CS373 Spring2020: Final Entry

What did you like the least about the class?

Some rubrics for project submissions were very vague and it was very confusing when our group got points off for non-clear requirements. I would imagine confirming with the grading TAs at office hours before the deadline would help with this.

What did you like the most about the class?

I like the quizzes at the beginning of each class. Sometimes they were attendance quizzes, but most of the time they were related to materials taught previously. The quizzes encouraged me to actively review the material on my own and helped me to keep track of what was going on instead of rushing (panicking) about eating up the whole thing before exams.

What’s the most significant thing you learned?

I learned how to communicate with team members more effectively when working on a project together, especially when everything was moved online. I learned how to be more responsible and proactive since, at the beginning, it was, indeed, a little difficult.

How many hours a week did you spend coding/debugging/testing for this class?

It was mainly for the web project. Around 8 hours a week, but more hours before the deadlines. I did not spend too much time coding/debugging/testing for this class since I was trying to figure out ways to go home under this pandemic, so that estimate was definitely on the light side. One learns however much he or she puts in.

How many hours a week did you spend reading/studying for this class?

I usually completed the Perusall paper annotations when they were released on Tuesdays and did the other readings (and blog posts) over the weekend. It was probably around 8 hours a week if I only count the hours spent reading the paper, the blog post, and reviewing for exams.

How many lines of code do you think you wrote?

I wrote around 100 lines of code. I noticed others wrote >1000 (between 500 and 1500) lines of code though. It depended on how tasks were distributed among all the group members. Respect and love ❤.

What required tool did you not know and now find very useful?

I did not know about React and Javascript before this class, and I find these frameworks very useful now.

What’s the most useful Web dev tool that your group used that was not required?

https://www.react-spring.io/ Some animations we used were based on this framework. It was useful to us.

How did you feel about your group having to self-teach many, many technologies?

Learning these technologies by self-teaching was a very time-consuming but valuable experience. I felt very grateful for this. I have to get used to this because Computer Science / Software Engineering is just such a thing that I can never stop learning about since it constantly throws me surprises.

How did you feel about the two-stage quizzes and tests?

The tests on Hackerrank felt like upgraded versions of the online assessments I received from companies when trying to find internships. They were valuable mock practices and tested on abilities to think fast and accurately. I had to pass the Hackerrank tests to get >0 points and had to make sure my codes are right (beyond solely passing the tests) to get full points. They were based on the class materials (Python, SQL, refactoring, etc.), not the projects, and they were not easy. For the 2nd stage of the tests, we were assigned to Zoom breakout rooms with our project team members, and it was nice figuring out the answers together. So this class basically has two sides: (the web project) + (class, quizzes, and tests). There was a huge disconnection between the two.

How did you feel about the cold calling, in the end?

I like cold calling. It keeps me very focused in class. It helps me verify if I really understand the material being presented because sometimes I think I understand but I actually do not. The class is fast.

Computer Science student at the University of Texas at Austin