February 7, 2021
A Professor's Holy Grail
A few months ago, I came across https://www.frontendmentor.io/ (opens new window), a website that provides challenges for new web developers to sharpen their skills. Each challenge provides a set of instructions, requirements, screenshots, and resources - everything an ambitious developer might need to build up their portfolio. However, as a professor, it was as if I had discovered the holy grail.
A professor's job is more than just delivering lectures in front of a group of students. It also involves grading assignments, answering emails, providing one-on-one tutoring, and sometimes creating new content and assignments. For me, one of the most challenging parts is the creation of assignments. Coming up with an assignment that meets the desired requirements and is engaging enough to spark a student's interest can be tricky. And the idea is just the first part. After the idea, I then have to build the project, evaluating its difficulty. Then develop the necessary instructions, assets, and examples so the students can do it themselves.
For every assignment I create, I typically have two or three that didn't work. It is a time-consuming part of the job. So, to have a site filled with potential assignments truly is a lifesaver.