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"The 21,000 students have to fit into rooms intended for 9,000 people, a task that requires intricate planning and could not be carried out without TimeEdit."

Barbara Obst Hantel, Principal, University of Potsdam

CUSTOMER
University of Potsdam
WEBSITE
www.uni-potsdam.com
LOCATION
Potsdam, Germany
NUMBER OF STUDENTS
21 000
PRODUCTS USED

TE Core

TE Reporting

TE Pricing

Potsdam University increases graduation rates and room utilization in a resource constrained environment

THE CHALLENGE
In beautiful Sanssouci Park in Potsdam near Berlin, Fredrick the Great built his impressive palace, Neuen Palais. Nearby, there are large palatial buildings that once served as living quarters for the guards who worked at the palace. Today, they serve a completely different purpose, namely the largest university in Brandenburg, Germany - Potsdam University.

Potsdam University has grown beyond expectations, from 3,000 students 20 years ago to 21,000 students today. And despite having three campuses in and around Potsdam, there is still not enough space for them all.

“We’ve lived with this restricted space for some time and have always received complaints from teachers and students. Rooms are often double-booked, or too small for the number of students in the class.”

Moreover, the university offers more than 100 different programs. The focus of these programs is on teacher training, something that demands courses in a variety of subjects while allowing students to make individual choices. As a result of new directives implemented in 2010, each module must be concluded with an exam and a grade before continuing on to the next one. This directive, along with too many curriculum scheduling conflicts, narrowed down the course flexibility and let to fewer students graduating in time.

THE SOLUTION
Potsdam University had been watching TimeEdit evolve for about two years, while the company and solution gained momentum in Europe. As the product became more mature, it eventually grew close to Potsdam’s vision for how to operationalize room management and scheduling. The team at Potsdam evaluated their options and came to the conclusion that it was time to swap their home-grown legacy system, excel sheets and paper lists to TimeEdit.

“Our resources must be better utilized and we need to simplify the administration across planning and scheduling. We were looking for an easy-to-use, flexible solution with integration capabilities to our SIS and LMS - TimeEdit ticked all the boxes”

In order to find bottlenecks and under utilized time slots and resources, Potsdam University turned to TE Reporting for a cross campus, in-depth analysis of their resource usage.

“We simply don’t have enough rooms for the number of students, so TimeEdit helped us utilize our rooms in a more rational way. For example, we quickly understood that we had a lot of timeslots that were under-utilized - like Monday mornings and Friday afternoons”

In TimeEdit, all of Potsdam’s resources are stored in one database for easy room and resource sharing across departments to enable full transparency. That ability, along with using TE Core’s built-in functionality for interdependency constraints (pre-requisites), enabled the university to ensure a conflict free schedule.

“Managing rooms is optimally all about avoiding collisions, where several courses and classes are booked in the same room at the same time, and ensuring that the right class is held in the right room. TimeEdit gives the university a bird’s-eye view of the resources available, which lets us to put together schedules with zero collisions and problems”

Of course increasing utilization rates and gaining a better overview are great, but without a system that is easy-to-use, it is difficult to put theoretical opportunities into practice.

“Everything has become so much simpler for our schedulers. They are not IT experts, but often teachers who have other tasks beside scheduling and planning. This is why user friendliness was important for us. With scheduling becoming so much simpler, they now have time for other things that need to be done.”

THE RESULTS

  • Number of students graduating on time (defined as within 6 to 7 semesters) increased by 5%

  • Resource utilization increased to 92%

  • Number of complaints from curriculum and room related issues fell by 80%

  • Student satisfaction related to curriculum and course quality increased by 25%

About TimeEdit

TimeEdit is the market leading resource management solution. With 150+ customers and more than 600 000 daily users, we help educational institutions improve their scheduling and resource management to provide the highest academic standard possible.

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