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MPALG 1213-1 Software engineering using formal methods, TDA293|DIT270

Status: Avslutad
Öppen för svar: 2012-10-25 - 2012-11-09
Antal svar: 23
Procent av deltagarna som svarat: 45%
Kontaktperson: Maria Sörner»

Opening question

1. Which university do you belong to?

Some of our courses are taken jointly by students of the University of Gothenburg and Chalmers University of Technology. In order for us to be able to look at the answers of each student group separately, we would like you to indicate which university you are registered at.

22 svarande

University of Gothenburg»2 9%
Chalmers University of Technology»20 90%

Genomsnitt: 1.9

Your own effort

2. How many hours per week did you spend on this course?

We mean total time, that is, it comprises the time you spent in class and the time you spent on your own work. Try to estimate the average time over the entire study period.

23 svarande

At most 15 hours/week»7 30%
Around 20 hours/week»11 47%
Around 25 hours/week»5 21%
Around 30 hours/week»0 0%
At least 35 hours/week»0 0%

Genomsnitt: 1.91

- My second course had a high number of assignments, so I could not spend as much time on this course as I would have liked. I also had some preparation work for a third course that I will have this study period.» (Around 20 hours/week)

3. How large part of the teaching offered did you attend?

23 svarande

0%»1 4%
25%»3 13%
50%»2 8%
75%»8 34%
100%»9 39%

Genomsnitt: 3.91

- To me, the pace of the lectures was too slow. I would have greatly benefited from getting the slides before the lecture, so I could have decided to go on the lectures with difficult topics.» (25%)
- Too much collisions with another course.» (50%)
- I liked the lectures and the style of the lectures. During one of the lectures I had a schedule conflict with another course, but I (almost) always went to the SEFM lectures. I only missed two lectures.» (75%)
- Not some of the exercises. Felt unneccesary.» (75%)
- I did often leave at halftime due to the lack of tempo and low level of the information presented plus really boring teachers. » (75%)

Goals and goal fulfilment

The course syllabus states the course goals in terms of learning outcomes, i.e., knowledge, skills and attitudes to be acquired by the student during the course.

To review the learning outcomes for this course, click here. (Opens in new window)

4. How understandable are the course goals?

22 svarande

The goals are difficult to understand»0 0%
The goals give some guidance, but could be clearer»6 27%
The goals clearly describe what I am supposed to learn»16 72%

Genomsnitt: 2.72

- From a student perspective it is not really meaningful to evaluate a course related to the written formal goals. The goals that is expressed implicitly through the content on the lectures and assignments is much more important. This how I interpret "the goals" here after.» (?)

5. Are the goals reasonable considering your background and the number of credits?

Answer this this question and the succeeding one, only if you do know the course goals.

23 svarande

No, the goals are set too low»2 8%
Yes, the goals seem reasonable»21 91%
No, the goals are set too high»0 0%

Genomsnitt: 1.91

- If there is one thing you learn in CSALL/MPALG it is logic. Most of the content of this course was covered in earlier courses I have taken.» (No, the goals are set too low)
- It would be worth to consider to make logic a prerequisite of the course. My lab partner had not dealt with first order logic before, so he had quite some problems with quantification. For someone with a thorough background in logic the course was good to follow, though.» (Yes, the goals seem reasonable)
- See 2.» (Yes, the goals seem reasonable)

6. Did the examination assess whether you have reached the goals?

23 svarande

No, not at all»0 0%
To some extent»8 34%
Yes, definitely»14 60%
I don"t know/have not been examined yet»1 4%

Genomsnitt: 2.69

- The exam and labs did not test theoretical knowledge very well. It tested practical application of that knowledge though.» (To some extent)
- I don"t think the last question was a proper exam question. There is more important things you could ask about instead...» (To some extent)
- See 2. The exam did not cover the most complicated and theoretical parts.» (To some extent)

