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'[OT]: Helping Profs. help students'
2001\02\26@104412 by James Newton

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Anyone have any ideas how we can help with the following? I'd like to hear
from professors and students as well as the engineers who have encountered
this issue in the past. If you know one of those, please forward this to
them...

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{Original Message removed}

2001\02\26@122334 by Dan Michaels

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James Newton wrote:
>Anyone have any ideas how we can help with the following? I'd like to hear
>from professors and students as well as the engineers who have encountered
>this issue in the past. If you know one of those, please forward this to
>them...
>

Anrew Warren:
>
>How about adding a new tag to the PICLIST -- something like
>"[HOMEWORK]:" -- that professors can use to post the details of their
>assigned projects, so we can match them up against the requests we
>get in private email?
>


Andy, James,

Is it your conception that the incidence of this particular phenomenon
happens to take a quantum leap about 3 months before the end of each
school year? :)

However, personally, as one who once taught electronics and computer
engineering [in another incarnation], I really don't believe this is
piclist's problem. This is a problem that all educators have to learn
to recognize and deal with in their own fashion.

- dan michaels
===============

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2001\02\26@130415 by o-8859-1?Q?K=FCbek_Tony?=

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Hi,
well I assume this is beacuse of mr Jose S. Samonte.
As far as I can tell he has been ( still is ) mailing
most people on this list. I've tried 'helping' him mostly
by writing pointers, but he still replies with 'this don't work fix it
please...'
At first it didn't bother me but as he is disregarding my pointers
I'm a bit dishartened.
Anyway I don't see any tags would help as people still can mail
off-list.

So please no more tags :)

/Tony

Tony Kübek, Flintab AB            
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E-mail: .....tony.kubekKILLspamspam@spam@flintab.com
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2001\02\26@192402 by Brandon, Tom

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Seems like something professors would have to deal with, both the general
and the specific. They could setup a filter that put all PICList mail from
their students in a folder so they could review it. If it seemed a student
was seeking excessive help they could ask the student to explain their
methods. It's not quite so bad if they at least understand it. After all
they can copy many answer's from any textbook, source code repository etc.

Maybe you could allow professors to register that they run a class using
PIC's. That way if list users thought someone was asking a little too much
they could see if the users email suffix matched that of a professor. Of
course, it's pretty easy to use a Yahoo (or some such) address so...

Tom.
{Original Message removed}

2001\02\27@083115 by Thomas McGahee

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The burden lies with the professor. I am a teacher of electronics.
If I assigned a group of my students a PIC based project that
I did NOT want them to get outside help on, then I would first
inform the students of that fact in very clear and precise terms.
I would tell them what they COULD seek help on, and what they
were expected to figure out on their own.

I would then post a short e-mail using the [OT]: tag to the
PIC list informing the list members of the project and the
details of what areas I expected the students to research
on their own.

Asking for very specific help on a particular problem
(such as the student who recently asked about why they were
only able to read half of the AD info) is legitimate.
Sending an e-mail basically asking PIC list members to
design the project for them is totally unacceptable.
As the teacher, believe me, I can tell in an instant when
a student has not done the majority of the work themself.

If a student cannot explain some element of their design
or detail how a program section operates, I KNOW that
they just copied something without understanding it. And
their mark will reflect that. Personally, I want my students
to UNDERSTAND what they are doing and WHY.

As the teacher, I take it upon myself to teach my students
all the nitty gritty facts that they need to begin the
design process. For example, I teach them how to use tables
to do look-ups and conversions. I also teach them how
to use two data points and perform an interpolation so
that the tables can be reduced to a reasonable size. But
when I assign a project to the students I WANT them to
grapple with the details on their own as much as possible,
because I want them to LEARN HOW TO LEARN. And they don't
get that by being handed everything on a silver platter.

You should see the look of pride on their face when they
hand in something that they labored through mostly on
their own, which works, and which they thoroughly
understand.

