CS373 Fall 2020 Final Entry: Anwesha Roy
Last Entry :’)
Key Takeaways from CS373:
- test first, test during, test after, test, test, test
- when designing algorithms, demand the weakest capabilities (e.g. iterable vs. indexable)
- when designing containers, provide the strongest capabilities (e.g. indexable vs iterable)
- build decorators on top of containers, iterators, and functions
- utilize the benefits of being lazy (i.e. yield)
- always look for reuse and symmetry in your code
- collaboration is essential to the quality of your code and to your well-being in producing it
How well do you think the course conveyed those takeaways?
I can strongly attest that we spent a large chunk of time and effort learning these concepts within this class. All the work and material for this class tied together comprehensively into knowledge that will benefit me as a future software engineer. I think Professor Downing did a great job in familiarizing the students of this class with tools that we need for success in our field.
Were there any other particular takeaways for you?
I would like to add on to the last takeaway listed above. Without proper communication, collaborating with others adds unnecessary stress to one’s workload. Developing a communication system early on in team projects as well as always remembering to develop an understanding of other people’s viewpoints are qualities that serve well in seamless teamwork.
How did you feel about two-stage quizzes and tests?
I prefer two-stage quizzes and tests to normal individual assessments. Even when I was lacking knowledge in a concept area, I was able to pick up on what I had forgotten after discussion with my group members. This is a very effective way to learn things that are important enough to be assessed if you don’t pick up on them during class.
How did you feel about cold calling?
Cold calling is a great tool to ensure students stay attentive during lecture. It is easier to learn when watching a student who has a similar grasp of the material as you work through problems step by step with the professor.
How did you feel about office hours?
I am grateful for office hours and for the TAs and Professor Downing who spent much time this semester to help individual students progress throughout he material of this course. Thank you!
How did you feel about lab sessions?
I had very similar experiences in both lab sessions and office hours, so lab sessions were very useful as well!
Give me your suggestions for improving the course.
I wish we spent more time on refactoring since it was such a huge chunk of the second test. In addition, I liked the format of the second test more than the first test, so I hope Professor Downing keeps the second format for future semesters.
To future students:
This class was my favorite this semester! Although the workload was heavy, I learned a lot and feel satisfied with how much I have grown as a programmer. Just stay engaged, communicate well, and start working on assignments early. You’ll get a lot out of this class.