wide academic facility utilization, and optimize usage of instructional spaces across campus through centralization.  Consistent with the recommendations of Ad Astra Information Systems resulting from TIER and guided by the Postsecondary Education Facilities Inventory and Classification Manual (FICM), the University of Iowa’s official inventory of campus instructional spaces was audited for modification effective July 1, 2017, which coincides with curriculum planning for Summer 2018.

Initiative Definitions

Classroom

Instructional space classified as 110 defined within the FICM.

University Classroom

Instructional space formerly known as a General Assignment Classroom or previously assigned departmental classroom now managed by the Office of the Registrar, Classroom Scheduling.

Programmed Classroom

Instructional space formerly assigned to departments now co-managed with Classroom Scheduling.  These spaces merge into the Classroom Scheduling space inventory.

Specialty Space

All instructional spaces formerly known as Non-General Assignment Classrooms and classified as any room type category other than “Classroom” per the FICM. 

Classroom Scheduling

A sub-unit of the Office of the Registrar, a division of the Office of the Provost, with oversight of classroom scheduling operations and practices.

Special Event Scheduling

Coordination of any activity not associated with an actual class session identified on the student information system, MyUI.

Shared Scheduling/Management

  • University Classroom – Section scheduling resides under the control of Classroom Scheduling following home building priorities.  Special event scheduling occurs collaboratively between Classroom Scheduling and the college/department during predefined scheduling windows within Ad Astra software.
  • Programmed Classroom – Section scheduling resides under the control of the college/department during the initial scheduling process.  Special event scheduling occurs collaboratively between Classroom Scheduling and the college/department on an as needed basis.

Ad Astra

Computerized scheduling application used by Classroom Scheduling for bulk scheduling operations of sections and events utilizing best fit parameters [preferences/seat fill].

University Classroom Policies and Procedures

Policy Outline

All instructional space officially classified as Classroom will reside under the scheduling control and management of Classroom Scheduling.  In some circumstances, shared scheduling/management may occur with colleges/departments.

University Classroom

Will reside under scheduling control and management of Classroom Scheduling for course offerings and special event scheduling.  Further within this category are the merged departmental classrooms.  Classroom Scheduling will provide University Classroom assignments; however, college/departmental input will guide the assignment process.  Additionally, in some cases, upon completion of the initial classroom scheduling window, shared special event scheduling can commence collaboratively between Classroom Scheduling and the college/departmental affiliated office representatives until the end of the session, excluding final examination week.

Programmed Classroom

Will reside under scheduling control and management of the college/departmental affiliated office during the initial scheduling process for course offerings programming.  On occasion, a Programmed Classroom will be needed to satisfy seating demand unable to be fulfilled by the University Classroom inventory.  Upon completion of the initial classroom scheduling window, shared special event scheduling commences collaboratively between Classroom Scheduling and the college/departmental affiliated office representatives as needed.

All instructional space officially classified as any room type other than “Classroom” will remain under the scheduling control and management of the Academic Department with oversight by the College. 

Specialty Space

Will reside under the scheduling control of the colleges/departments.  These spaces include but are not limited to laboratories, studios, practice rooms, meeting rooms, and conference rooms.  Specialty spaces serve a variety of departmental activities and course programming.

Operational Practices for Instructional Spaces

University Classrooms

Scheduled and managed with rules and regulations to maximize University resources.  All classrooms will adhere to all Registrar and college/departmental rules and regulations unless an approved exception exists from the Office of the Provost or Classroom Scheduling.  Policies exist regarding, but not limited to, off-grid scheduling, non-standard class time, on-grid event scheduling, and seat fill requirements.

  • Colleges/departments continue to retain initial priority scheduling rights.  Any special scheduling considerations must be communicated to Classroom Scheduling by the close date of the MAUI Planner for the respective session.
  • Classroom Scheduling retains administrative authority to schedule classrooms around the prior prioritized assignments coordinated with the colleges/departments to maximize efficient use of University instructional resources and to ensure space assignment is fulfilled across all approved course offerings.
  • Use of Ad Astra is required across all University Classrooms to ensure scheduling accuracy and enhanced reporting and statistics.  If the college/department does not desire shared scheduling, Classroom Scheduling will schedule and manage the instructional space for the academic department.

Programmed Classrooms

Different from traditional University Classrooms due to the unique scheduling needs within the undergraduate or graduate/professional schools that warrant a different operational process. 

  • Colleges/departments continue to retain initial priority scheduling rights to the classrooms they are assigned in this category.  Input of initial room assignments will be made directly into MAUI Planner by the college/departmental staff.  In coordination with colleges/departments, Classroom Scheduling may schedule Programmed Classroom spaces around pre-programmed priorities.
  • At the close of the initial scheduling window, Programmed Classroom spaces revert to shared scheduling/management for the remainder of the academic term between the college/department and Classroom Scheduling.
  • The Programmed Classroom designation requires colleges/departments to utilize Ad Astra and/or MAUI Planner as their scheduling tool to account for all instructional spaces where undergraduate education occurs to enhance reporting integrity and accuracy of shared resource information.

Specialty Spaces

Non-classroom type instructional spaces assigned to academic departments.

  • Colleges/departments are strongly encouraged to utilize Ad Astra as a scheduling tool for all instructional section offerings or academic activities assigned to Specialty Spaces to enhance reporting integrity and accuracy of shared resource information.
  • Due to the significant resources previously allocated and the already established interfaces with our student information system, The Office of the Provost will no longer support the purchase of any other course/event management scheduling tool effective January 1, 2017.