It was a beautiful day to be stationed on the 9th floor of NYU’s Kimmel Center. With floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking Washington Square and Chelsea at our backs, each group of our QSAT class presented its final results to guest critics J.D. Godchaux of NiJeL.org and Alyssa Wright of Mapzen. A potluck snack table and an additional guest (Clàudia’s friend Nori) added a festive air to the excitement that often surrounds the last day of class.
As I mentioned at the end of class, I am quite proud of each group’s leap forward in the last weeks and days of class. After midterms, in which most projects were established, and regular check-ins with each group, I thought I knew what to expect for the final presentations, but every group exceeded my expectations. Congratulations to all of this year’s QSAT students.
In the first half of this semester, the focus was primarily on building technical skills, while in the second half, the focus was on contextualization (background literature review, user studies, persona design). Add to this a guest speaker to spark discussion in each class, and it’s a lot to pack into a semester. I think we had a good balance of topics and a great balance of students, but I think the challenge for me in the next iteration of this class is to think through some sequencing issues: perhaps ask students to build simpler, faster prototypes so that they can collect data over longer periods of time, and cover persona design and lit review earlier in the semester. This could make the start of the semester top-heavy, so it could make sense to have fewer speakers (though I feel that the speakers really help me as an instructor).
But back to the present. Here are QSAT 2015’s final projects, in order of presentation on April 28. You can review the progression of each project, and my comments on project progress, by launching student blogs from the Class Blogs page.
Above: Class photo from finals day. Top, left to right: Changyeon, Bartosz, Michael, Will, Matt, Dimas, Tong, Tanya, Kania, Graham. Bottom, left to right: Greg, Justin, Varun, me, Clàudia.