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Timetable Policy

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Section 1 - Purpose

(1) This document sets out Charles Sturt University's policy on the timetabling of teaching and learning areas in terms of time, space, and resources, including casual room use. This Policy provides a framework for the use of a centrally-supported, ICT system-assisted process for establishing the timetable of teaching activities within Charles Sturt University (the University) and for allocation of appropriate space on the University campuses and teaching sites to these activities. The Policy applies to all defined learning and teaching facilities covered by the Space Management Policy and to all timetabled teaching and casual room bookings.

(2) This Policy is designed to:

  1. allow for the production of a class timetable which minimises student clashes and supports a positive student experience;
  2. support the University's academic model which is underpinned by degree program structures and module offerings that result in an effective and student focussed timetable;
  3. allow the University to deliver an effective timetable for staff and students;
  4. affirm that all teaching activities must be managed in the approved Enterprise Timetable Software to facilitate effective management information;
  5. support sustained investment in the University's teaching estate and infrastructure to ensure use of available resources and that spaces remain fit for purpose and accommodate the evolving needs of students and staff;
  6. affirm that the Division of Student Administration are the custodians of the Enterprise Timetable Software and are responsible for providing a broad view of strategic goals for efficient use of resources;
  7. affirm that teaching activities take priority over non-teaching events in teaching spaces, regardless of the room's physical location; and
  8. apply the following principles to space management within timetable so that all classes appear on timetables:
    1. where spaces are used for a singular course due to design, the Division of Student Administration will negotiate with a teaching school to deliver an effective timetable; and
    2. where a space is of use to multiple courses, the Division of Student Administration will work with Faculty Sub-Deans to refine usage of the space. Determination of the utility of the space will be provided by the Division of Facilities Management and the Manager, University Laboratories as required.

Scope

(3) This Policy applies to:

  1. staff who use learning and teaching spaces and resources for the purposes of educating students;
  2. staff involved in the production and administration of timetabling activities;
  3. staff who maintain learning and teaching spaces and resources;
  4. staff involved in supporting disabled academic staff and students;
  5. students who use the timetable to attend learning activities; and
  6. external bodies that use the University's learning and teaching spaces.

(4) This Policy applies to University sites and partner operated sites where learning and teaching activities occur as specified in Appendix A .

(5) The outcomes specified in this Policy are the responsibility of the Timetabling Services Unit within the Division of Student Administration which is responsible for working with the Faculties and Schools to ensure that reasonable accommodation is made for staff and students.

(6) This Policy outlines the responsibilities that the Faculties, Schools, and Divisions have to the Timetabling Services Unit to ensure that the timetabling process can be undertaken efficiently.

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Section 2 - Glossary

(7) Terms used in this Policy have the same meaning as those defined in the Timetabling Glossary.

(8) In this Policy, unless the contrary intention appears:

  1. Class-Free Period - means the period from 3:00pm to 5:00pm on Wednesday during University Teaching Periods, to allow Faculties and Schools to conduct meetings.
  2. DSA - refers to the Division of Student Administration
  3. EA - means the Charles Sturt University Enterprise Agreement as in force from time to time.
  4. Enterprise Timetabling System - refers to the system called 'Scientia Syllabus Plus' currently used to provide timetabling services.
  5. Learning and Teaching (L&T) spaces - means learning and teaching facilities at Charles Sturt University campuses including lecture rooms, tutorial rooms, laboratories, and other specialist teaching spaces. These are identified as 'Rooms' on the Timetabling Website.
  6. Standard University Teaching Times - means the times allocated for University teaching during University Teaching Periods and include Standard and Core teaching hours:
    1. Standard Hours means 8:00am-6:00pm inclusive;
    2. Core Hours means 9:00am-5:00pm inclusive.
  7. Timetable - means schedule of teaching events.
  8. Timetabling Services Unit - means the Timetabling Services Unit in the Division of Student Administration which has custodianship of The Enterprise Timetabling System.
  9. Timetabling Constraint - refers to the limitations on where a class can be run. Some limitations include room size, location and audio-visual requirements.
  10. Timetabling Website - refers to the published location, Timetable@CSU, at which students and staff can access a timetable.
  11. The University - means Charles Sturt University.
  12. Unauthorised use of L&T spaces - means using a space that has not been booked through the Enterprise Timetable software.
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Section 3 - Policy

Governance

(9) The Enterprise Timetabling System (including the Casual Room Booking portal) is the sole enterprise booking system for internal teaching, tutorials and practicals, examinations, residential schools, and casual room bookings and is managed by the Timetabling Services Unit within the Division of Student Administration. In some special circumstances additional systems may be utilised, but these must integrate with the Enterprise Timetabling System and receive approval from the manager of Operations, Division of Student Administration.

(10) The Enterprise Timetabling System performs two distinct functions:

  1. Room booking for L&T Spaces (for both teaching and casual room usage); and
  2. Scheduling of teaching staff, L&T resources and pedagogical requirements (e.g. sequencing) for activities.

(11) L&T Spaces are identified on the Timetabling Website.

