CSCI3250 + CSCI3251 Computers and Society + Engineering Practicum - CUHK Course Review

Term Taken: 2019 Spring

Instructor: Prof. Chau Chuck Jee

Grading Scheme

  • Group Presentation (20%)
  • Class Activities and Quiz Question Design (5%)
  • Group Presentation Writeup (10%)
  • Peer Evaluation (5%)
  • Industry Visit Report x2 (20%)
  • Reflection Article (15%)
  • Final Quiz (10%)
  • Project: Learning GitHub (15%)

Review

This course was conducted in a “flipped classroom” fasion. In each lecture, about 4 groups (of 4 people each) gave presentations on various computer science topics. The concept sounded pretty cool and innovative, but the result was pretty bad. Since students didn’t have teaching skills as good professors, all the presentations were pretty dull and it was an extremely tedious process to listen to all the presentations back to back. Therefore, the attendence rate of this course was low as hell.


Aside from the student’s presentaions, we were also required to listen to some talks by CUHK alumini currently in tech industries. To be honest, I didn’t enjoy most of the talks and gained very little from them.


Another component of the course was article-writing. The professor maintained a Wordpress blog, which contained all the student’s articles. We could review and rate articles written by others on the blog. Though many classmates disliked writing these articles and thought they were useless, I actually enjoyed writing them (since writing is one of my biggest hobbies, and that’s what I’m doing right now).


The most interesting part of the course was the industry visits. We had to register for two off-campus industry visits to tech companies in Hong Kong and Shenzhen City. I attended the visit to Tencent’s Binhai building in Shenzhen, which was pretty fun and impressive. For most of the fellow classmates (including me), industry visit was the best part of this course.


Towards the end of the semester, a project on GitHub was introduced. I think many of the classmates learned some practical version control skills when going through the project, which is great, since GitHub is an essential skill in current software industries.


I can’t deny that my presentation and writing skills have improved after this course, but there are far more effective ways to enhance those skills, not to mention a total of 9 credits of written/spoken English courses are already required in our major program.


Prof. Chau is great and eager to receive feedbacks from the students, I bet by Prof. Chau’s efforts on improving the course, it will become better in future years.