Academic Scheduling Protocols

The following resources are made available in order to assist academic departments in the scheduling of classes each term.

Introduction 

In order to fulfill the mission of Marywood University and its belief that education empowers people, the classroom facilities are primarily for use by students and faculty for activities and programs that are directly related and supportive of the basic educational functions of teaching, research, and the preparation of scholarly material. Every effort is made to ensure that classrooms are assigned fairly, used appropriately, and accommodate the University’s academic and instructional needs. 

The protocols contained in this document are designed to ensure that courses are scheduled in such a way that a wide variety of standard time slots are used.  The utilization of a variety of standard time-slots is a student-driven model which ensures that undergraduate students who choose to take full advantage of the flat tuition option of 18 credits will be able to schedule a full slate of courses. 

Classrooms and related teaching facilities are a finite resource and the goal of these policies is to maximize room and seat capacity in a fair and equitable manner. These objectives apply to all academic departments and classroom space. 

The scheduling of academic space is an ever-evolving process which demands the re-evaluation of class capacity, equipment and technology needs, and pedagogical changes. Since space will be assessed each time schedules are drafted for a term, faculty members should not expect to use the same space on a continuing basis.

Responsibilities

The Office of the University Registrar (OUR) has the responsibility to schedule all academic space. 

Each academic department is responsible for evaluating the schedule of classes for a specific term and providing accurate updates to the OUR during the established production schedule.

Contact Hours (Credit Hour Definition)

Marywood University defines its credit hour in compliance with both the United States and the Pennsylvania Departments of Education requirements. Marywood designs its academic calendar to meet or exceed the minimum standards for class meetings, assuring that there are 14 hours of classroom instruction, exclusive of holidays or final examinations. 

The credit hour consists of one hour of classroom or direct faculty instruction per week with two hours of out of classroom work over the course of the fifteen week semester. Thereby, each semester consists of 14 hours of classroom instruction with a 15th week devoted to a final examination or culminating experience. Each credit hour represents fifteen hours spent in class. In the case of a three credit course, the student will have 45 contact hours spent in class and an additional 90 hours outside of the classroom for a total of 135 hours. 

For all alternate instructional delivery methods, laboratories, or independent studies, the credit hour represents an equivalent to the minimum requirement for classroom instruction.

Instructors of Record

An instructor (or instructors) of record is assigned to each course section. It is understood that the instructor(s) assigned to the course section will be the person(s) responsible for the teaching of the course, addressing student outcomes assessment of the course, and for issuing grades to the enrolled students. 

Instructors of record have access to certain student data protected under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). Therefore, it is imperative that the correct instructor(s) be associated with courses at all times. 

Standard Course Meeting Times

Each school and department must schedule courses across the entire range of standard scheduling times. In cases where multiple sections of the same course are scheduled, the times should be varied. During the fall and spring semesters, no more than ten percent of classes by discipline may be scheduled at a particular time. Meeting times designated with an asterisk(*) are exempt from this requirement. 

Monday/ Wednesday/ Friday and Tuesday/Thursday scheduling patterns should both always be used, in addition to the scheduling of classes in the evening, as appropriate.

Fall/Spring Semester

Standard Fall Spring2

Summer Sessions

Summer Standard

Standard Course Meeting Time Exceptions

All classes are expected to adhere to the above requirements. A request for an exception is subject to the approval of the dean of the college in which the school or department resides. An exception is specific to the reason for which it is requested and the specific class for which it is approved. Any exception is subject to classroom availability. 

Procedure for exception request:

  • During the course draft process, the school/department chair submits an exception request to the dean. The request should accompany the draft course offering document when sent to the dean.
  • The dean reviews the request and communicates the decision to the OUR when the approved draft course offering document is submitted for processing. 

The OUR will review the draft course offering document to ensure all classes are scheduled according to standard course meeting times. If any courses are found to be scheduled in non-standard times and an exception request is not on file, the OUR will communicate this to the school/department. The course will not be added to Colleague until the exception request is adjudicated.  

Given the curricular nature of the programs in the following schools/departments, courses will exist which are scheduled outside of the standard meeting times. Even though the need exists to schedule classes outside of these time parameters, an effort should be made, whenever possible, to utilize the University standard. 

The School of Architecture
The School of Social Work
The Department of Music, Theater, and Dance
The Department of Visual Arts
The Communication Arts Department

Room Assignment Policy

The highest initial scheduling priority will be given to those courses which meet in a standard time as defined above.  Technology, accessibility, pedagogical, and special feature needs will be taken into account based on the information provided to the OUR during the course draft process for a particular semester. To the extent possible, classes will be assigned to classrooms in the academic department’s home building or in buildings geographically close to the home building. 

Courses scheduled outside of the standard course meeting times are assigned after other courses which comply with the University’s class time standards. 

