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Panel Participants: Lou Jimenez, Texas State University Jacob Jones, The University of Alabama Stacey White, Ad Astra Information Systems February 2, 2015.

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Presentation on theme: "Panel Participants: Lou Jimenez, Texas State University Jacob Jones, The University of Alabama Stacey White, Ad Astra Information Systems February 2, 2015."— Presentation transcript:

1 Panel Participants: Lou Jimenez, Texas State University Jacob Jones, The University of Alabama Stacey White, Ad Astra Information Systems February 2, 2015 ADVANCING STUDENT SUCCESS THROUGH IMPROVED COURSE ACCESS AND AVAILABILITY

2 Agenda Introductions State of the Higher Education Industry Aligning Student Success and Instructional Costs Moving the Needle/Enabling Change Texas State University – San Marcos The University of Alabama Questions and Answers

3 Introductions Lou Jimenez, University Registrar Texas State University Jacob Jones, Assistant University Registrar The University of Alabama Stacey White, Regional Vice President Ad Astra Information Systems

4 State of Higher Education National completion initiatives are pervasive, but awareness and practical frameworks to ensure improvement are lacking at state and institutional levels Our industry still, to a large extent, views student success as an Admissions and Retention problem (“get me smarter students” and intervene when necessary) Course access, critical to Progression and Completion remains a primary problem in our industry, impacting student success and institutional efficiency

5 Four-Year Myth 2014 Complete College America

6 #1



9 A System Refinement is Needed This is the typical scheduling process: 1. Course offerings are based on a historical schedule, typically a roll-forward of a “like” term 2. Departments refine offerings in silos (distinct processes and decision makers, limited collaboration and decision-support tools) 3. “Final” schedule is posted 4. Changes still occur after registration or even after classes start (cancellations, late adds, time/room changes)


11 43% 32% 25%

12 Data and Change Management Data-driven decision making has become a hot topic in our industry, but our strategic use of data is lagging behind most other industries. Significant resources have been devoted to gathering data, but with a focus on compliance reporting and high- level outcomes – most of which is not “actionable”.

13 Industry Summary As an industry, we don’t do a good job allocating our most expensive and (arguably) valuable resources – faculty Students’ course needs are discernible Refinement, not replacement, of the system can create significantly better results We can improve student outcomes We can improve affordability We can improve capacity


15 Benchmark: Strategic Scheduling Check Up To guide your institution towards more efficient and effective academic scheduling policies and practices Two-part learning exercise: Capacity Analysis Identify scheduling bottlenecks Spread class offerings out during the primetime week Reduce unused seats in rooms by scheduling classes into appropriately sized rooms Course Offerings Analysis Minimize class offerings that use non-standard meeting patterns Evenly utilize prime hours by subject/department Reduce the offering of unnecessary sections Higher Education Scheduling Index database and dashboards On-site presentation and mobilization consulting

16 Texas State University Lou Jimenez – University Registrar 1yr, 4mo at Texas State; 6yrs at University of AL Ad Astra User for @ 9yrs Official Fall 2014 Enrollment: 36,739 Undergraduates: 32,177 Graduates: 4562 Number of Course Sections Fall 2014: @9113 Number of Lecture Class Rooms : @214

17 Texas State University Current Status Had Strategic Scheduling Checkup, Summer 2014 Future Plans Use SSC recommendations for future schedule development Integrate supplemental software with Ad Astra for increased schedule effectiveness Use a predictive data model to align the course schedule to meet student demand, removing obstacles at registration for our students via Ad Astra’s Platinum Analytics

18 University of Alabama Location: Tuscaloosa, AL Enrollment: Approx. 36,000 (Fall 2012) Enrollment has grown 71% from 2002-2012 The University of Alabama is 4 th fastest growing public doctoral institution in United States, according to the Chronicle of Higher Education. Scheduling Style: Hybrid Sections Meeting on Campus: ~ 5,500/semester

19 How UA uses Ad Astra Products Astra Schedule (v. Manage and schedule events campus wide. Schedule all academic sections which meet in a room. This is done partially by use of Ad Astra’s Optimization Module and partially by departmental schedulers manually. Maintain and keep up with all Academic Space on Campus. Currently using data from within Astra to automate the locking and unlocking of 150 classrooms within 9 Academic Buildings on campus. Doors unlock 15 minutes prior to classes beginning.

20 How UA uses Ad Astra Products Ad Astra’s Strategic Checkup and SSC Dashboards Data gathered during strategic checkup has been used to determine the maximum capacity of academic space on campus. Examine data to find areas of “waste”. For example 17% of primetime (M-F 9AM-3PM) in auditoriums is being wasted due to non-standard meeting patterns. This gives us some ammunition to help get backing from administration. Data collected in the strategic checkup was one of the catalysts for the creation of the Academic Standards in Scheduling Committee for the University of Alabama.

21 What is Platinum Analytics A predictive data modeling tool that allows departments to align the course schedule to meet student demand while removing obstacles at registration for students. Platinum analyzes several types of academic data (historical sections and degree audit) to determine student demand (need for courses) Historical Baseline Historical Trend Program Analysis (Degree Audit) Predictive Program Analysis (Historical Data with Degree Audit) Simulated Registration (Conflict Checking)

22 Improved student access to required courses Increased student credit hour load Decreased unproductive course registrations Reduced class cancellations Reduced late class additions Improved course fill rates/resource optimization How Platinum Analytics Can Help

23 Questions

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