Benchmarking curriculum-based course timetabling: Formulations, data formats, instances, validation, visualization, and results

Annals of Operations Research (Impact Factor: 1.22). 04/2012; 194(1):59-70. DOI: 10.1007/s10479-010-0707-0
Source: DBLP


We propose a set of formulations for the Curriculum-Based Course Timetabling problem, with the aim of “capturing” many real-world
formulations, and thus encouraging researchers to “reduce” their specific problems to one of them, gaining the opportunity
to compare and assess their results. This work is accompanied by a web application that maintains all the necessary infrastructures for benchmarking: validators, data formats, instances, reference scores, lower bounds, solutions, and visualizers. All instances
proposed here are based on real data from various universities and they represent a variety of possible situations.

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Available from: Luca Di Gaspero
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    • "ple enough, a strong selection of features had to be done in the definition of the " standard " problems (McCollum et al. 2010; Bonutti et al. 2012). In some cases, the selection has been done at the expenses of the faithfulness to the real-world model. "

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    • "We have implemented two MiniZinc models for the Curriculum-based Course Timetabling problem. For the sake of brevity we refer to [3] for the definition of the problem. The first model considers only the hard constraints and uses two arrays of variables, which assign each lecture to a period and to a room, respectively. "
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    ABSTRACT: MiniZinc is a high-level declarative modeling language that has become quite popular in the last few years. One of the main features of MiniZinc is the underlying middle-level constraint language FlatZinc, into which a MiniZinc model, along with a given instance, is translated. In this work, we describe an on-going project consisting in the implementation of a FlatZinc solver based on local search. The solver makes use of the framework EASYLOCAL++, which provides an abstract implementation of local search techniques.
    Full-text · Conference Paper · Jun 2015
    • "Curricula are often considered in university course timetabling (Burke and Petrovic, 2002; Lewis, 2008) or high school timetabling problems (Post et al, 2012). Much research has been done in the area of university curriculum-based timetabling (Di Gaspero et al, 2007; Bonutti et al, 2012), typically using a base curriculum model. In this model, besides the usual classes, instructors and rooms tied together by various constraints (e.g., a room must be of large enough size, or an instructor can only teach one class at a time), there is a set of curricula defined. "
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    ABSTRACT: This paper presents an innovative approach to curriculum-based timetabling. To capture complex relations of real life curriculum-based timetabling problems, curricula are defined by a rich model that includes optional courses and course groups among which students are expected to take a subset of courses. In addition, courses may contain alternative course sections. A transformation between the proposed curriculum model and student course enrollments is formalized and a local search algorithm generating corresponding enrollments is introduced. While the proposed curriculum model is too complicated for existing curriculum-based solvers, the transformation enables curriculum-based timetabling in any existing enrollment-based course timetabling solver. The approach was implemented in a well established enrollment-based course timetabling system UniTime. The system has been successfully applied in practice at the Faculty of Education at Masaryk University for about 7,500 students and 260 curricula and at the Faculty of Sports Studies at Masaryk University for about 1,400 students and 25 curricula. Experimental results related with these problems are demonstrated for two semesters.
    No preview · Article · Jun 2014 · Annals of Operations Research
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