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July 15th, 2013 by Rehan Rasool

Developing a Software for Clark!

I am back, after weeks of hard work on my LEEP Project, OneShield internship, Class of 2017 welcome videos and some other projects.
This post will contain information about my LEEP Project!

What is my LEEP project?

My LEEP Project is called “Research and Develop a Software for Department Course Planning”. As you can see, I have to develop a software for Clark University.

What is the software about?
Planning a semester course schedule at a university is a very complex process because of the many variables and dependencies. At present, departments have limited tools to help them through this process and most of the work is done manually.
I will develop a software that assists the departments in mapping out the required courses for a term, based on the data of the previous semesters, which will be available for them to look at through the software filters. There will be additional features that will help the departments in avoiding course clashes and other scheduling issues.

Why do universities need a software like this?
It is needed to make the life of the department heads, faculty and registrar office much easier, as most of the work is otherwise done by hand.

Who are the people working on this project?
It is a project under the supervision of Rebecca Hunter‎ and Amy Garrigan from the Registrar’s Office. Professor Li Han is our faculty adviser and Samuel Kovaka (Class of 2016) is my partner in this project.
They are all wonderful people and I have loved working with them so far.

What will the overall structure of the software be?
It will be a web application, which means it will be accessible from anywhere through the internet. It will have a MySQL database at the back-end, PHP script in the middle and a JavaScript (Ext JS) driven user interface at the front-end.

How is the software going to work?
The Registrar Office will provide us with an Excel file with the previous 3-4 years data of all the courses that were offered at Clark University. We will process that into our database and then our software will display the data in a user-friendly “calendar” view, with many filters available (filter by faculty name, subject code, a particular semester etc.) through which the users will be able to see whatever they want. The users will have the ability to drag around the courses to suit their needs. They will also be able to add new courses. Once they are satisfied with their schedule, they will be able to hit a button, which will send their final schedule to the Registrar’s Office for processing. There will be additional features in the app that I will mention in future posts.

I am very excited about this project. We have already made a lot of progress and I will keep this blog up-to-date from now on.

Stay tuned!

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