Staff Student Rep Meeting – Wednesday 13th January 2021

Staff Student Rep Meeting – Wednesday 13th January 2020

In attendance: Bjoern Franke Director of Teaching, Neil Heatley Head of Student Services, Karen Davidson Student Support Officer, Lisa Branney Student Support Officer, Mohammed Javaid Computing Support, Alex Burford Learning Technologist, Perdita Stevens MSc Programme Director, Kendal Reid ITO

UG1

It was asked if the Rep meetings could be made more transparent as not a lot of students check the Blog, or could an email be sent out weekly reminding people that it is there and available?

It was suggested by Alex that Google Groups can be set up and an email could be sent out to who wants to subscribe to a mailing list re the blog, students cannot be enrolled if they don’t give permission.

UG2

The students reported that they were unhappy that the Calculus course in Maths had set coursework starting on Monday of week 0 and wanted to know why?

ILA course is was reported that the tutors were jumping between 3 groups that were being held at the same time!

Neil explained that this could be due to staff resources but he will talk to Maths.

*Action Neil to talk to Maths*

INF2-SEPP Learn page is very disorganised.

UG3

No issues to report.

UG4

It was asked if the deadline of the UG4 Project at the start of April could be moved forward by a month.  Neil explained that he has spoken with Teaching Committee about this, and it could be possible to move the deadline but also remove the presentation part of the course, which holds no credit, although some students may find doing the presentation to be helpful, they could opt in to to do for the sake of feedback.

*Action Neil and Bjoern*

IoTSSC

It was reported that the course is overloaded with assessment, in previous years this was done with a partner but now it is to be done individually and the students feel the course is over assessed and could be problematic.

*Action Neil to talk to the lecturer*

MSc

If you are a part time MSc student, when can you take IPP, this can be flexible but would need to be discussed with your PT, and flexability could come with a concession.

Course Registration and Change information, can be found here:

https://web.inf.ed.ac.uk/infweb/student-services/ito/students/taught-msc-handbook-2020-21/registration-change

IRR CW1 was delayed in the marks being returned with minimal feedback, and CW2 came back after the Christmas vacation again with minimal feedback and the students feel that they are not learning anything from the feedback.  Alex Burford looked into the IRR submissions and there appears to be good feedback within the rubric, maybe students are not aware of this!

The instructor for the course was very slow to reply to posts on Piazza.

Project proposals students can propose their own project but if they see one that a Supervisor has proposed and they would rather do that, then they can add the project to the list of choices.

General

Is it possible to get some feedback from courses in the School of Maths and the Business School?

*Action Neil*

Study space in Appleton Tower will not be available until at least 1st March, if students feel that they need to have this resource then to contact Neil directly, this could change due to changing Government Guidelines.

The students feel that they are being overloaded with emails being sent out regarding Teaching Roles, even though they do not have Teaching Role, could a mailing address be set up to stop receiving emails that are not appropriate to some?  Thee reason the emails go to everyone is to gain interest in any positions that they may be interested in applying for.

If a student has any issues with their Personal Tutor they can always contact the Senior Personal Tutor, Neil or Bjoern, the Year Organiser and the Student Support Staff.

The Coursework Planner can found on the below link:

https://web.inf.ed.ac.uk/infweb/student-services/ito/admin/coursework-projects/semester-time-coursework-deadlines

The Rep Meeting Blog can be found here:

http://blog.inf.ed.ac.uk/issr/

Is there any course feedback available from last year, there was for Semester 1 but the University didn’t run a survey due to the COVID situation for Semester 2, the below link may be useful:

https://web.inf.ed.ac.uk/infweb/student-services/ito/admin/course-survey-reports

The list of Student Reps can be found here:

https://web.inf.ed.ac.uk/infweb/student-services/ito/students/year1/student-support/reps

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Staff Student Rep Meeting – Wednesday 13th January 2021

Staff Student Rep Meeting – Wednesday 16th December 2020

Staff Student Rep Meeting – Wednesday 16th December 2020

In attendance: Neil Heatley Head of Student Services, Sophie Mills Student Support Officer, Gillian Bell Teaching Organisation Manager, Adam Kirylczuk Computing Support, Kendal Reid ITO

General

Is it possible for all the courses to be consistent in Learn?  The Reps feel a more consistent approach would help the students.  Neil said he would bring this up at the next Teaching Committee Meeting, in which the School Reps can attend.

*Action Neil*

The students feel well prepared for Semester two, now that they know how Semester one ran.

