Hawaiʻi's Technology Community

What are three ways that the UH ICS program could improve?

If you can think of more than three things, then please limit your response to your top three!

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1. Required classes have too small of a capacity, so they fill up very quickly and are very difficult to get into.

2. The selection of sections is limited. Sometimes there is only one section for a required class and the class time may not be desirable for a student.

3. There are not enough group or even individual projects, which are the cornerstone of resume building in software engineering. It is difficult to showcase your skills to potential employers using individual homework assignments.

1. Conflicting course requirements with other majors such as Computer Engineering causing unnecessary competition.

2. Really cold classrooms.

3. iOS development courses not offered.

  1. I know there are opportunities out there with UH Students working with technology in Hawaii, but maybe could there be more involvement and opportunities that is visible to the students?

  2. Mock coding interviews because I think it would be helpful if students knew what to expect, and to also learn to work under pressure. Plus it’s a good review on things you might not have touched for a while.

  3. This isn’t really a school issue, but being an ics student means putting in a lot of hours. It can be frustrating.

1. Placement Exams. There are a good number of people who could probably have benefited from skipping classes like ICS 111 and 141, due to previous discrete math and programming experience, which are fairly easy to obtain outside of a classroom environment.

2. Allow more Computer Engineering courses to count for ICS requirements. It was fairly unnecessary to have to take ICS 111, 141, and 241 when I had already taken EE362 and EE160, when both basically covered the same material.

3. Provide experience with "technical interviews". Technical interviews for tech jobs are very different from traditional interviews, and it would help to get experience with this sort of thing.

1. There are several graduation requirements that seem unnecessary. For example, taking foreign language classes until the 202 level.

2. Some students join with a large amount of coding experience and don't need ICS 111, but are required to take it anyways. 

3. There are not enough professors for certain classes and so students can't continue through the program without overrides. Some students are forced to graduate a semester later than usual.

1) general ICS program

I feel like UH throws a bunch of ICS classes that you have to find your own path to your goal. for instance, there is no such thing as web design, game development, database development in UH Manoa system. basically, you can graduate with general ICS degree and call yourself whatever you want which means there is less professionalism in the path. 

2) ICS upper classes mostly start at evening and it's once a year or never...

it was really hard to manage my schedule because 300+ classes are all in the evening that it collapse each other and it provided once a year or two. it is really frustrating for me because I took most of the general classes and lower level of ICS. if you miss the opportunity, you don't know you would have a chance to take the class before you graduate. 

3) more seats for ICS majors for upper class

if the class is provided once a year, it needs to be provided more than one session because we all know ICS students are overflowing and non-ICS students are also interested to take the class.

1) Tech savvy instructors can expect an ICS student to be tech savvy enough to post assignments any day of the week through online methods hence we can have assignments due even on weekends.

2) The amount of dry technical knowledge you're expected to learn in a short amount of time can seem enormous.

3) The many different locations we're expected to look for information can make it hard to remember or know where
some piece of information is. Should I check my email, laulima, google docs, instructor website, some linked website or now slack?

Can this be improved, should it be improved? Nah, these are probably just things you're expected to know how to deal with in the ICS field.

What are three ways that the UH ICS program could improve?

1. If possible hire more staff to allow more opportunities to take courses. I will be graduating at the end of this semester in Dec 2017 and there are many courses that I would have liked to take but couldn't due to no available seats left. The lack of courses available also lead to conflicting schedules or restrictions that don't give us the freedom to really learn what we want to learn.

2. Have more hands on courses. I've taken an algorithms course where I would study out of class and in class we would do group discussions/work. In this setup I feel like I've gained a lot more knowledge and I got to actually socialize with many of my peers. Actually experiencing things and trying to achieve a certain goal was much more valuable than learning by book/lecture/slides. 

3. Make assignments reflect what was actually taught in class. I've had a couple of courses that would teach me in detail about one specific aspect/theory but have a homework assignment that requires us to code a solution to a brand new problem using a language that was barely taught in class. I get that we should be able to research and learn materials on our own but I personally like to learn and apply class knowledge to assignments.

Tevin Sales

-We will need to dedicate a major part of our time even outside of work to stay on top of ever-changing technology

-ICS students need to be very good at balancing other areas in their life such as staying in good health and maintaining good relationships

-This is not an easy profession so it will take years of work to gain mastery of these topics

1. The class sizes for some classes are painfully small. This, combined with cross-listing with other majors such as Electrical Engineering and Computer Engineering makes is very hard for ICS students to get the classes that they need in a timely manner.

2. Some classes end up being late at night. This is because these classes need to be held in the computer labs, but the computer labs are used during the day and morning for other, lower-level classes, and this forces higher-level classes to be held at times such at 6 or 7 PM, which is a nightmare for anyone who commutes to school.

3.Having to take a foreign language course for four semesters (101, 102, 201, 202) can be a pain for ICS students, and is something that students of engineering majors, who take very similar classes, do not have to go through.

  1. The ICS program does try to create a strong local community among the students and faculty, but I really am keen to have had a cohort system like the education department has. In my humble opinion, having cohorts would increase class participation by creating a familiar nurturing learning environment.
  2. One thing I wish the program had was more funding. With its limited resources it does its best, but at times I’d like to have more classes offered or a certain subject to be offered more often. Some classes are often quickly filled up, granted sometimes when this case does occur, if faculty is available they will offer another section. Although when you look at more niche classes that are only taught by a certain professor then a student may miss out on a wonderful opportunity or will have to wait.
  3. Another disappointing fact I find, is this departments lack of connection with foreign universities. During my study abroad many German engineering students came to Japan to finish and defend their undergraduate thesis. I also understand that even in Manoa’s engineering department that there are opportunities to study at foreign schools. I just wished that there were more offered opportunities by the program, but that’s not to say they aren’t out there for students to find themselves.

1. ICS class availability should be increased. Right now the ICS class availability is very limited and tends to fill up quickly. As a result, many students have to change their academic plans and will take them longer to graduate which will also require them to spend more.

2. More online classes. This will help students who are working and who have conflicting schedules. 

3. There should be placement tests for new ICS students. This way, students with proficient programming skills can skip intro ICS classes which can help them save time and money.



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