The Kent Campus is Using its Classrooms Moderately Well
Although the university is scheduling the Kent Campus classrooms moderately well, the master plan seeks to further increase the efficiency of how we use our classrooms. The master plan sets the following utilization goals for classrooms:
Assignable Square Feet (ASF) per Station (the amount of space each student has): The Kent Campus on average provides 21 ASF per Station. To achieve goals for more active learning and more flexibility, the campus average should increase to 24 ASF per Station.
Student Station Occupancy (number of seats actually filled): The Kent Campus now fills only 57% of seats during scheduled courses. To more efficiently use these classrooms, the goal is 65% seat fill, which means appropriately scheduling courses into the right-sized classrooms.
Weekly Room Hours (how much of the week a credit-bearing class is using the room): The Kent Campus now schedules it classrooms on average for 28 hours/week.Many states expect that existing classrooms be scheduled for 35 or more hours/week before new classrooms are considered.However, the Kent Campus has a culture that results in less efficient use of classrooms, so the utilization goal is only an incremental increase to 30 Weekly Room Hours.
Promise to students - conflict-free scheduling (courses provided when students need them)
Promise to students and faculty - pavilion scheduling approach (faculty teach only in building or adjacent building from their office location)
The State of Ohio does not yet have classroom utilization goals. These goals were derived from other state’s guidelines and the experience of the master planning team.
Classroom utilization varies by classroom size, resulting in different implications for the future.
Smallest Classrooms (25 or fewer seats)
The classrooms with 25 or fewer seats, which is nearly ¼ of all Kent Campus classrooms, are scheduled for courses well below the Weekly Room Hours utilization target. Some of these classrooms can be taken offline, and repurposed for other uses, such as conference rooms. Adjacent small classrooms may be consolidated into a larger classroom.
Middle Size Classrooms (46-150 seats)
The classrooms with 46-150 seats are now scheduled above the Weekly Room Hours utilization target. Since many of these courses are filling half or less than half of the seats, these courses could be “right-sized” into lower-seat count classrooms. Additionally, the campus should provide additional middle size classrooms.
Largest Classrooms (More than 250 seats)
The four largest lecture halls are now scheduled well above the Weekly Room Hours utilization target. The need for large lecture halls is driving the Kent Campus to creatively use it other spaces. The School of Fashion, for example, is using the Stump Theater, but that is negatively impacting the performing arts use of that performance space. KSU does not intend to teach more large lecture courses as student enrollment grows, but one additional lecture auditorium is needed to meet current academic needs.
The classroom workhorse buildings are Bowman Hall, White Hall, and Business Administration. On average, courses in these building are above the Weekly Room Hours utilization goals. Taken together, these three buildings contain over ¼ of all classrooms.
Is your experience in scheduling classrooms similar to the average experience – it’s hard to find sufficient middle-size classrooms and large lecture halls?
Would you have interpreted the classroom utilization analysis differently?