Graduate Program

Educational Administration

Degree Name

Education Specialist (EdS)

Semester of Degree Completion


Thesis Director

Gerhard C. Matzner


This field experience took place during the 1981-82 school year at Centralia High School in Centralia, Illinois. The researcher served as the Director of Guidance and was responsible for scheduling 1,350 students into classes for the 1982-83 school year. The field experience started in December of 1981 and was completed in August of 1982. Computer scheduling was the method chosen to schedule the 1,350 high school students into 165 courses.

Centralia High School had done computer scheduling at McDonnell-Douglas in St. Louis, Kaskaskia College in Centralia, Parkway High School District in St. Louis, and Southern Illinois University in Edwardsville. In July of 1980, Centralia High School purchased a Burroughs B91 computer. In addition to being used for budget and payroll, the B91 computer is also used for student scheduling and student records. The principal, director of guidance, and a secretary attended school in Chicago for the purpose of being trained in the use of the Burroughs B91 computer to schedule students into classes.

The researcher, who served as the director of guidance, had a major part of the responsibility for using counselors and the computer to schedule students. This field experience presents in detail how both counselors and the computer were used for the purpose of computer scheduling. In addition, this field experience describes the roles played by the superintendent, principal, department heads, computer operator, and guidance office secretary in completing the student scheduling process.

This field experience is presented in four chapters. Chapter One presents an overview of the problem of scheduling students in a large high school. Chapter Two reviews selected current literature which relates to student scheduling. Chapter Three presents the design and results of the study, and also discusses the duties of the people involved and the success of the computer operation. Chapter Four presents a summary of the project and presents findings, conclusions, and offers recommendations which might be helpful to anyone who is investigating the use of a computer to schedule students.

A major accomplishment of this field experience was the production of a computer scheduling manual for Centralia High School. This manual is presented as the Appendix. The manual is divided into two sections. Section A, use of counselors, describes in detail the jobs and activities which must be accomplished by the guidance department if computer scheduling of students is to be successful. Section B, use of computer, describes the various computer programs which must be run at the proper times if computer scheduling is to be successful.

Both sections A and B are further divided into scheduling phases. A scheduling phase can best be described as an event or series of events which occur for the purpose of accomplishing a specific goal. Section A contains fourteen scheduling phases and Section B contains nineteen scheduling phases. Samples of forms, letters, and reports that are used during the scheduling process are included as attachments. Section A has eighteen attachments and Section B has twenty-five attachments.

The results of this field experience should be helpful to those people who wish to start or refine a computer scheduling program in their high school.