[teknoids] Seating chart software

Birch, Paul pbirch at richmond.edu
Thu Feb 16 10:09:27 EST 2006

James wrote:

> ...
> There's one question we really need to ask: is this a problem that
> really needs a technological/Webified solution, or is this another
> of an answer desperately seeking a question?
> An online directory of students is one thing (something we already
> on both our faculty and student intranets), but seating charts? The
> people who really care about these charts are the professor who use
> them, and I'd bet that most of them only care for the first few weeks,
> until they get to know who's sitting where. Further, the charts are
> really only useful in the classroom, so they still have to be printed.
> I seriously doubt that students care about seating charts, other than
> making sure that they're in the correct seat. Even if they did care,
> they don't receive copies of the charts, so their opinions aren't
> relevant.
> ...

>From my experience, there is at least some interest.  Several years ago
my first-ever CGI scripting project was a seating chart/course roster.
Really primitive, ugly coding, but well-received and still in use here.
This semester I learned that Blackboard had added a photo roster feature
that tied right into Banner, meaning that everybody now had ready-made
photo rosters at their fingertips.  So, I wrote my faculty announcing
this and asked whether there was still any need for me to keep my
interface up and up-to-date with new photos for the seating chart
capability that it had and Blackboard lacked. I really wanted to put the
poor thing out of its misery. I heard pretty quickly from about 3-4 who
said that, indeed, they did like making seating charts with it, and from
another who (and this is so-o-o law professor... <g>) asked for
additional features.

So, yes, at least some are still relying on seating charts.


Paul Birch
pbirch at richmond.edu
Computer Services Librarian
University of Richmond School of Law

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