Fr. Tom McGahee



----- Original Message -----
From: Brandon, Tom <tomspamKILLspamPSY.UNSW.EDU.AU>
To: <.....PICLISTKILLspamspam.....MITVMA.MIT.EDU>
Sent: Monday, February 26, 2001 7:27 PM
Subject: Re: [OT]: Helping Profs. help students


{Quote hidden}

> {Original Message removed}

2001\02\27@112050 by PDRUNEN

picon face
I like Tom response,

I am in quiz as to why as I student, I would work on projects in excess of 80
hours per week to get a "A+", but as a working engineer, I cannot stand to
work over 40 hours per week for a paycheck.



Cheers,

Paul


In a message dated 2/27/01 8:33:45 AM EST, EraseMEtom_mcgaheespam_OUTspamTakeThisOuTSIGMAIS.COM writes:

<< The burden lies with the professor. I am a teacher of electronics.
If I assigned a group of my students a PIC based project that
I did NOT want them to get outside help on, then I would first
inform the students of that fact in very clear and precise terms.
I would tell them what they COULD seek help on, and what they
were expected to figure out on their own.

I would then post a short e-mail using the [OT]: tag to the
PIC list informing the list members of the project and the
details of what areas I expected the students to research
on their own.

Asking for very specific help on a particular problem
(such as the student who recently asked about why they were
only able to read half of the AD info) is legitimate.
Sending an e-mail basically asking PIC list members to
design the project for them is totally unacceptable.
As the teacher, believe me, I can tell in an instant when
a student has not done the majority of the work themself.

If a student cannot explain some element of their design
or detail how a program section operates, I KNOW that
they just copied something without understanding it. And
their mark will reflect that. Personally, I want my students
to UNDERSTAND what they are doing and WHY.

As the teacher, I take it upon myself to teach my students
all the nitty gritty facts that they need to begin the
design process. For example, I teach them how to use tables
to do look-ups and conversions. I also teach them how
to use two data points and perform an interpolation so
that the tables can be reduced to a reasonable size. But
when I assign a project to the students I WANT them to
grapple with the details on their own as much as possible,
because I want them to LEARN HOW TO LEARN. And they don't
get that by being handed everything on a silver platter.

You should see the look of pride on their face when they
hand in something that they labored through mostly on
their own, which works, and which they thoroughly
understand.

Fr. Tom McGahee >>

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2001\02\27@114550 by Dal Wheeler

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----- Original Message -----
From: <PDRUNENspamspam_OUTAOL.COM>
To: <@spam@PICLISTKILLspamspamMITVMA.MIT.EDU>
Sent: Tuesday, February 27, 2001 9:21 AM
Subject: Re: [OT]: Helping Profs. help students


> I like Tom response,
>
> I am in quiz as to why as I student, I would work on projects in excess of
80
> hours per week to get a "A+", but as a working engineer, I cannot stand to
> work over 40 hours per week for a paycheck.
>

hehe, I remember thinking of all this free time I would have for "fun"
projects after I graduated and just had a job to contend with.  Boy, I don't
know where the time went, but I did more "fun" (not for a grade) projects
while I was in school.  It doesn't seem like I had much free time while in
school.  Maybe the brain cells were firing better back then!?!

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2001\02\27@123425 by Alan B. Pearce

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>hehe, I remember thinking of all this free time I would have for "fun"
>projects after I graduated and just had a job to contend with.  Boy, I don't
>know where the time went, but I did more "fun" (not for a grade) projects
>while I was in school.  It doesn't seem like I had much free time while in
>school.  Maybe the brain cells were firing better back then!?!

I bet your fun projects paralleled your studies, and so some of your study
effort helped your fun project, and vice versa. Not quite sure how girls,
snowboarding, surfing and PIC's parallel each other, but then you never know :)

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2001\02\27@173653 by Andrew Warren

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Brandon, Tom <KILLspamPICLISTKILLspamspamMITVMA.MIT.EDU> wrote:

> Seems like something professors would have to deal with, both the
> general and the specific. They could setup a filter that put all
> PICList mail from their students in a folder so they could review it.
> If it seemed a student was seeking excessive help they could ask the
> student to explain their methods.

   Yes, but I was talking about students who contact me (and,
   presumably, other consultants) OFF the list, in private email,
   and offer to pay our usual rates to produce "their" design.

