Mistakes That We Often Encounter During Our College Projects
A college student reflects on numerous mistakes that keep happening in his college projects with team members that are still applicable to the enterprise.
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As a Computer Science student, we have to complete several projects with a team. We go through several software development processes and implement different software development methods and strategies. Besides applying and preferring one development method or strategies, we do not properly handle all the procedures and processes that we need to properly finish the project. Finally, it results in an incomplete or poorly managed, poor quality project. It is obvious that we lack expertise and experience in software development and it's going to happen, but we can overcome this. Here are some of the mistakes that I have made from my past projects. This mistakes are common to most students like us. By eliminating these mistakes we can complete a well managed, complete, and high quality project.
1. We do not properly communicate with our team members
We often have teams of 2-4 members for our college projects. We often have a great team spirit at the beginning of the project. We discuss on the various aspect of the project and allocate responsibility to each team member. But as time passes we often develop poor communication with each other, cannot meet our deadline, and we are in a hurry to complete our project on the last hour.
2. We start with the big picture
We are taught to start small, but we always try to start with the big picture. We know changes are natural in software development but we forget about that during projects and try to collect more requirements and materials than we need. We start allocating responsibility to team members. However, the responsibilities are huge and need to be handled by many members. We allocate a task that needs to be broken down to one member to allocate to other members. Such tasks are difficult to complete in time. We rarely follow the incremental model for our college projects.
3. We analyze requirements only as functionalities
Another reason that we have a very hard time meeting our requirements is that we often analyze them as functionalities that need to be provided. For example, a printing function. We forget about where and when it is needed or rarely consider the scenarios in which it will be used. Better way of doing this is by using user stories. It helps us to analyze it on different scenarios.
4. We do not maintain standards
Since we are students, it's hard to maintain standards, but we do not even set our own standards for the projects. It's important to maintain standards which help the readability of our work. It helps to maintain coordination and cooperation in a team. Each team member has their own style of doing works. In the absence of standards, there is poor communication between team members. For example, one cannot help to fix anothers error or cannot understand what they have done. We need to discuss and agree on how to comment code, the style of coding that we are going to follow, etc.
5. Testing is less of a priority
In our college projects we are mainly focused on completing the project. We forget about testing it properly. We complete our assigned task, but do not test it properly. We have a limited time period and we are in a hurry to complete it. The only thing on our mind is to complete the project.
Published at DZone with permission of Sushil Ale. See the original article here.
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