HFOSS For Students

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This page contains plans and descriptions of how POSSE folks are involving students in HFOSS. This could be within a classroom, but could also include outside activities such as clubs and events.

Fall 2013

Instructor Heidi Ellis
Institution Western New England University
Course/Event CS 490 Software Engineering
Audience Undergraduate Senior CS majors
Web Site [1] Check out the Syllabus link for assignments, etc.
HFOSS Project(s) GNOME Accessibility/MouseTrap
Description This a fairly standard 1-semester Software Engineering course where we cover requirements, design, implement, test, etc. along with some SE management topics. We are using MouseTrap as the semester-long project for which students will create artifacts.

Instructor Peter Bui
Institution University of Wisconsin - Eau Claire
Course/Event IDIS 151
Audience First Year Non-CS Majors
Web Site [2] Check out the Syllabus link for assignments, etc.
HFOSS Project(s) N/A
Description While not interacting directly with a HFOSS project, the students will be learning about and interacting with open source software. In particular, Lab 0 will involve using IRC (one of the modes of communication in our class), and Lab 5 will involve performing a software scavenger hunt similar to what we did in Phase 1 of POSSE.

Instructor Patti Ordóñez
Institution University of Puerto Rico - Río Piedras
Course/Event CCOM 3030 / CCOM 3034/ Independent study
Audience First Year Non-CS Majors / Second Year CS Majors / Second and Third Year CS Majors
Web Site [3] All the course information is in Moodle, our Learning Management System.
HFOSS Project(s) N/A
Description In CCOM 3030, which is the Introduction to Computer Science, the students will not be interacting with an HFOSS project, but rather learning about and interacting with open source software. They will be writing an essay on the history of computers and their effects in society and we are spending two weeks on FOSS and HFOSS and they will be learning how to use Linux. They will also be doing a software scavenger hunt similar to what we did in Phase 1 of POSSE. In CCOM 3034, which is Data Structures, I am working on getting the students to work with SAHANA and building a search engine for the librarians as their final project. I am going to GHC Open Source Day to get my hands dirty with SAHARA since I didn't do that at POSSE. I am not teaching that class, but I am creating the final project. I also have two students who are doing independent study with me that are working on developing a speech interface using Simon of KDE with the Caribou keyboard of GNOME. The second phase will be to interface these two with an IDE like Eclipse. On the side, I am working to develop a Hackathon in Puerto Rico as a result of meeting Michael Brennan at POSSE.

Instructor Samuel A. Rebelsky
Institution Grinnell College
Course/Event CSC 151 (CS1 - Functional Problem Solving)
Audience CSC 151 serves as both a general education course and as the introductory course for the major.
Web Site [4]
HFOSS Project(s) N/A
Description Since this is the first course most of our students will have, and it uses a programming language, Racket, rarely used by FOSS projects, I'm keeping the FOSS component relatively light. Working with Peter Bui, a POSSE 2013 peer, I'm finding ways to use IRC as the primary out-of-class communication mechanism for the course. I'm hoping to see similar outcomes to what Peter's seen in the past - by having a department IRC, upper-level students will help introductory students. I expect that using IRC will be a way to get students used to working in the open (something surprising to many of them) and to collaborating (something that is likely to come up against some views of appropriate academic behavior).

Instructor Samuel A. Rebelsky
Institution Grinnell College
Course/Event CSC 207 (CS2 - Algorithms and Object-Oriented Design)
Audience CSC 207 is primarily designed for second-year prospective CS majors (our students don't declare majors until the end of their second year), although it attracts a variety of other students who want deeper programming experience.
Web Site [5]
HFOSS Project(s) Ushahidi
Description As I think we discussed at POSSE 2013, CS2 is a packed enough course that it's hard to add a lot. And CS2 students are still relative novices (and, in our case, complete novices in the language they will be using). But CS2 is about manipulating data through algorithms, and storing data in data structures. So I'm leveraging Ushahidi as a data source. Working with our campus outreach coordinator, I've set up a draft "Grinnell Volunteers" site to track where and when our students, faculty, staff, and alumni volunteer around the world. Working with a student, I've built a Java API that lets my students access and manipulate data from an Ushahidi server. (In essence, the Java API is a wrapper around the Ushahidi Web API.) Toward the end of the semester, I will have the students do a few-week project in which they build their own Ushahidi installations for a community client. Our campus outreach coordinator has identified some tasks and potential partners. Three interesting ones include (a) tracking smells from hog confinements; (b) tracking the availability of "free food" (e.g., trees and bushes on public property that have available fruit); and (c) tracking incidents of informal racial comments in our community. Beyond the Ushahidi work, I'm trying to get my students used to "working in the open" by having them submit homework via open git repositories and using IRC as in CSC 151 above. Oh, and I had them think about open-source licenses from the moment they started to use Git.

Instructor Stoney Jackson
Institution Western New England University
Course/Event MouseTrap Mentoring and Assistance
Audience Undergraduate Students from any Institution
Web Site [6]
HFOSS Project(s) GNOME Accessibility/MouseTrap
Description Support undergraduate students involved in MouseTrap by conducting IRC meetings, guiding students and faculty through upstreaming, programming when necessary.
Personal tools
Learning Resources
HFOSS Projects