Neil explained that the Teaching Awards are now open and this is an opportunity to vote for someone who they felt they had done an excellent effort.

https://www.eusa.ed.ac.uk/yourvoice/ourwork/teachingawards/nominate/

It was asked how the information given in the end of course surveys, Neil explained that the information is taken to improve or make changes to any courses.

Neil will be looking into arranging some branded Informatics lines after the year i.e. Hoodies etc.

The next meeting will take place on the 13th January.

 

 

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Staff Student Rep Meeting – Wednesday 16th December 2020

Staff Student Rep Meeting – Wednesday 9th December 2020

Staff Student Rep Meeting – Wednesday 9th December 2020

In attendance: Bjoern Franke Director of Teaching, Neil Heatley Head of Student Services, Lisa Branney Student Support Officer, Jade Gilhooly Deputy Deputy Teaching Organisation Manager, Mitchell Hunter Computing Support, Kendal Reid ITO

UG1

INF1-FP lecturer was praised by the students.

INF1-CL there the final a mock test last week, however the questions were put onto Piazza for them to work through together but the students wanted the solutions to the mock test so they could check their answers.

ILA test had different proofs and some papers varied.

UG2

No issues to report

UG3

No issues to report, all lectures have now finished.

UG4/5

No Reps in attendance

MSc

No Reps in attendance

General

Teaching will commence for Semester 2 on the 11th January, the School is still waiting on clarification with regards to on site activities, the School is working on the details and hopefully this will be distributed soon.

Can course material be uploaded onto Learn before Semester 2, so materials can be printed off and studied in advance.  Neil explained that some material could be made available but not the whole semester.

*Action Neil*

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Staff Student Rep Meeting – Wednesday 9th December 2020

Staff Student Rep Meeting – Wednesday 2nd December 2020

Staff Student Rep Meeting – Wednesday 2nd December 2020

In attendance: Bjoern Franke Director of Teaching, Neil Heatley Head of Student Services, Karen Davidson Student Support Officer, Jade Gilhooly Deputy Deputy Teaching Organisation Manager, Adam Kirylczuk Computing Support, Alex Burford Learning Technologist, Kendal Reid ITO

UG1

INF1-CL had a test today and it wasn’t based on the last two tutorials, so they felt underprepared and there was enough practice time.

On Monday morning STACK went down the website said it is going under maintenance, and gave the students a one minute countdown, with no updates when it would back on, the students had done some quizzes, which they then had to re-do.

There has been an spam email sent out to the Chinese students offering an to do their work for them for payment.

*Action Neil*

UG2

INF2-IADS the students are really enjoying the course and the way Mary and John teach and their Q&A sessions.

For the engagement blog the students have to write a 1000 word essay to show they are engaged with the course, the students feel that there are completely engaged with the course and are doing well, the feel that this assessment is not beneficial to them.

INF2-FDS the students have a test next week Monday 7th December and this wasn’t announced to them it was only advertised in Learn, it states that there is only a ten minute window, the test will be released at 13:00 it will be available to start until 13:10  and will have to be completed within an hour, the students feel that they would rather have an hour window, not ten minutes.  The test is worth 10%.

*Action Neil to talk to the lecturer*

UG3

No issues to report

UG4/5

No Reps in attendance

MSc

No Reps in attendance

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Staff Student Rep Meeting – Wednesday 2nd December 2020

Staff Student Rep Meeting – Wednesday 25th November 2020

Staff Student Rep Meeting – Wednesday 25th November 2020

Staff in attendance:, Neil Heatley Head of Student Services, Jade Gilhooly Deputy Teaching Organisation Manager, Lisa Branney Student Support Officer,  Mohammed Javaid Computing Support Officer, Kendal Reid ITO

UG1

Maths reading guides do not say why answers are incorrect or provide solutions and the weekly lectures are now improving.

CL Tutorials are not being marked and feedback is not being received – students do not know what is right or wrong in their work, the lectures are uploaded late (after the tutorials).

Claudia is very good and is always there to help; her weekly to do list posts are very much appreciated.

UG2

There is some confusion over extensions – a student was told SST do not do extensions anymore without clear guidance to apply to the centralised extension team which left the student thinking no extensions existed anymore for anything!

Confusion about accreditation – Bjorn to send out a clarifying email.

*Action Bjoern*

There are no Physics deadlines past week 11, however there are for Informatics courses – it is encouraged for deadlines to in or before week 11, however Neil is not sure that there is a rule regarding this. Jade to look into this. Regardless, due to the nature of this term, deadlines are more flexible.