(12) All bookings for teaching activities must be submitted according to the published schedule to the Timetabling Services Unit for inclusion in the Timetable.

(13) All Faculties and Schools must use the Enterprise Timetabling System to record information such as staff availability, projected student enrolments, course structures, and room type requirements to enable the creation of the final timetable.

(14) Faculties are responsible for providing all staff related timetabling constraints to the Timetabling Services Unit. Executive Deans are responsible for approving and passing on constraint requests relating to courses within their Faculty.

(15) All teaching activities are managed through the Enterprise Timetabling System to ensure that timetables provided to staff and students are complete, and that clashes in resources are avoided.

(16) All learning and teaching space regardless of location should be recorded in the Enterprise Timetabling System.

(17) The timetable follows advice from the Division of Facilities Management and the Space Management Policy to define spaces for teaching purposes. The Division of Student Learning will be consulted by the Timetabling Services Unit as required.

(18) DSA will maintain the Enterprise Timetable room booking systems, web sites and services so they are fit for purpose and support the staff and student experience.

Standard Teaching Times

(19) The Timetabling Services Unit will endeavour to concentrate scheduling to Standard Hours and will consult with the relevant School(s) where this is not possible.

(20) In the first instance, the Timetabling Services Unit will make every effort to schedule all classes, including first year classes, during Core Hours.

(21) Timetabled activities may occasionally occur outside Standard Hours to accommodate all types of learning and teaching activities, including but not restricted to internal classes, residential classes and examinations.

(22) As specified in the Enterprise Agreement, no employee will be required to commence teaching within 12 hours of the conclusion of teaching on the previous day.

(23) Classes will start at five minutes past the hour and finish at five minutes to the hour.

(24) Classes required to be serviced by full-time teaching staff will not be scheduled during Blanket Class-Free Periods, except by agreement of the relevant Head of School and approved by the relevant Faculty Executive Deans.

(25) Timetabled teaching will have priority over other activities in booking teaching spaces during University teaching periods.

Standard Timetabling Practices

(26) During development of the Timetable, priority will be given to student clashes and high demand resources and rooms.

(27) When determining availability for teaching, Executive Deans will take into account the needs of staff with significant caring responsibilities, disabilities and medical requirements. All requests in accordance with University policies will be given due consideration.

(28) Timetabling will support requirements as specified in the Enterprise Agreement, including Clause 30 for staff work load and minimum break periods, and allowance of one hour for a lunch break for staff and students.

(29) Casual and fractional appointments may negotiate Timetable Constraints as part of their agreement with their Head of School.

(30) The final Timetable for residential schools will be released prior to enrolment for each session of each year.

(31) The minimum timeslot for booking a class is one hour.

(32) Modifications to the final timetable will be considered by the Timetabling Services Unit only if exceptional circumstances occur. These modifications may be requested by the Heads of Schools without authorisation by the relevant Faculty Executive Dean or their nominee, under the following conditions:

  1. Enrolment Less Than Expected;
    1. activities may be deleted if subject enrolment numbers are less than expected and the activities are no longer required. Locations may be changed to a smaller venue.
  2. Enrolment More than Expected;
    1. activities may be added if subject enrolment numbers are more than expected and extra activities are required. These will be added around existing teaching activities, if possible. Locations may be changed to larger venues only where absolutely necessary.
  3. Unexpected unavailability of staff/availability of new staff;
    1. unexpected unavailability of staff may require an adjustment to the Timetable in order to accommodate the availability of a new staff member.
  4. Unexpected unavailability of room/location.
    1. Unexpected maintenance or building works required to the space.

(33) The final Timetable for internal students will be published 28 days prior to the commencement of session.

(34) Schools with teaching arrangements that vary from the standard teaching weeks of session will notify students of session dates and specific arrangements separately.

(35) Only space specified in the room booking confirmation can be used and for the purpose for which it has been booked for and the specified dates and times.

(36) Audits of space usage for Timetabled purposes may be undertaken.

Casual Room Bookings

(37) University events - such as Graduation, Residential Schools and Examinations shall have precedence during non-teaching times for room bookings. Other events with strategic importance to the University, that may displace teaching activities require approval prior to booking by:

  1. Executive Deans;
  2. Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic); and
  3. Head of Campus for the campus affected.

(38) Requests for space for a 'for-hire' event usage of teaching space will be assessed by the Director, Residence Life on the basis of potential capacity to meet event needs, without reprioritising teaching activities.

(39) Requests for space during gazetted public holidays or official close-down periods will not be accepted, noting clause 43 below.

(40) General room bookings for non-teaching purposes in teaching space will only be provided once the teaching Timetable has been published as final. Time slots in teaching spaces not required for teaching may be booked for ad-hoc purposes following the publication of the timetable.

(41) Approved non-teaching activity utilising unused slots in teaching rooms during Standard Teaching Hours shall adhere to the room booking made to avoid disruption to teaching.

(42) Where there is disagreement over a casual room booking request, the Division of Student Administration will review the matter in consultation with the Vice-Chancellor's Office and/or any other relevant persons.

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Section 4 - Procedures

(43) Nil.

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Section 5 - Guidelines

(44) Nil.