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By Kassondra Granata
The new scheduling blocks for this academic year has created a more organized system that is more well-liked by the faculty and students.
As CCSU Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs, Dr. Carl Lovitt had redone the calendar and the scheduling blocks at the beginning of the Spring 2011 semester in order to avoid overlapping time blocks and to successfully utilize the University Hour.
“The university schedule cannot be driven by convenience, but by student need,” Lovitt said in the fall.
Lovitt reached out to all of the deans this semester and received feedback from every department. Lovitt said that there was nothing too startling that he heard on the impact of scheduling.
“Generally the new scheduling blocks have worked from the standpoint of Registrar,” Lovitt said. In November, Lovitt said that the Registrar was his main audience to propose the importance of the University Hour and the new scheduling block.
Due to the new block, the university has been able to fit all courses in a classroom, where last semester they had problems doing so. According to Lovitt, it was their intention to make more times for classes and to double classes in the evening, and they have succeeded.
“Every semester prior to this year we have had anywhere from 20 to 30 courses that we were scrambling to find classrooms for,” Lovitt said. “This semester, the problem has been solved.”
The feedback from the departments have been mainly positive, Lovitt said. There were a couple of glitches that they still have to face when it comes to the University Hour.
It seems that some classes still continue to be scheduled during the University Hour. Lovitt said that the reasoning behind this is a “change of culture” and faculty are accustomed to teaching classes at that time.
The music department and the art department were not pleased with the new scheduling block. Lovitt worked with the music department more than any other department before he made the new block schedule.
“I think those two departments have their own specific needs with individual sessions and scheduling and they present challenges,” Lovitt said. “Now they have to conform with a past schedule and have to make a compromise.”
The only “unintended consequence” is that the schedule shifted to a four-day week for students. Friday classes have dropped significantly this semester from 250 courses to 90 courses. Lovitt hopes to gain those classes back. This semester, there were only three Wednesday-Friday classes offered.
Lovitt said that he has only heard from the faculty on the new block and not students. He sees this as a positive thing. According to Lovitt, the university’s top priority is the students and getting them the classes that they need.
“The new scheduling block has achieved its purpose,” Lovitt said.”It has made more classroom slots available and I think students are now able to get to their classes easier and have the ability to take more courses. From my perspective I think it’s great that I haven’t heard student complaints.”