   I'm ALWAYS willing to help students by giving them broad-stroke
   advice or by explaining a subtle point not well-documented in
   the data sheets.  I'll even write a bit of code for them if I
   think that that's the best way to explain something.

   What I DON'T like is finding out that an alleged "client" is just
   a well-funded-but-incompetent engineering student.

   -Andrew


=== Andrew Warren --- RemoveMEaiwTakeThisOuTspamcypress.com
=== Architect, IPD Systems Engineering
=== Cypress Semiconductor Corporation
===
=== Opinions expressed above do not
=== necessarily represent those of
=== Cypress Semiconductor Corporation.

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2001\02\27@234355 by Dan Michaels

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Andrew Warren wrote:
>
>    What I DON'T like is finding out that an alleged "client" is just
>    a well-funded-but-incompetent engineering student.
>


In every hierarchy, each employee tends to rise to his level of
incompetence - The Peter Principle.

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'[OT]: Helping Profs. help students'
2001\03\01@094152 by Andrew Warren
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Dan Michaels <spamBeGonePICLISTspamBeGonespamMITVMA.MIT.EDU> wrote:

> > How about adding a new tag to the PICLIST -- something like
> > "[HOMEWORK]:" -- that professors can use to post the details
> > of their assigned projects, so we can match them up against
> > the requests we get in private email?
>
> I really don't believe this is piclist's problem. This is a problem
> that all educators have to learn to recognize and deal with in
> their own fashion.

Dan (and others who've responded similarly):

I should have expressed myself more clearly... I'm not suggesting
that it's my job to help every teacher keep his students honest.
You're right; that's HIS problem.

All I want is something that will help ME (or consultants who feel
the way I do) to recognize that a request I receive for a quote is
actually coming from a student who wants me to do his homework for
him.

The goal isn't to police the behavior of students; it's to give
consultants information which might help determine THEIR actions when
they receive such a request.

-Andy


=== Andrew Warren - TakeThisOuTfastfwdEraseMEspamspam_OUTix.netcom.com
=== Fast Forward Engineering - San Diego, California
=== http://www.geocities.com/SiliconValley/2499

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2001\03\01@095236 by Andrew Warren

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Kübek Tony <PICLISTEraseMEspam.....MITVMA.MIT.EDU> wrote:

> well I assume this is beacuse of mr Jose S. Samonte.

   Actually, no.

   Jose was pretty open about himself and what he wanted:  He knew
   hardly anything about PICs and electronics, and he asked for
   lots of free advice and free code examples.

   I have no problem with that.  I didn't have the time to really
   help him, but at least I knew exactly what he was asking for.

   If, on the other hand, his initial email to me had made him sound
   like a paying client (and if I were still taking new consulting
   business), I might have MADE time for his project.

   Even if he paid what anyone else would for my services, I'd be
   very disappointed if I discovered after I'd finished the job
   that it was actually the final project for his EE degree.

   -Andy


=== Andrew Warren - EraseMEfastfwdspamix.netcom.com
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2001\03\01@120235 by Dan Michaels

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Andy Warren wrote:

>
>Dan (and others who've responded similarly):
>
>I should have expressed myself more clearly... I'm not suggesting
>that it's my job to help every teacher keep his students honest.
>You're right; that's HIS problem.
>
>All I want is something that will help ME (or consultants who feel
>the way I do) to recognize that a request I receive for a quote is
>actually coming from a student who wants me to do his homework for
>him.
>
>The goal isn't to police the behavior of students; it's to give
>consultants information which might help determine THEIR actions when
>they receive such a request.
>


Andy, I understood your concerns from your very first msg. However,
I have not seen any comments from actual instructors indicating they
would want to post their homework assignments to piclist.

There don't "appear" to be many instructors on piclist in the
first place, and the only one responding to this so far, Fr. Tom
McGahee, hasn't indicated he would post his assignments.

Also, believe me when I tell you that an instructor can easily
identify problems such as this. If he/she has a somewhat shaky
student, and suddenly they turn in something of obvious professional
quality, it is very apparent.