*Action Jade*

There is some concern that UG2 is not engaged in surveys or feedback for this meeting – any advice? Some suggestions included Discord being more active than Facebook group chats, Google forms for feedback without the need to be in a group, and meetings including more students to provide a space for them to speak for motions and vote on them. There were questions of formality and whether this would make speaking less inviting. General thoughts are that we need a space for students to give their opinion.

UG3

Databases – organisation is good and the students are pleased that the tests were changed to accommodate all and appreciate the work put in to achieve this.

ADS – lack of interaction. The lecturer is not replying to emails or Piazza messages, the lectures aren’t live, and the tutorials were introduced later in the term, as the tutorials are the only direct form of interaction, students would like these to continue for as long as possible.

ACTION NH to contact CO to see if any additional sessions possible.

MSc

IRR lecture did not show up today, ITO now know of the issue and will find out more information. LECTURE REARRANGED

There is a lack of dedicated teaching staff – there are concerns that staff are hired only for research rather than their teaching abilities and therefore they are not enthusiastic or engaging when lecturing, some lecturers do not teach well.

Some feedback was not available for MLP from last year nor was all feedback available on Path – could all student feedback be available in Path for when students are picking courses?

Reduced study spaces in Appleton Tower and card access issues – students are still struggling to get into the building and with bookings as no same day bookings, this will be looked into more in term 2.

IAML there was cw2 complaints; instructors are unhelpful. Multiple students expressed confusion over cw2 but instructors would not clarify or help with issues raised. Students felt they were dismissive or rude and that staff are not willing to provide help and support. Students therefore feel alone as they have no advice, help or support. It feels as though the course is not a positive or engaging learning environment. There were similar complaints for CW1. Neil will speak to the course team about this complaint.

*Action Neil to talk to the lecturer)

General

End of teaching is next week, students are not obligated to attend next week but Neil will be here until 16th December. Students can post in the Teams chat or email Neil directly if unable to attend but have comments.

 

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Staff Student Rep Meeting – Wednesday 25th November 2020

Staff Student Rep Meeting – Wednesday 18th November 2020

Staff Student Rep Meeting – Wednesday 18th November 2020

In attendance: Bjoern Franke Director of Teaching, Neil Heatley Head of Student Services, Jade Gilhooly Deputy Teaching Organisation Manager, Lisa Branney Student Support Officer,  Jennifer Oxley Computing Support Officer, Kendal Reid ITO

UG1

INF1-CL the lecture was reported to be uploaded late, the students have a tutorial on a Tuesday that they are meant to watch beforehand but the lecture was not uploaded until the Wednesday.

INF-1-FP lectures are released on a Monday so the students feel that CL is out of cycle.

ILA the videos have not been comprehensive enough but this week there has been improvement, Maths have also looked into the clash on the 2nd December with INF1-FP coursework, test and Quiz and INF1-CL test and decided to move the ILA deadline to the 6th December.

UG2

INF2C-CS very good enthusiasm from the lecturer and the course is enjoyable, although they feel there is a slight lack in clarity with coursework 2.  They had to use GIT and they feel that this was not easy to follow, and they had to google it, a video on how to use this would be helpful.  They have only had 2 labs on MIPS and one on C, the coursework is 60% dependant on C.  The pointer the lecturer uses in the lectures is really unclear to the students on the screen.

*Bjoern to talk to the lecturer*

INF2-FDS the students get questions after each lecturer but they don’t receive any feedback on how well they are doing in the course, there is a class test which is worth 10%, so more information on how their knowledge on the course would be helpful and could some practice questions be made available?

*Bjoern to talk to the lecturer*

INF2-IADS  the students felt that coursework code was violated in the Python conventions but they did enjoy the design.

DMP there are still issues with the quality of the on-line videos, they are not clear, and there was issues with the DMP marking.

*Bjoern to talk to the lecturer*

UG3

Scheduling of the exams, although there is a 3 hour window for the exams to be sat which go live at 13:00 hours BST, it was asked for some students that are in various time zones could the window be opened to 24 hours?  Neil explained for this diet, the time can’t be changed but this will be looked into for the Semester 2 exam diet.

IAML Neil has spoken with the lecturer and he is going to contact the class regarding the rubric in Gradescope.

ILP the evidence reports did not have to use Latex, using Word was also an option and sample solutions are not supplied. The lectuerer will give feedback to the class regarding the language in the report.