Teaching and course administration

7. To what extent have the lectures been of help for your learning?

23 svarande

Small extent»3 13%
Some extent»6 26%
Large extent»8 34%
Great extent»6 26%

Genomsnitt: 2.73

- The first lectures started with have to create a variable, what a function look like and so on. Everybody taking a masters course in programming should know this... » (Some extent)
- Would"ve been more helpful if slides were published a day beforehand or so.» (Large extent)

8. To what extent have the exercises been of help for your learning?

23 svarande

Small extent»5 21%
Some extent»8 34%
Large extent»6 26%
Great extent»4 17%

Genomsnitt: 2.39

- Hard to understand Ramona.» (Small extent)
- Did not attend. Published solutions were helpful though.» (Some extent)

9. To what extent have the lab assignments been of help for your learning?

23 svarande

Small extent»0 0%
Some extent»2 8%
Large extent»8 34%
Great extent»13 56%

Genomsnitt: 3.47

- The lab pm is REALLY bad. First the promela/spin lab: for example at the philosophers problem, I knew this problem before this course and the problem about it. But the lab pm is very unclear with how to model this. According to the lab pm a solution were I just put all the forks in the middle so everyone can reach every fork is a proper solution. It is not said anywhere that all the philosophers has one fork to the left and one to the right and that these are the forks they could grab. At the Needham-Schroeder protocol verification I just passed the lab since I"ve taken the cryptography course before and I didn"t understand what to do. The second lab with key is also hard to understand. When you get stuck the only solution is to test all possibilities of what could be wrong because no one I knew had any idea of how to solve it... » (Some extent)
- The deadline for the second assignment was a little bit early though, so the deadline extension was highly appreciated.» (Great extent)
- Good laboration assignments but beter description! For example the text about protocol could be fixed.» (Great extent)

10. To what extent has the course literature and other material been of help for your learning?

23 svarande

Small extent»12 52%
Some extent»9 39%
Large extent»1 4%
Great extent»1 4%

Genomsnitt: 1.6

- The only written material I used was the lecture slides and test exams.» (Small extent)
- I did not buy the course literature. I occasionally looked at other material, mostly the SPIN/KeY references.» (Small extent)
- Was there literature?» (Small extent)

11. How well did the course administration, web page, handouts etc work?

23 svarande

Very badly»0 0%
Rather badly»3 13%
Rather well»7 30%
Very well»13 56%

Genomsnitt: 3.43

- The settings for key had some problems» (Rather badly)
- Why aren"t the lecture slides available before the lecture? If they were I could have learned the majority of this course without attending the lectures. Sometimes I left after the first half.» (Rather badly)
- The test exams weren"t publish until less than a week before the exam... I also would like to have the lecture notes BEFORE the lecture so you can come prepared.» (Rather badly)
- Good job on keeping us up to date on things via the google group. Next time, please publish slides prior to lecture!! It does -not- make the lecture more interative or whatever the reason for this being.» (Rather well)
- The lab assignments were sometimes unclear. It didn"t say, for example, that the dining philosophers can only pick up the two forks next to them.» (Very well)

Study climate

12. How were the opportunities for asking questions and getting help?

23 svarande

Very poor»1 4%
Rather poor»1 4%
Rather good»4 17%
Very good»12 52%
I did not seek help»5 21%

Genomsnitt: 3.82

- We found it difficult to work with the software. There should had been reserved lab slots with teachers that we could ask questions to. We spent a lot of time trying to figure out why a solution didn"t work, only to eventually figure out that the logic in our solution was correct, but failed due to some peculiarity. Being able to ask for help and get feedback would had greatly improved my impression of the course.» (Very poor)
- The only way to do so was in Google groups, and it usually took several days to get an answer.» (Rather poor)
- mail was quickly responded to» (Rather good)
- Ask during lectures, after lectures, in the news group, during exercise sessions or just mail any of the teachers or course assistants. This worked splendidly!» (Very good)

13. How well has cooperation between you and your fellow students worked?

23 svarande

Very poorly»1 4%
Rather poorly»2 8%
Rather well»5 21%
Very well»15 65%
I did not seek cooperation»0 0%