Discipline-specific space should be noted on course scheduling sheets during the course draft process so that the information may be entered into the Student Information System. This avoids duplication of work and streamlines the room optimization process.  

Scheduling and Final Examinations

All final examinations are held in the classroom originally assigned to the course, except in circumstances where there exists an approved exception to the standard meeting time. The non-standard final examination schedule will reflect the alternate room assignment.

Classroom Accessibility

The OUR works closely with the Office of Disability Services and Human Resources to ensure that classrooms and related academic spaces are fully accessible for disabled students and faculty. Classroom assignments may be changed if a previously assigned room is determined to be inaccessible for a student or faculty, especially in cases where there exists an emergency or temporary disability.

Changes in Classroom Assignments

Schools, departments, and faculty may not move their class from an assigned room without prior approval from the OUR.    

In the event of an emergency evacuation of a classroom or building, the OUR will relocate classes to temporary classrooms or meeting rooms. 

Once the scheduling process is complete, the OUR will initiate a change in classroom assignment at any time for the following reasons:

  • emergency/temporary disability of the instructor or an enrolled student
  • time or day changes to a previously approved class section
  • the number of enrolled students is greater than the room capacity 

The instructor of record may request a change of classroom assignment if the requested classroom is vacant for the duration of the semester. Such requests will only be processed after the first two weeks of the semester.  

Only in unusual and compelling circumstances will room assignments be approved for changes of classroom assignments other than for the reasons stated above.

Changing the time/day of a course

Changing the time/day of a previously approved course causes detriment to a student’s schedule and should only be done prior to the opening of registration for the given term (for the major semesters, registration begins between the 9th and 11th week of the prior semester; registration for summer begins in mid-February). If the OUR receives a request to change the time/day of a course once registration has begun, a rationale will be requested from the school/department chairperson, unless one was previously submitted. 

No changes to the time/day of a course will be made once the term begins except under very unusual circumstances.

Room size and configuration

Seating capacity has been determined for each room in accordance with state and local ordinances. In order to adequately schedule classes into the most appropriate room, it is important to accurately reflect the capacity of a course during the course draft process.  If a school or department over enroll a course, the OUR must be notified immediately to determine if alternate space is available. 

Technology equipment may not be removed from one room and placed in another for any reason. If adequate technology does not exist in the room, the faculty or school/department should contact the Technology Helpdesk for assistance. 

Furniture may not be removed from one room and placed in another for any reason.  Any furniture which is moved within the room for the duration of the class must be moved back to the original configuration.

Classroom Maintenance

Housekeeping staff under the direction of Building Services is responsible for general and routine cleaning of classrooms. If a faculty member has a concern with the following, a Buildings and Grounds Work Request should be submitted: 

  • Cleanliness of the classroom or academic space
  • Damage to the room
  • Lighting replacement 

The Audio/Visual System Specialist is responsible for the maintenance and repair of all technology in a classroom or academic space. A ticket should be submitted to the Technology Helpdesk when any computer, overhead projector, computer projection equipment, television, and related A/V equipment is found to be inoperable.

Special Academic And Related Room Requests

Requests for classroom or academic space reservations for use by academic departments for college/school/department meetings or for course-related academic use are accepted up to one year in advance and are scheduled after the classes have been placed for the session. 

An academic or non-academic room request for an event that falls during the first two weeks of the fall or spring semester is scheduled one day prior to the event, in order that classroom and academic space remain available should an emergency need arise which necessitates the moving of a class.

Scheduling Reports

Reports Available on Colleague

Course Section Schedule (Form CSSC) 

Displays course section schedules in a variety of ways using a multitude of selection criteria. 

Section Availability Report (Form CSAR) 

Displays the availability of a section by selected location or faculty. 

Reports Available on the Reporting Server 

Semester Reporting Folder

  • Master Schedule: displays the master schedule of classes for the selected term.
  • Master Schedule by Day: displays the master schedule by day for a selected term.
  • Master Schedule by School: displays the master schedule by school and subject for a selected term. The data is sorted by faculty within the subject.
  • Master Schedule Prior to Fall 2012 (Legacy): displays the master schedule for the selected legacy term.
  • Master Schedule with Faculty Rank: displays the master schedule for a selected term and includes the faculty rank current with the selected term.
  • Master Schedule - Classes With Low Enrollment: displays the master schedule for a selected term where the student tally is less than or equal to a prompted number.
  • Master Schedule With Requisites: displays the master schedule, including requisite information.
  • Catalog Master Summary Information: displays the Catalog Master for the selected college/school/department and includes the current status of the course.
  • Catalog Master Detail Information: displays the Catalog Master for the selected college/school/department and includes the credit amount, grade scheme, course description, requisite information, and related information.

Request Forms

Catalog Master Change Form: used by the college/school/department to add/update/retire a course from the Catalog Master. 

Master Schedule Change Form: used by the college/school/department to add/update/cancel a class from a specific term.