UG4

Negative:

HCI coursework 1 feedback is only getting released now more than a week after the coursework 2 deadline, which means that the students we not able to use it to improve their work.

Human-Computer Interaction could feedback be given for the first and second courseworks, as the final coursework is very much related.

BDL coursework 2 instructions were really vague leading to a lot of people getting marked down for rewarding the winner of the game what in the mind of the marker was the wrong amount. The marks should have been adjusted to accept both interpretations.
The specification was poorly worded, leading to several students misinterpreting one of the core parts of the coursework, namely the logic when it came to awarding points to the winner, most students thought it worked like a transitional bet in that the winner puts in money and only profits with the opponent’s bet, but the way it was supposed to be implemented was a system in which the winner takes home their own money plus the sum of the total bets made.

Some of the feedback was given mentioned techniques the students weren’t taught, so it was questionable how students would’ve been able to improve if they didn’t know about these techniques.

Good:

DBS the lecturer is very wholesome.

Computing in the classroom is good, the weekly emails give the course a nice personal touch and the lecturer is very good.

NAT the recent coursework base code was in java script and no python code, the coursework uses neuro networks but it wasn’t taught only a one hour video was made available, the students felt that java script is not required for machine learning, the course also uses alot of references to Wikipedia.  The students have discussed the issues with the lecturer in the mornings Q&A session so he is aware.

MSc

It was asked if there will be more in person events coming up and Bjoern explained that although himself and Jane have give some they are is discussion to plan more future events.

IRR the students have received their grades for coursework one but there was no feedback received.  They feel that they were mislead on coursework instructions and they had no prior knowledge of the topics and felt they were at a disadvantage.

*Bjoern to talk to the lecturer*

General

It was asked about students who are currently studying in China, and using the VPN service from China, the below link should help:

https://www.ed.ac.uk/information-services/computing/desktop-personal/vpn/vpn-service-using-in-china

Student Representaives can attend Teaching Committee and Board of Studies to see what is discussed at Taught Programme Level and all this information is also made visiable

It was asked what the Athena SWAN award it is a national charter mark that recognises the advancement of gender equality in higher education, encompassing representation, progression and success for all.

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Staff Student Rep Meeting – Wednesday 18th November 2020

Staff Student Rep Meeting – Wednesday 11th November 2020

Staff Student Rep Meeting – Wednesday 11th November 2020

In attendance: Bjoern Franke Director of Teaching, Neil Heatley Head of Student Services, Sophie Mills Student Support Officer, Alison Downie Computing Support Officer, Kendal Reid ITO

UG1

Some students being new to the University are struggling and they feel there is a lack of support, the Counselling Serive has a 3 month back waiting list. Students can contact the Student Support Team if they need to:

http://web.inf.ed.ac.uk/infweb/student-services/ito/students/student-support

INF1A some of the marks are on Learn but not in EUCLID. The lecturers need to let the ITO know when the marks are ready for Euclid before they are uploaded. The marks for INF1A-FP on Learn and CodeGrade aren’t ready to upload some marks are ready to upload for CL so four sets of CL marks are on Euclid but the ITO hasn’t been given FP marks yet.

UG2

Due to the large workload and deadline overlaps, it was asked if this issue could be addressed so it doesn’t happen in Semester 2. Neil explained that at the end of every Semester we hold a Staff Student Liaison Meeting with the Reps and the course lecturers to address any issues at programme level for going forward.
*Action Neil to look at the deadlines for Semester 2*

INF2C-CS the students are really enjoying the course and the lecturers enthusiasm.

INF2-IADS the students are enjoying John’s music in the lecture, and the course is well ran, great responses from the lecturers and on Piazza.

INF2-FDS the notes are very good but they feel a in person workshop would be helpful.

Students have indicated that course organisers for DMP need to review the lecture materials as they don’t feel they are of the same quality as other courses. They have also outlined that the camera quality needs looked at.

It was asked if there are any UG opportunities available, but Neil explained that at the moment if there are any they are offered to the MSc and PhD students.

UG3

ADS the coursework was formative the students have had their marks back but no feedback and no solutions were made available and there has been no response from the lecturer.

