Implementation and Impact of Block Scheduling

Topics: Course Scheduling, Academic Calendar, Academic Planning, Academic Affairs

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Research Questions

  • What factors do administrators consider during the development of block schedules?
  • What aspects of campus culture (e.g., student demographics, course offerings, residential life, etc.) are most conducive to successful block schedules?
  • How has a transition to block scheduling impacted retention and completion rates and overall student achievement at other institutions?


Block scheduling, or “one course at a time” models, allow students to dedicate full focus and effort to each course they take and affords faculty members more flexibility to integrate experiential components into their courses. However, a successful transition to the block plan requires faculty members’ commitment and support. This brief examines the motivations for the transition to the block plan, the logistics of the block plan, the relationship between block scheduling and campus culture, and the impact on academic outcomes.