Sunday, May 4, 2008

Journal #28: 12-608 Final Thoughts

As I said in the previous post, I felt like all my classes were very unique this semester. Mostly in a good way. This class and my other engineering courses were such a welcome escape from my awful exposure to the "your project is due this day... oh you actually finished? just kidding now we want you to do more" CFA design policy.

When I was asked how to describe this class by other civ-e's, I usually just said, "it's like another level of intro to environmental." That isn't a very accurate description in many ways. Where intro to environmental really revealed the mathematical, biological, and lab aspects of environmental engineering, 12-608 expanded the breadth of the topic and gave me an strong idea of how the same principles can really be applied to anything. Especially life cycle analysis and sustainability concepts, because now I feel like nothing is environmentally safe anymore. Which isn't as bad as it sounds.

I really liked all the different perspectives that were brought to the class by the students, and I think trying to cross-list the course could be a very good thing to improve the diverse ideas. I agree that having it as a general CIT course wouldn't attract too many students. I thought the homeworks challenged me, but weren't overly frustrating and I often just became engaged and enjoyed them. The project and journals have been fun too, and I was glad that the project did not become some 9 page paper or something.

I thought maybe the grading rubric could have been defined earlier in the class. I also think that the class could still have more defined aspects while still being flexible with the grading. Just forcing the students to make a choice about tests, homework, and projects early in the course could allow this. I know that there was kind of a lack of response when Deanna asked for this input in class, but I think if it is made known to the students that they have to pick now in order to create a rubric there could be more input. I also hate debates and feel very awkward during them, but I think they were good for this class and I learned a lot from it.

Either way, I didn't really find any big faults with the class and always found it enjoyable.

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