Evaluation Comments
Course:Object-Oriented Software Development

Quarter:Winter 01/02
Time: 01:00 - 01:00
Location: Distance Learning
James Riely PhD

Associate Professor
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What are the major strengths and weaknesses of the instructor?

1.   He is a very good instructor
3.   good at explanation, but no adquate handouts or slides for us.When teaching DL class, he should use his mouse or some device elso to point to the computer screen and class screen. Most of time, he uses his hand to point to screen. This won't be captured by COL device, so our DL student don't know what he is talking about.
4.   James did a great job of covering the material and motivating interest. His lecture style was a lot of fun. He encouraged participation and did his best to control the discussion with one student who was eager to sidetrack the class and slow down the learning of other students.
5.   Strengths - knows the material very well; doesn't waste time answering irrelevant questions from the audienceWeakness - Since I was a DL student, I noticed that he tended to speak very very fast, making it hard to understand him sometimes. Also from a DL perspective, he sometimes just pointed at various things, i.e. sections of code or diagrams, and said "this" or "that", which was not helpful to me, since he was about 2 inches tall on my computer screen, and I couldn't see what he was pointing at.
6.   The instructor is not very helpful in class or via e-mail. Questions that I asked in class were never really answered in an appropriate manner. E-mail responses were very late and most of the times no responses at all. The only strength of the teacher is that he is knowledgable. However, he does not do a very good job of passing that knowledge to his students. Class lectures and notes were poorly conducted. The grading distribution should also be more spread out.

What aspects of this course were most beneficial to you?

1.   Learning the design patterns
2.   I will soon be forced to use the stuff I learned in class at work...against my will...wow.
3.   design patterns
4.   Solid review of java programming at a moreconceptual level. Left the course witha much higher degree of confidence in developing larger projects and a deeper understanding of software design.
5.   Learning refactoring techniques. I would take a whole course just in that. The patterns we learned were also helpful, but I just wish I had had a stronger OO-programming background coming into the class. As it was, I struggled a bit with the basic OO concepts, and didn't have the time to appreciate the beauty of patterns as much as I would have liked.

What do you suggest to improve this course?

1.   have another book that is a java reference
2.   There is a new book covering Java Design Patterns that I suggest instead of the Gang of Four book. All of the examples are in Java and would be more beneficial than the GoF book. Both books talk about the same design issues but one is geared toward the Depaul curriculum.
4.   1. A new text book. The Gang of Four is a great reference. However, it is difficult to get through because all of the code samples are in C++. It would be helpful to have a java-based design patterns reference.2. It would also have been helpful to have more detailed lecture note handouts. Particularly some specifics on implementing some of the design patterns in Java.
5.   Provide a basic guide to translating the C++ code in the book to Java, or rewrite the examples in Java. I spent too much time interpreting C++ syntax, when I should have been looking at the larger picture.
6.   Preferrably another teacher.

Comment on the grading procedures and exams

1.   fair
2.   fair.
5.   Very hard, but very fair. Just the way it should be.
6.   The grading distribution should also be more spread out. If a student does poorly on the exam or the project - pretty much his/her grade is done with.

Other comments?

3.   Can you find some way to point to screen, so that DL students can catch it up from remote distance?This can greatly improve the interaction between DL students and the instructor, which make DL meaningful
4.   James is a great instructor. I would seek out additional courses taught by him.
5.   Re: Question 2 above: I'm not really sure what the objectives were.
6.   It has been a disappointing quarter taking this class. Firstly, commuting to class and then not being taught much was a bit disappointing.