ILP
Following the comments last week about the ILP coursework, Neil spoke with the delivery team about the feedback that marks were taken away unexpectedly.
They have outlined that the coursework specification tells the students on the course what they are to do but the information on how they are to do it is found in the course lectures. The lectures are not redundant and shouldn’t be skipped. They provide an explanation of what the coursework is asking for and they explain terms used in the coursework document (such as explaining what a “Maven build” is, for example). Students who don’t watch the lectures, and who don’t engage with the course on other platforms such as Piazza, put themselves at a disadvantage when it comes to completing the coursework.
They don’t agree with the interpretation that marks were taken away, the marking criteria was fully described in the specification document.
They are happy to take direct comments via the ILP office hours if anyone wants to take the conversation further.
The students feel that there is a lot of slides and no instruction on how a report should look and some students don’t know how to use latex.

IDB there is a 2 hour test next Wednesday and it will consist of 70% multiple choice and 30% open questions, the lecturer has indicated that if one question in the multiple choice is not correct then the open questions will not be marked.

IVR the students feel that they need additional notes and some students are struggling as they don’t have a mathematical background.

UG4

Positive feedback:
MLPR is great.
Students appreciate the staff are trying their best in the current situation.
HCI the lecturer shows concern for the class.
BIO1 is very well organised, the lecturer is very approachable and is quick in marking and responding to the enquiries.

Negative Feedback:
There are no extensions for some of the courses.

NAT has not improved there has been lots of issues and the lecturer has not been helpful and the coursework is badly organised. The material supplied for the coursework is not clear, the questions asked on Piazza, the replies are not clear, the information they have is very scattered and the students are not clear on what they are supposed to be learning.
*Action Neil to talk to the lecturer*

DBS lectures are deleted soon after and are not saved anywhere.
*Action Neil to talk to the lecturer*

Honours Project is a 40 credit course which is the equivalent of 400 hours work, but how much work is ok to be done at this stage and how much help can the students ask from their supervisor? Neil replied that the students should try and engage with their supervisor at least once a week.

MSc

A course organiser wanted to extend a deadline because he realised that the time given was not enough. Bjoern replied that the Course organisers do set course wide deadlines and can shift deadlines for the whole class (subject to coordination with the Programme Director/Year Organiser), and can let the ITO know of this change but cannot grant extensions to individual students. Extensions for indivudal students can be requested by the student, this is now dealt with centrally and not by the ITO.

https://www.ed.ac.uk/student-administration/extensions-special-circumstances/staff/extensions-explained-staff

IRR there has been a lot of complaints about IRR, although the deadline of coursework 2 has been extended, IRR is not organised very well especially tutorials. The template of coursework 2 was released late just 4 days before the original deadline and the important information like the structure of IRR outline was missed because the tutor didn’t show up without any reason. One of the students’ tutor said that every time he joined his tutorial session following the time table, there was no one in the session and afterwards he received the email which said the tutorial session was cancelled and would be changed into Friday but he did not receive the email about specific time the tutorial would be rearranged by the end of the Friday and has missed two tutorials already and the tutorial he should have attended introduced how to write coursework 2.

General

There was some confusion about the email that was sent out to the students from Bjoern about Semester 2 teaching activities. There are on campus activities being held such as lectures and tutorials. Bjoern is talking to the course organisers about their plans for semester 2 teaching, also taking into account the daily changes issued by the Scottish Government.

It was reported that some students are not keen to use the study space in Appleton Tower, as they think that the air coming into the building is recycled. Neil explained that the air coming into the building is not recycled and comes in from the vents. The students feel that the study space made available in the main library is more suitable.

Students can book rooms in AT via the below link:

https://web.inf.ed.ac.uk/infweb/student-services/ito/students/informatics-buildings/study-spaces-for-students/student-study-spaces-booking-system

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Staff Student Rep Meeting – Wednesday 11th November 2020

Staff Student Rep Meeting – Wednesday 4th November 2020

Staff Student Rep Meeting – Wednesday 4th November 2020

In attendance: Bjoern Franke Director of Teaching, Neil Heatley Head of Student Services, Jade Gilhooly Deputy Teaching Organisation Manager, Sophie Mills Student Support Officer, Kendal Reid ITO

UG1

The students feel there are too many deadlines falling into one day and there is a lot of work to do! They also have a lot of work to do for ILA, the course releases reading guides at 9am on a Wednesday, with the plan to do to the discussion on it on a Thursday along with an optional task and they feel that this is not enough time. During the Math lectures when complex problems are explained and they are not being shown visually, students would like a demo so they can follow on the problems easier.

INF1-CL tests are also released on a Wednesday and have to be submitted on the Wednesday.

