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Tabu search heuristic for university course timetabling problem

A.R Mushi


In this study we have addressed the NP-Hard problem of academic course timetabling. This is the problem of assigning resources such as lecturers, rooms and courses to a fixed time period normally a week, while satisfying a number of problem-specific constraints. This paper describes a Tabu Search algorithm that creates timetables by heuristically minimizing penalties over infeasibilities. The algorithm is developed with special focus on the University of Dar-assalaam and compares the results with a previous manually generated timetable. It has been found that, the Tabu Search technique gives better results given a careful selection of parameters.