In a 4 x 4 block schedule, a year-long course is taken in one semester, and a semester-long course is taken in one quarter. Several fields and one report in Aeries will assist in scheduling students in a 4 x 4 block schedule and will help solve two problems that may occur.
The first problem to discuss is the sequencing of two courses that can be taken in the same school year, i.e. Spanish II and Spanish III. If you are scheduling for an entire year, and both courses are taught both semesters, it is possible for a student to request both the Spanish II and the Spanish III courses. That student could be scheduled into Spanish III in the fall semester and Spanish II in the spring semester, or even have both courses scheduled in the same semester.
To avoid this problem, use the Pre Requisite field in the Course Table. With the Spanish III course displayed in the Courses Form, click on the Change button at the bottom of the form, then select the Other tab at the top. Enter the Spanish II course-ID in the Pre Requisite field. Click the Save button when finished.
This forces the scheduler to schedule Spanish II in a term that is before the term that is used to schedule Spanish III. In other words, Spanish II will be scheduled into the fall semester and Spanish III will be scheduled into the spring semester. The Pre Requisite field will also sequence quarter courses, but will not properly sequence a mixture of quarter and semester courses.
The second problem to discuss is balancing the student’s work load for each semester. There is an Academic Weight field in the Course table. Valid values are 0-4. Assign each course a value to indicate the weight of that course.
Once you have assigned academic weights to your courses, the academic weights will be used when you schedule all students by simply checking the Balance Academic Weight box on the Schedule All Students into Classes form.
The scheduler will attempt to keep the fall and spring load as balanced as possible without rejecting the student. After students are scheduled into classes, the report Print Students with Unbalanced Academic Weight can be run from View All Reports.
This report will prompt you for the difference between the terms from either the Master Schedule or the Scheduling Master Schedule.
The following is an example of the report.