On the 2nd December the students have INF1A-FP CW10, INF1-FP Final Test, INF1A-FP Quiz 10 and a INF1A-CL Test 5, which they feel it too much! It was suggested for next year to stagger the deadlines from one week to the next.

UG2

The students are feeling a bit less stressed this week, as last week they had a cluster of deadline’s. Due to the timing of the coursework release dates and submission dates it can be difficult to manage your time between each one, and it can lead to either concentrating on one and not the other which can cause students to start falling behind. It was suggested for future to stagger the deadlines.

INF2C-CS the students are really enjoying the lecturer and his enthusiasm for teaching the course.

INF2-IADS the students are also really enjoying this course.

UG3

ILP the coursework grades were returned to the students and most of the marks were good but some students lost marks as it didn’t specify in the coursework that they would lose marks if they didn’t watch the videos. There were points in the videos to assist with the coursework, and this was explained. They also feel that there was a lack of communication and how they were to use the resources and what information does the resources hold.

IVR the students feel that there should be tutorials or some kind of practice materials as the exam is worth 50% of the course.

UG4

HCI the students feel that there is a lot of report writing and the same with the Honours Project.

MSc

Some students are having trouble accessing their coursework planner in Learn but in order to use this you have to be connected to the VPN.

It was asked if it is possible to complete your Degree on-line for Semester 2, and they answer is yes.

It was asked why students cannot make any course changes after week 3, but Bjoern explained in the school that due to our student numbers, it would an administrative nightmare, the students can change their semester 2 courses up the end of week 2.

Hybrid teaching will continue for Semester 2, if possible as the School cannot predict what the coming months will bring due to COVID, if we can then we will try and hold more lectures, tutorials etc. on Campus, but this also depends on the availability of space and teaching staff. If we do encounter a second lockdown the School is prepared for a move completely to on-line.

RSS the students were complaining that the recorded lectures did not have audio or referenced resources that were not actually available, i.e. whiteboard. The recorded lectures had not been reviewed to be compatibly for the Hybrid Teaching. Neil has spoken to the lectures and this should now be resolved.

Some students are feeling that they are unable to network with their fellow students to the current restrictions and fear that they never will be able to.

MSc in Cyber Security the core classes are half this year as there were last year and the students couldn’t see what the changes had been made due to COVID, the DRPS pages goes back to 2004/5, so you can see what changes have been made since then.

General

There are still issues with the new extensions being dealt with centrally, some students have reported that they have applied for extensions 2 days prior to their deadlines (as per the guidance) and they are not getting replies until at least 3 days after the deadline. The School is aware of the situation and Bjoern is talking to College regarding this.

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Staff Student Rep Meeting – Wednesday 4th November 2020

Staff-Student Rep Meeting – Wednesday 28st October 2020

Staff Student Rep Meeting – Wednesday 28st October 2020

In attendance: Neil Heatley Head of Student Services, Jade Gilhooly Deputy Teaching Organisation Manager, Lisa Branney Student Support Officer, Alex Burford Learning Technologist, Kendal Reid ITO

Apologies: Bjoern Franke Director of Teaching

UG1

Purvi – there is a strong desire for in person tutorials and activities. Neil said that they are waiting for an update from the government and will then decide what we can facilitate. As well as this, Purvi asked for an email update regarding teaching in Sem 2 to be sent out. Neil confirmed there is a draft email being worked out and it will be sent out shortly.

Yuto expressed that Phil Wadler is “super kind and responsive” and has responded to the students’ feedback and allowed an FP reading week. Michael Fourman has also responded to feedback by increasing class tests from 40 minutes to 60 minutes. The reading week is especially helpful.

The workload for ILA is very high still. However, ILA tutorials being in person helps a lot as it provides space for interaction and study groups.

Purvi – ILA tutorials are in person; wants FP and CL in person too.

*Action Neil*

UG2

The students are really busy with coursework deadlines and are questioning why the deadlines are on the same day DMP and INF2-FDS both have a deadline for Friday 30th October at 1600.

*Action Neil*

INF2C-CS the students are really enjoying the lectures, the lecturer is very good but they did find the coursework quite difficult.

INF2-FDS the students find the labs helpful but they find they are spending a lot of time looking up references and they are self teaching themselves.

INF2-IADS the students really enjoy the music John puts on at the start of his lecture.

It was asked if Informatics do a loan service of tablets like the School of Maths, at the moment it isn’t something that Informatics supply but it could be something that they could look into.

