Evaluation Comments
Course:Object-Oriented Software Development

Quarter:Autumn 15/16
Time: ::: - :::
Location: Distance Learning
James Riely PhD

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What are the major strengths and weaknesses of the instructor?

1.   Instructor pushed us to limits that may be more unattainable than others - as was the case for myself
3.   good at explaining this, lectures were good but jumped around a lot. I.e. each lecture did not have a cohesiveness such that I could walk away with one important lesson learned.
4.   Strengths: Very knowledgeable on subject and coding. Weaknesses: Questions and assignments are to vague. The solution of whatever you think is best as long as it works is not very intuitive. Additionally, most of the class was quiet except for the front student or two who was all over it and professional programmers, but for the most part when the professor would ask other students to provide feedback many were not confident in providing answers. The point is to follow, but this is not the most intuitive subject matter.An overall complaint about DePaul since this is my last semester. I took all the programming courses at DePaul. While this course assumes you can code, the proceeding courses (data Structures (at least when I took it) and many others do not interactively teach). These courses need to be taught in a lab, so there is actual playing around with the code. I feel that the proceeding also assume the student to be a proficient programmer. They would just put some code up and follow along. I can handle this part, but when it come times to sit down, I feel as though the code on the board and not playing with code left students deficient as coders.In other classes whenever there was a programming assignment people would moan and groan. I feel that everyone represented the same feeling, that it is not as intuitive a subject as the professors present the subjects.
5.   Great attitude. Made the class time fun and interesting. Really deep understanding of the material. As the class kept getting more conversational it became harder to clearly discern how the discussion was going to apply to the midterm or final. It wasn't until the review sessions before the test that this became clear. The final project was notably hard for students without a programming background.
6.   Expects a lot from his students.
7.   Clear lecturer, interesting assignments

What aspects of this course were most beneficial to you?

1.   Time management discipline. Java fluency
3.   the project.
4.   Programming was the most beneficial but I never plan on being a java programmer, and it seemed from class that all students are assumed to be in software engineering majors. I took this course ONLY to complete me computer science requirements. Maybe this should not be a required course for analysis or database concentrations for computer science. While helpful, I feared this class from the second I was enrolled as a student and knew this was a required course.
5.   Every concept learned in this class has been crucial to my performance as a developer. From learning how to write good test, to using complex design patterns, this class makes sure that you have enough tools to tackle the more complex programming classes.
6.   It definitely improved my programming ability.
7.   Programming assignments, learning patterns

What do you suggest to improve this course?

2.   While the assignments exemplified some of the design patterns being studied, they were not an exercise in applying them. They were easy to complete, as one just need to "fill in the missing code," but I feel that spending time studying the design patterns or practicing transformations between them would have been more in line with the course objectives and better preparation for the exams. Moreover, I feel that insufficient time was spent on studying design patterns prior to the week before the midterm exam, making it difficult, particularly for online students, to stay caught up. I took this course to become more familiar with object-oriented design patterns, and was provided good documentation of them, but was not left with much time to study them, at least while working and taking another course with homework, an exam, and an all-encompassing project like this one.
4.   Tests should be from course material, not well you should know this even though we spent very little time on the subject. Further questions should be more focused. Prof advised that if something is vague to write out our assumptions. This means, with the limited time we have to take a test, additionally we have to interpret the questions when it is intentionally vague. For example, 50+ students got one question wrong on the midterm, while the previous outliers (professional coders got these write). Further point the project needs to be a team effort. Make it harder but interacting and bouncing ideas of the other is way more helpful than struggling through code. Work with students to produce a more defined path to completing the project. The open endedness of the project was very intimidating.
5.   The final project was very difficult in a manner not pertaining to OOP. I spent dozens of hours just trying to understand how the code worked and how to make it do what the project intended me to do. It was good experience however, for something so complex there was very little support on areas we got stuck. For online students who don't have classmate support, this project was rather unwieldy.
6.   Honestly, it's fine as-is. Maybe weigh the exams less.
7.   The midterm was quite tough despite studying very hard for it so I have to suggest that exams be more correlated to the lectures and the notes rather than asking us to do new things on the spot.

Comment on the grading procedures and exams

1.   exams are/were the toughest for me at DePaul.
3.   good
4.   Ah, see previous for exam and project comments.
5.   It was fair. It's hard to make a test for design concepts that's also restricted to an exam period.
6.   This might just be a personal problem given the class's overall results but the provided time on the midterm felt EXTREMELY short. I was sprinting to get it done and still couldn't finish.
7.   Grading is fine. The exam was very hard even though I studied day and night for long periods. I would just suggest exam questions be mostly related to the lecture and materials rather than asking students to do new things they did not practice.

Other comments?

3.   this is not the instructors fault, but when is DePaul going to join the 21st century and get audio/video equipment that doesn't make online student's experience akin to a video conference from 1995? I can find lectures about the same topics on youtube-with instructors who give lectures for free-that have a better setup than DePaul's classrooms.
5.   Overall it was a great class.
6.   Easily the hardest course I've taken so far at DePaul. I got a lot out of it, however.
7.   Good class. Lots learned.