Second Week

Notes for Teaching Assistants Lab 2

In this session, you will have students present their summaries of Sections 1-3 of their assignment, and you will introduce the second part of the assignment-prototyping and walkthroughs-as well as expectations.

Materials you will need:

  • overhead (you should have booked it with Communications Media for every lab last week)
  • the 681 TA binding, including:
    • transparencies for the 2nd lab (the walkthrough overheads included in last week's materials)
    • notes page that accompany the transparencies (also the walkthrough notes included in last week's materials
  • the sheet for recording group members (in case there are changes)

Student presentations

  • Tell students that the purpose of student presentations is:
    • to make sure students have started serious work on their assignments
    • for you to catch and advise groups that are heading in the wrong direction
    • for other students to comment, critique, and learn from each other's work
  • Depending on the size of your lab, you have to limit the time each group has. Give groups in large labs around 10 minutes, and small labs about 15 minutes. Don't let things get out of hand, otherwise the lab will be going far too long. Also, if students get bogged down in details, tell them to stop what they are doing and get onto the next part (ie don't be scared of taking charge!)
  • Get their grading sheet. Mark on it in the appropriate place how prepared the group was and the level of sophistication/maturity shown in the presentation. Don't be afraid to give low ratings! Critical comments now will usually make groups work harder.
  • In your grade book, indicate what group a person belongs to and whether they did the presentaion (I want to email people that didn't come...)
  • Each group should summarize the results of the main headings of their report section 1, ie:
    • Introduction. Describes briefly and in general terms the background to the system. Make sure that:
      • the project is appropriate (ie, over or under ambitious, if they decide to do something different, etc)
      • they describe the general problem to be solved
      • they describe the expected users,
      • they describe their work contexts, and
      • they describe what users will use the envisaged system for.
    • Concrete task examples. They should show one or two task examples. Make sure
      • tasks have the properties listed in Appendix 1
      • they describe some of the major implications of the task e.g., the class of the expected user (eg, a typical customer), the relative importance of the task (eg frequently done and important, infrequently done but still important, rare and not important, etc), and other nuances
      • Ask them:
  1. how they elicited the task (ie user discussions, observations, navel gazing)
  2. how the task was validated
    • Tentative list of requirements. They should list the major system requirements and priorities.
  • If any group is way off base, and you are not sure what to tell them, send them to me.

Assignment 1, Section 2: Prototypes and walkthroughs

  • Give out Appendix 2.
  • Tell students exactly what you want them to do and when. (See the schedule in the class booklet!)
    • Steps 4-5 of the assignment should be done before the next lab
    • In the next lab, students will present (informally) their prototype as well as walkthrough summary in lab.
    • They should be writing up the portfolio, particularly Section 1.
  • Present the library prototype and walkthrough summary using the overheads and accompanying notes.
  • Tell students what you will cover it the next lab.
    • you will lead a discussion when students do their protoype/walkthrough presentations
    • you will introduce assignment 2