Hybrid Graph Heuristics within a Hyper-heuristic Approach to Exam Timetabling Problems
Burke, Edmund and Dror, Moshe and Petrovic, Sanja and Qu, Rong (2005) Hybrid Graph Heuristics within a Hyper-heuristic Approach to Exam Timetabling Problems. In: The Next Wave in Computing, Optimization, and Decision Technologies. Springer, pp. 79-91.
This paper is concerned with the hybridization of two graph coloring heuristics (Saturation Degree and Largest Degree), and their application within a hyperheuristic for exam timetabling problems. Hyper-heuristics can be seen as algorithms which intelligently select appropriate algorithms/heuristics for solving a problem. We developed a Tabu Search based hyper-heuristic to search for heuristic lists (of graph heuristics) for solving problems and investigated the heuristic lists found by employing knowledge discovery techniques. Two hybrid approaches (involving Saturation Degree and Largest Degree) including one which employs Case Based Reasoning are presented and discussed. Both the Tabu Search based hyper-heuristic and the hybrid approaches are tested on random and real-world exam timetabling problems. Experimental results are comparable with the best state-of-the-art approaches (as measured against established benchmark problems). The results also demonstrate an increased level of generality in our approach.
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