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. The first thing that bothers me is the time some of the ICS classes are offered at. I've noticed most of my ICS classes are only available in the evening, usually at 6:00pm. For example, ICS 311 on TR is only offered at 6:00pm. Overall, having more sections per course will help me and other students find a fit for our different schedules.

2. Job opportunities and internships are as numerous in Hawaii as they are in the mainland. From my experience, it seems that many internship opportunities are looking for students who are graduating. As a undergraduate, this is very difficult to get experience before graduating. 

3. Similar to what Kimberly said, I agree that there should be more courses that will help with general requirements. Double dipping for major and general requirements should help those who cannot afford either time or money for these classes. 

1. While working on programs for a long duration, we could develop a bad habit of poor back posture. Normally when coding we are most likely sitting down to complete our assignments.

2. If ICS students are tight on money, it can be hard for them to keep up with the highly demanding laptop requirements. Especially since ICS is a constantly growing field with technology.

3. Some ICS classes may be scheduled later on in the day where you might hit the peak of traffic. Returning home might be a challenge if students live further from campus.

I am majoring in computer engineering, so i don’t really know how the ICS department is. Here are ways I think compE should be improved.

  1. Making it mandatory to get at least one internship and earning credit for it. This will help students who don’t see how important internships are.
  2. There are some classes that are available once a year, so if you failed it and it’s a prerequisite for another course, you’ll be set back a whole year.
  3. There should be more software classes for those interested in both software and hardware 

As a computer engineer major, I do not know much about the UH ICS program but here are some of my suggestions on how it could be improved: 

  1. When I was looking through the ICS courses that I would want to sign up for, it had a lot of the courses offered only in one semester. This inconvenience of time makes it hard for students to take the classes they want at the time they want. 
  2. From the certain ICS courses I've taken, they all specify how it is not recommended to have a job and take their course. Working makes it difficult to study enough hours to keep up with the course and I've heard it in engineering courses too. 
  3. I believe there should be a bigger push for internship opportunities.  I know there are internship opportunities offered to students all the time but it is not mandatory to do in the ICS program. I think it should be required for all students to participate in an internship or have a class dedicated to internships. At my old university I was required to do an internship and it was very valuable in the learning process of my major. 

1. There are lots of 400-level ICS courses listed in the UH Manoa catalog, but most seem to be offered once every couple of years. Having a survey or calendar of when certain courses may be offered, or emphasizing RadGrad, would be helpful in getting students into the classes that they want to take.  

2. While I understand that the B minimum is there to ensure that students have a decent grasp of the material, it can turn the focus away from the learning and put it on the grade. It is also unfortunate that students may be set back a semester due to missing the B threshold by a very close margin in some instances.

3. Though the flipped classroom model provides students with flexibility, we can't get clarification right away when we do not understand. 

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

  1. Social/networking events for ICS students to meet with each other and employers.
  2. A curriculum track designed for the "tech startup".
  3. More sections that are offered as writing intensive.

1) Lack of socialization within the major. I find that oftentimes my only exposure to my peers is during occasional group projects. Other than this, I don't find that collaborating with others is something I do often because there are often guidelines for certain courses which make collaboration difficult (high suspicion of cheating).

2) Lack of continuity with Languages. I have learned a few different languages from different courses, but I easily forget what I learned a year or a few semesters ago because I learn a language once and then don't use it again.

3) Extreme competitiveness in regards to employment & internships. Perhaps the ICS program can reach out to more companies that would be interested in employing interns and graduates.

UH ICS Program is can improve by…

1: Providing tutoring for upper level classes: I think this is also a UH problem. Programs such as the Learning Emporium don’t provide tutoring beyond Freshman/Sophomore classes.

2: Making sure schedules don’t conflict: In my freshman year, courses were listed in such a way that there was only one combination of all the recommended classes that didn’t overlap. This led to the incoming freshman fighting to get this one schedule. I think the UH ICS Program should make sure that the timing of their recommended classes don’t conflict with each other.  

3: Hosting a day to shadow a professional: I think it would be beneficial for students to be able to shadow a professional for a day. It would allow students to see what a day at a job they are interested in is like, as well as help them network with potential employers. It would also allow local companies to advertise their workplace, which might help stop the brain drain to the mainland.

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

1) Expand the ICS focus areas to include embeded development or operating systems (You don't have to have a EE or CE background to do this).
2) Have students make or participate in a vertically integrated project that is their focus from freshmen to senior year.
3) More courses should be available that are self-paced or online to go at the pace appropriate for the student.

Craig Opie

One of the ways that the UH ICS program could improve is to advertise the various opportunities they have to the students more, and in a clear, concise manner. Many students discover the POST lab and study area through word of mouth from the older students. I, myself, heard about it, but never knew where it truly was before I happened to stumble upon them on my way to a professor's office. Another way the program could be improved is to have better communication with the Electrical Engineering department for Computer Engineers to allow a smooth transition for equivalent courses. Finally, it would be nice to have courses earlier on that go into certain topics within ICS so that students with interests in one field do not have to spend an exorbitant amount of time in a topic they are not interested in and will not be applying in their career choice.

I think the ICS Department could improve through:

1.  More collaboration and structure between the ICS and Engineering departments, in terms of equivalent classes.

2.  Implementation of undergraduate projects. This may help individuals to gain more experience while working on a team to solve problems. This could potentially help more students to get better jobs, as projects tend to be big discussion points in certain interviews. There are a lot of ICS111 and ICS314 projects being showcased, but work in each student's respective field of interest would be beneficial. These projects may also serve to build stronger relations between faculty and students. Open Power Quality seems like a great project, and more opportunities would definitely help.

3.  Availability of a clear document that states the expected offering of ICS classes for future semesters and years.

1. Needing the necessary equipment. Though most students, if not all, have their own laptops, ICS requires a more optimal laptop resulting in a decent amount of money to spend. Though the trade off is not as many, if not none at all, textbook fees and while textbooks last a semester or two, the laptop is a worth  while investment.

2. The competitive nature. ICS 111 had 300+ students in an auditorium which was culled down to about 60 students for 211 the following semester. With not enough professors or courses to take, it's competitive trying to get into classes you need while staying on track for graduation.

3. The amount of time and effort it takes. Though this could be said about many majors, from my personal experience, ICS has had me invest most of my time into it. Sometimes you have a bug and it takes you forever to find the error, other times you don't know how you want to solve the problem as there are many solutions and ways you can approach a situation, and sometimes you may just upright not know where to even begin. ICS teaches you a different set of problem solving skills you more than likely haven't seen anywhere else making it difficult in certain aspects.



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