About | MathPlan

Since 2003, the Technichal University of Berlin has been scheduling its classes using mathematical optimization methods. Motivated by the big success, MathPlan was founded as a spin-off to make the advantages of automatic timetabling available to other universities.


The MathPlan Founders

Gerald Lach, one of the three founders of MathPlan

Gerald Lach

During his studies of mathematics at TU Berlin, Gerald Lach specialized in discrete optimization. Since 2007, he has been developing the scheduling tool Moses as a research assistant. In his capacity as the managing director of MathPlan, he is responsible for the roll-out of MathPlan solutions with new clients.

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Erhard Zorn, one of the three founders of MathPlan

Erhard Zorn

Erhard Zorn studied physics and mathematics at TU Berlin. He is one of the founders and the vice president of innoCampus, a department of the university which seeks to facilitate the use of new technologies in teaching. Erhard Zorn has been involved with university resource planning since 2002. Ever since then, the scheduling software Moses has been developed under his supervision.

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Mirjana Lach, one of the three founders of MathPlan

Mirjana Lach

The business mathematician has been involved in the technical development of the MathPlan solutions since 2007. She is responsible for the design of the processes from the system's implementation to its daily operation at universities. With her technical insights and organizational talent, she sees to the smooth project execution and timely delivery.

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MathPlan in Research

As a spin-off of one of the leading German technical universities, MathPlan has a strong academic background. All offered solutions are based on state-of-the-art research, to which MathPlan employees have made some crucial contributions.

Optimal University Course Timetables and the Partial Transversal Polytope

Gerald Lach, Marco E. Lübbecke

2008

Abstract

University course timetabling is the conflict-free assignment of courses to weekly time slots and rooms subject to various hard and soft constraints. One goal is to meet as closely as possible professors' preferences. Building on an intuitive integer program (IP), we develop an exact decomposition approach which schedules courses first, and matches courses/times to rooms in a second stage. The subset of constraints which ensures a feasible room assignment defines the well-known par- tial transversal polytope. We describe it as a polymatroid, and thereby obtain a complete characterization of its facets. This enables us...
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Curriculum based course timetabling: new solutions to Udine benchmark instances

Gerald Lach, Marco E. Lübbecke

2010

Abstract

We present an integer programming approach to the university course timetabling problem, in which weekly lectures have to be scheduled and assigned to rooms. Students’ curricula impose restrictions as to which courses may not be scheduled in parallel. Besides some hard constraints (no two courses in the same room at the same time, etc.), there are several soft constraints in practice which give a convenient structure to timetables; these should be met as well as possible. We report on solving benchmark instances from the literature and the 2nd International Timetabling Competition...
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MISTA - Examination timetabling at Technische Universität Berlin

Mirjana Lach, Gerald Lach, Erhard Zorn

2015

Abstract

We present a new integer programming based model for the examination timetabling problem at Technische Universität Berlin. This problem has to be solved to assign written examinations to rooms and timeslots at universities. Our model not only respects students who have to take several exams in one examination period, but it also allows for the preparation time of the students between consecutive exams. The new model has been successfully used at Technische Universita ̈t Berlin with more than 32,000 students.
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MISTA - An IP-based Model for the Post-Enrollment-based Course Timetabling Problem at TU Berlin

János Höner, Gerald Lach, Erhard Zorn

2015

Abstract

In this paper, we present a new IP-based model for the post-enrollment- based course timetabling problem at TU Berlin; this problem has to be solved in order to assign students to tutorials. We show that the new model yields better results than an old one, which uses two separate assignments of students to tutorials and tutorials to timeslots and rooms. The new model is applied to real-world data of 24,700 assignments for 8,600 students in 1,000 tutorials of 80 courses in 170 rooms within 500 seconds on an i7 quad-core machine.
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MISTA - Solving Huge Real-World Timetabling Instances

Gerald Lach, Mirjana Lach, Erhard Zorn

2015

Abstract

In this paper, we present a new IP-based model for the university course timetabling problem. It has been applied successfully to huge real-world instances. We have been able to generate timetables at RWTH Aachen University and Technische Universität Berlin—two of the largest technical universities in Germany—with more than 30,000–40,000 students, serious room limitations, and several additional constraints.
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University course timetabling with Moses: System demonstration

Gerald Lach, Mirjana Lach, Julian Schick, Erhard Zorn

2016

Introduction

Since 2002, innoCampus, a department of Technische Universität Berlin (TU Berlin), has been doing research on timetabling problems of various kinds. In the context of this work, an IT system called Moses has been implemented. Besides numerous administrative features, the system offers modules for examination, post-enrollment, and general curriculum-based university course timetabling problems. The latter will be presented in this system demonstration. ...
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Examination timetabling with Moses: System demonstration

Gerald Lach, Mirjana Lach, Julian Steenken, Erhard Zorn

2016

Introduction

Every semester, universities face the complex problem of planning the examination period(s). Usually, there are two such periods—the first one is immediately after the lecture period, while the second one is before the next lecture period starts.
As one of the consequences of the Bologna Process, the number of written examinations per student at European universities has increased. Consequently, students face an increased strain in completing their studies within the prescribed program length. ...
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Post-enrollment-based course timetabling with Moses: System demonstration

János Höner, Gerald Lach, Erhard Zorn

2016

Introduction

Since 2002, innoCampus, a department of the Technische Universität Berlin (TU Berlin), has been doing research on timetabling problems of various kinds. In the context of this work, an IT system called Moses has been implemented. Besides numerous administrative features, the system offers modules for examination, post-enrollment, and general curriculum-based university course timetabling problems. The post-enrollment-based course timetabling will be presented in this system demonstration. ...
To Paper