The Academic Timetabling policy articulates and clarifies College policy about the annual planning, preparation, production, publication and ongoing management of changes to the Academic Timetable at College. More specifically, it defines the sequence of activity and core principles for establishing viable Timetables that are Student and Lecturer effective, while achieving broader College goals around use of our scarcest spaces.

If you have any comments or questions regarding the Academic Timetabling policy, or about timetabling more generally, please contact the Central Timetabling Support Office (CTSO) directly, using the button above. 


Academic Timetabling Overview

SAF at night

Policy Goals:

  • Deliver Timetables that are Student and Lecturer focused, and promote excellent learning
  • Reduce barriers to collegiate and broad based sharing of those teaching spaces in highest demand and thus deemed “scarce”
  • Provide unambiguous clarity about how trade-offs between conflicting needs are resolved
  • Reduce the overall administrative load placed on Academic staff during timetable construction
  • Provide a set of operational definitions and norms that enable more efficient production of timetables; as well as supporting evidence based, data led decisions about resolving issues
  • Create the necessary foundations for service excellence in Academic Timetabling, in particular training for timetabling staff, tools, standards and support arrangements
  • Promote transparency, measurable outcomes, evidence based prioritisation and continuous improvement for all timetabling activity

The Academic Timetabling policy:

  • Covers all scheduled activity for enrolled College Students (including undergraduate and postgraduate taught programmes, cross-departmental teaching and Summer Schools);
  • Sets out key definitions for types of event, types of timetable and temporal considerations;
  • Describes the sequence of the timetable build required to ensure the best aggregate outcome for Students, Lecturers and College;
  • Establishes the concept of scarcity-driven resource allocation;
  • Establishes standards around session start times; length; balance within the week, term and year; and room occupancy targets;
  • Provides clarity around the management of timetable changes for the benefit of staff and students;
  • Describes timetable data quality standards required to meet the policy goals (see above).
  • Will be managed/supported by the Central Timetabling Support Office on behalf of the Academic Registrar and Vice Provost (Education), who is accountable for the effectiveness of the Policy.

Consultation Timeline

  • Presentation of highlights to VPAGE and Faculty Committees – September 2016
  • Update following initial consultation – October 2016
  • College-wide consultation –November 2016
  • Presentation to Provost’s Board – December 2016
  • Final amendments and approval by Provost's Board - February 2017
  • Implementation planning with departments – March 2017


The Academic Timetabling Policy will be reviewed in November 2017.