My point has been that I don't believe having a [HOMEWORK]: tag
is going to be very effective. I also realize this doesn't help
with your particular dilemma.

best regards,
- dan michaels
================

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2001\03\01@135317 by jamesnewton

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Just to reassure everyone.

I WILL NOT MAKE A [HOMEWORK]: TAG.

My suggestion was that Prof.'s could post on [OT]: tag with [HOMEWORK] in
the subject line.

A subtle but important difference....
...people have enough problems with the tags as it is.

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{Original Message removed}

2001\03\01@221103 by myke predko

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I get about two students requests per week.  I find that end of term, the
requests go up dramatically (basically a lopsided guassian distributions
centered at December 1st and April 1st).  The summers are pretty quiet.


I find I get three types of requests:

1.  The student that is just starting a course, or has been in it for a few
weeks and realizes they need more information or need to find tools, parts
and example circuits/code.  Generally, a few pointers to web sites (ie
Microchip, programmer information and sites with good information) along
with a paragraph or two regarding what type of tools they should have and
assuring them that PICmicro assembler isn't that horrible almost always gets
a "thank you" reply or some follow up questions.

2.  The student's project is partially done, but its deadline is coming up
and they need help getting the project working.  The student rarely
identifies themselves, but I can usually figure that this is a student
project from how the email is written (grammar, spelling, punctuation,
slang).  As an aside: there are a few professors/instructors around that
have to get a more creative - I usually get five or six requests per term
regarding differential drive robots controlled by PICmicros and another half
dozen on how to implement a remote digital thermometer that is connected to
a PC.  My reply consists of asking how they have designed their project and
asking what kind of tools they are using and have they characterized the
problems.  I get a reply back from this type about 50% of the time - the
replies I do get are from the students that are genuinely trying to figure
out the problems themselves.  I can usually guess who will not reply by the
tone of the email (ie demanding).  If I get a reply back, the conversations
usually go on for three or four emails.

3.  The one that comes across as a customer looking for a consultant to do a
quick job - I think this is the type that Andy is complaining about.  This
individual is usually pretty crafty and will make it sound like an
opportunity while not specifically describing the project.  The emails are
generally well written although the return address is usually Yahoo or MSN,
they always seem to come in November/December or March/April and are often
unsigned.  My response is that I do not do consulting work, but they could
try to contact some of the consultants that Microchip has listed on their
web site or put a request on the PICList.  I have never gotten a reply to my
email from this type of request and I have never seen a follow up request on
the PICList.


I'm probably in a bit of a unique position as I do get a lot of newbie
questions - enough to see some trends.  I hope I haven't offended anybody by
buttonholing the different types of student requests that I get.  For the
most part, the requests I get are sincere and I enjoy conversing with the
students (as well as others) because I often learn something from them as
well or I get a chance to look at something from a different perspective.  A
lot of the material for the new PICmicro book and on my web page was a
result of these discussions.


If you've read this far (sorry for the long email), I hope that I haven't
given the impression that I am not willing to help.  I am very happy to
help, but it will usually be in the form of a pointer to the
information/code that is required.

If you are going to ask a question, I hope you can see that the important
thing is to be honest - I'm sure everyone on the list has had trouble
learning some concept or even just getting started and they will help you
get over the rough spots and help you learn the concepts for yourself.

As a wise man once said, it is best to teach a hungry man to fish.

myke

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2001\03\02@005610 by Peter Anderson
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Some professors do read the PIC-LIST!

My policy is that I do not want my students to bother anyone.  (This may be in large part due to the numerous e-mails of assignments I get from students elsewhere which I ignore).  I think I give my students all the tools they need.  I lecture to the assignments, they have ICDs, my lab is open 140 hours a week, they can resposibly discuss work with one another and I work some 25 hours each week in the lab moving from student to student.

Of course, discussion is a part of the design process, and on individual projects I may suggest the student send an e-mail to someone, but that someone tends to be someone I helped in the past.

This should not be interpretted as a criticism of any student who does post thought provoking questions to this list.  Just my policy with my students.

Best wishes.

Peter H Anderson, http://www.phanderson.com, pha(at)phanderson.com
Morgan State University, Baltimore

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