Genomsnitt: 3.47

14. How was the course workload?

23 svarande

Too low»0 0%
Low»4 17%
Adequate»16 69%
High»2 8%
Too high»1 4%

Genomsnitt: 3

- Low, considering my experience with logic from other courses.» (Low)

15. How was the total workload this study period?

23 svarande

Too low»0 0%
Low»0 0%
Adequate»9 39%
High»12 52%
Too high»2 8%

Genomsnitt: 3.69

- Together with Types.» (Adequate)
- As mentioned above, my other course required regular hand-ins and I had to prepare material and take tests for an upcoming course. In combination with this course, it lead to a rather high work load.» (High)

Summarizing questions

16. What is your general impression of the course?

23 svarande

Poor»2 8%
Fair»2 8%
Adequate»7 30%
Good»6 26%
Excellent»6 26%

Genomsnitt: 3.52 (bidrar till totalt genomsnitt/jämförelseindex)

- The promela part was good, but using KeY was not good. The system is difficult to understand, and most of the usage boiled down to trail-and-error, which is painful when the software requires you to click GUI elements with the mouse. Most of the trail-and-error process could have been automatic if there had been some macro capabilities, or a command-line mode for KeY. Regarding the difficulty to understand KeY, here it would have helped to simply have the options which are not relevant to us to be disabled, because when we found ourselves in trouble, we started changing settings (which sometimes worked, but often not), and this just adds another layer to the trail-and-error process. Having only the relevant options available would have reduced the number of combinations to machine through.. Although I would prefer even more to not have to change anything without knowing what it does...» (Poor)
- Didn"t really want to take this course, but it was the best this period. Got annoyed by that thrumpet in KeY. If your suppose to use such "research-orientated there maybe should be scheduled exercise-sessions where one could get help with key.» (Fair)
- Interesting, but not much new stuff if you have taken the course Logic in Computer Science.» (Adequate)

17. What should definitely be preserved to next year?

- The assignments»
- The promela part»
- The introduction of the logic used in the course. Even people with a good background in logic can use it as a refreshment of old material. I also liked the modeling of concurrent systems with Promela and the combination of JML and KeY, I would keep the tools. Although a quick discussion of alternatives during one lecture would be nice as well, to get a better overview of what exists and what is used in industry.»
- Labs were good. Published exercise solutions added a nice touch.»
- Don"t know»

18. What should definitely be changed to next year?

- Make the lecture slides available a few days before the lecture. I can"t see the point of making them available after the lecture.»
- The KeY part»
- I would suggest to condense the two lectures on JML to one, and to extend the one lecture on first order logic into two. Or at least make it 1.5 and 1.5. JML was very easy and straight forward, whereas the coverage of first order logic seemed very fast. »
- Rewrite the lab pm! This had been said in years. I know older students who have also taken this course and they have all said that the lab pm is about the worst they have seen in being unclear. And I agree.»
- I think too much time was spent on basic Promela usage. The lectures could have moved more quickly to the advanced topics. This is true for Key and dynamic logic also.»
- More clear lab-pm. Lab slots with supervisors that can answer questions»
- Publish slides/reading notes beforehand.»
- Better structure of the lectures. Make it interesting. »

19. Additional comments

- Bart was really helpful and good at answering mails and questions on the news group :)»
- This has nothing to do with just this course but me and some fellow students think that almost all interesting courses runs under the spring semester. Maybe you should ask the students if there is demand to rearrange the running period of the courses?»
- PLEASE publish the slides before the lectures, and a book would have been nice. Not everyone prefers to learn by interactive lectures, I would *much* have preferred to have gone through the slides before the lecture & then show up being able to ask questions. This would also mean the lectures could have a faster pace and be more engaging, instead of sometimes being too slow.»
- Adding more information on how the subject is used in industry would be appreciated, but is not strictly necessary.»
Genomsnitt totalt för detta stycke: 3.52

Genomsnitt totalt för alla frågor: 3.52
Beräknat jämförelseindex: 0.63

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