Brigham Young University

Location
Provo, Utah
Product
Class Schedule Planning
Key Drivers for Purchase
A need for a tool that could enforce scheduling policies, schedule for multiple terms at once, support departmental faculty scheduling, optimize rooms, visualize actionable scheduling analytics and integrate tightly with their SIS. 

Outgrowing Homegrown: Why + How Brigham Young University Made the Switch to Coursedog

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"... an intuitive, modern user interface compared to the existing solutions on the market"

OVERVIEW

Brigham Young University (BYU) is a private religious institution that sits at the base of Utah’s Wasatch Mountain Range. It was founded in 1875 by its namesake, Brigham Young. The university, the largest religious university in the United States, encourages its 33,000 students to strive for excellence in faith, character, and intellect. BYU maintains several satellite campuses and is often cited as a leader in Higher Education innovation.

CHALLENGES

BYU used a homegrown schedule planning tool to manage their section and room schedule. However, it was challenging to enforce rules, there was required manual oversight, and there was limited workflow functionality within the tool. As a campus that scheduled for multiple terms at the same time with hundreds of schedulers and a complex priority room system, BYU realized that it had some scheduling challenges.  

In turn, BYU recognized a need for a solution that could enforce scheduling policies, schedule for multiple terms at once, support departmental faculty scheduling, optimize rooms, visualize actionable scheduling analytics and integrate tightly with their SIS. 

SOLUTION

Brigham Young explored the idea of procuring Coursedog Class Schedule Planning. While they were hesitant to work with a young company, BYU found Coursedog to be the most complete solution on the market: handling the entire scheduling process from faculty scheduling preferences through room scheduling. They also liked the idea of working with a team that was flexible to adapt their solution to BYU’s unique needs. Coursedog also had an intuitive, modern user interface compared to the existing solutions on the market, that they knew would be important to get buy in.

IMPLEMENTATION

The implementation involved a collaboration with both sides on the SIS integration, policy creation and updates to Coursedog.

First, BYU worked to develop its first time-block policy and created some rules to restrict many classes from being taught in evening hours. 

Coursedog and BYU then collaborated together to extract data out of AIM (BYU’s custom SIS system) to create a bi-directional integration with Coursedog’s RestAPI. 

Last, BYU had many custom fields and processes that needed to be accommodated from a scheduling tool, and Coursedog used custom fields and dynamic filtering, including accommodating priority rooms. They also set up Coursedog’s configurable instructor preference forms to map their campus dynamic.

THE OUTCOME

BYU enforced scheduling policies for the first time including an evening hour policy and a timeblock policy.  According to research: “Use of standard time blocks and a primetime hour policy allow students greater flexibility and opportunity in scheduling classes offered by different departments or colleges. It also improves space utilization for the college.” 

Fewer after-the-fact scheduling errors and change requests that needed to be manually accommodated via email helped the Registrar’s Office and department schedulers save time.

Better visibility and transparency into the schedule for administrators.