*Action Neil*

UG3

Some students want an integrated MSc with Informatics and Physics or Informatics and Maths? A 5 year course instead of 4 years, MInf is not the solution. It would be a new programme and people would have to be able to apply for it. Neil will take the suggestion to Teaching Exec on Tuesday and will feedback on Wednesday to the group.

*Action Neil*

Gabrielle asked for an increase in the amount of time students can book lab space (it is currently 6 hours). Neil confirmed this has been increased to 10 hours a week. There are not as many people using space as anticipated, but more time can be added if needed. Level 5 is busier this week, so there is some improvement in the use of space.

IAML lectures are very good and labs and soltuions to the labs are very good.

ILP lectures are also very good.

IVR the lecture slides are from 2014, Neil explained that the content of the course hasn’t changed, only if the content was wrong them we would look into it.

PI the lectures are a few weeks behind, there is a delay in them being uploaded.

*Action Neil to speak to the lecturer*

ADS there has now been a Piazza page set up and the tutorials are due to start on Monday but they havne’t had any information emailed out, the students feel that the lecturer needs to be more engaging with the class.

*Action Neil to talk to the lecturer*

IDB has errors in the examples and they are too long.

*Action Neil*

HCI it is difficult to work on the group project without physically meeting up with the other group members.

MLP the students feel that they are not being taught anything and they are self-teaching using on-line videos, there are no challenges set and would prefer to in person activities.

UG4

NAT was having audio issues with the live lecture so it has now been moved to pre-recorded but there is now lot of background noise. The students also feel that the course load is to heavy for a 10 credit course they feel that they spend a lot of time going over the lectures and taking notes. Alex mentioned that a 10 credit course should equal roughly to 10 hours learning a week.

https://scqf.org.uk/about-the-framework/

*Action Neil to talk to the lecturer*

PDIoT the students feel that the course is hard to keep up with and asked if an extension can be given allowing the students to try and at least complete 50% of the work.

*Action Neil to talk to the lecturer*

BDL coursework feedback was not well received, the students were not informed that the coursework had been released and they have not had any response from the lecturer.

*Action Neil to talk to the lecturer*

Positives Feedback from Students

Natural Computing: Interesting concepts. My tutor (Imrie Calum) is probably the best part about this course – he tells us stories from his personal experience/research with Natural Computing and makes the course more exciting.

MLP: I really like the Labs. Finally working with Deep Neural Networks is very exciting!

PDIoT (Principles & Design of IoT Systems): A unique course and it’s interesting to learn about IoT devices. The project (building a “fitbit” to recognize human activities) is quite exciting too.

Honours Project: My supervisor (Prof Shay Cohen) has been very responsive and helpful with my project – having weekly meetings and answering our questions. I wanted to give him praise!

Databases coursework is useful.

Computing in the Classroom and Judy Robertson who teaches the course are simply the best. Never had so much fun in a course. Judy deserves a recognition medal if such a thing exists.

Human Computer Interaction is also awesome, love the meaningful coursework of fixing usability problems with Learn, hoping this might have a real world impact.

I found the 1st MLP coursework to be really well executed. Really enjoyed having to put together a report to have something to show for what I’ve learned so far. The literature review also gave me some exposure to some fascinating research.

Really enjoyed the TTDS coursework!

MSc

The exam diet has now been published and the Reps asked if it was possible for some changes as they feel that there is no gaps between each one, Neil explained that the exam timetable is set by Examinations that use an algorithm that works out so there is no clashes and it can be the case the students will have exams either one in the morning and one in the afternoon or an exam two days in a row. As the exams are now online Neil asked the Reps to send him the information and can bring it up with the Examinations Team.

*Action Neil*

General

Matt – can an email be sent out about email etiquette – people “replying all” to mailing lists. Neil will look into it as student should not be able to email the mailing list students@inf.ed.ac.uk

Pablo – 30-40 minute lectures are better than short lectures for algorithms.

Rayo -when you book a place in AT, you get an email with an Outlook invite that you can accept (which is cool), but when you accept it, you get an email back saying that you can’t email that address

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Staff-Student Rep Meeting – Wednesday 28st October 2020

Staff Student Rep Meeting – Wednesday 21st October 2020

Staff Student Rep Meeting – 21st October 2020

In attendance: Bjoern Franke Director of Teaching, Karen Davidson Student Support Officer,  Jennifer Oxley Computing Support, Alex Burford Learning Technologist, Kendal Reid ITO

UG1

The students reported that they were feeling overwhelmed by the amount of deadlines they have on a weekly basis.  They also felt that the deadline for Introduction to Linear Algebra had a tight deadline, Bjoern has spoken with the CO in Maths and he is aware of it.  It was reported that some students cannot see their marks in Learn for INF1-CL.

