Preparing Location Data

Required and Optional Location Data

Schedule25 needs to know which locations it is allowed to assign during its bulk optimization process. Typically you should give Schedule25 only general-purpose classrooms unless you distinguish among different types of space (for example, general classrooms vs computer labs) using location features.

Schedule25 will only attempt to assign the locations you provide via a location search, so only provide the locations you want it to assign.

Each location you include in the location search must have, at minimum:

  • Location Name
  • Partition
  • Maximum Capacity

Each location you include in the location search can also optionally have:

  • Open/Close Times
  • Blackout Dates
  • Features
  • Default Layout Capacity
  • Fill Ratio

How Location Data Is Used by Schedule25

Partition: The partition a location is in determines which sections should be placed in that location based on departmental partition preferences.

Capacity: The capacity of a location determines how large a section can be placed there. Schedule25 will use either the maximum capacity or the capacity associated with the default layout.

Fill Ratio: The default fill ratio of the location determines the minimum utilization that must be met for Schedule25 to place a section there. For example, a 100 seat location with a fill ratio of 50% could only be assigned to sections with an expected headcount between 50 and 100.

Do you need a fill ratio?

Don't set a default fill ratio for locations you plan to include in a Schedule25 run unless you have discovered poor utilization in previous runs, such as a 20-person section being scheduled in a 200 seat auditorium. The Schedule25 algorithm is always trying to maximize utilization, but sometimes the limitations of your input (number of sections, distribution of requested location capacities vs the actual room capacities of your classrooms, and so on) can result in a few placements with poor utilization optimization. If you set a location's fill ratio to 50%, a section that provides 49% utilization would not be placed there, which is probably not what you want to happen.

Open/Close Hours and Blackouts: The open/close hours and blackout periods of a location determine when the location is and is not available for assignment. Schedule25 will not place any sections in the location before and after the open/close hours or during the location's blackout periods. Make sure these are correctly defined before you run Schedule25. 

Location Features: If a section has location feature preferences, the Optimizer will only place it in a location that contains all those features. See more information here.