*Action Bjoern to talk to the lecturer*

The students would like to have some help with tips or tricks on how to handle their deadlines and work flow.  Bjoern said he would talk to Fiona McNeil who runs INFConnect, .  Alex mentioned that in Learn in the Assessment tab at the bottom there is a Coursework Planner and if the students go into (VPN required) http://student.inf.ed.ac.uk they can access their personalised coursework planner.

Some students are finding it difficult to hear their tutors online and they may have issues with their microphones, Bjoern suggested that they inform their tutors of this and if the tutors need help in purchasing equipment then they can talk to Neil.

UG2

Discrete Mathematics and Probability is not presented well and not engaging.

Maths supply their students with drawing tablets which helps them when doing their Maths work, but students who are from Informatics doing Maths courses aren’t supplied with them.  Bjoern suggested that a basic stylus can be purchased and used on a phone with an App or a tablet.  Alex also suggested the Multimedia Equipment Loans page:

https://www.ed.ac.uk/information-services/computing/audio-visual-multi-media/audio-visual-loans

UG3

Overall

Good

  • Accessibility of content online
  • Content posted on time
  • Active Piazza boards, office hours and clear times for things across ILP IDB and PI
  • Interesting courses

Bad: Lack of information on assessments

Suggestions: Better filing system in Learn, more consistent

Introduction to Applied Machine Learning (IAML)

Good: Has provide enough quizzes to test our understanding of the materials to compensate the materials that cannot cover online

Bad: Poor quality of lectures / not enough explanations

Informatics Large Practical (ILP)

Good: The early deadline for CW1

Bad

  • Material needed for assignment only taught 1 week after it was published
  • Labs are overcrowded and unstructured

Suggestions: Upload the ILP lectures earlier (at least the slides)

Introduction to Databases (IDB)

Good: Extremely well put together and the lecturer has been great at communication and online teaching

Bad: Quality of live lectures are really bad: the audio and video keep on breaking

Suggestions: Upload more materials / examples to solidify knowledge

Algorithms and Data Structures (ADS)

Bad

  • Lack of tutorials, tutors reading off solutions without answering questions
  • Lecturer not being very informative on the course content
  • No mechanisms for asking for help – no live lectures and no piazza forum has not been set up
  • Students have reached out to course organiser to start a Pizza page, but their emails have been ignored

Suggestions

  • Keep us informed about what is/should be going with the course, from tutorials to coursework
  • Add weekly quizzes like some other courses implement so as to be better prepared for coursework and the exam
  • Create Piazza page

*Action Bjoern to talk the lecturer*

Introduction to Vision and Robotics (IVR)

Bad: The lectures don’t give sufficient material to explain how to do the work being set out

UG4/5

Positive Feedback:

MLP is very well ran and the students are learning a lot.

BDL lecturer is very good and the deadlines are well spread out.

PDIoT the lecturer is really conscientious and is always asking for feedback and taking any feedback on board and he is very helpful.

IAML the students feel that is too much content and are spending a lot more time on the course than first anticipated.

IQC

The test last week was found to be really difficult and the students felt it was held to early in the course.  It was mentioned that there are no tutorials in the course only office hours but there are tutorials scheduled in Learn.

MSc

DBBA the lecturer runs over his allocated lecture time slot and because they are recorded using Media Hopper, the students are missing out in the last 5 minutes of the lecture, the recordings are recorded within the time of the room booking.

*Action Bjoern to talk to the lecturer*

CDI the students are receiving lots of emails which are targeted to other groups, so not always relevant.

HCI the tutorial time schedule in Learn were not correct and no tutors were present, these have now been moved to Zoom.

*Action Bjoern to talk to the lecturer*

IRR some students couldn’t join tutorials and there was time and tutor changes.

General

Extensions request are now being dealt with Centrally, more information can found on the below link:

https://www.ed.ac.uk/student-administration/extensions-special-circumstances/staff

The students feel that better communication is required from lecturers regarding any course information.  There are too many channels of communications that things can get missed, it would be best if all the courses followed the same line of communication.  Fiona McNeil is doing a survey through INF Connect to see what the preferred line of communication would be.  *Action Bjoern to talk to Fiona*

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Staff Student Rep Meeting – Wednesday 21st October 2020