Senior Design

Q: We're a little confused about the exact start date for the official first sprint. Does it start in week 4 or week 5?

A: Since each team may meet with me on a different day of the week, the start date will vary from team to team. My intent is that you will have your sprint plan done by 11pm the night before our week 4 meeting. Your sprint would begin the day of our week 4 meeting and last until 11pm the day before our week 7 meeting. The second sprint for the fall quarter will begin the day of our week 7 meeting and last until 11pm the day before our week 10 meeting (at least in theory... in practice, it may end slightly earlier or later, depending on when you are scheduled to give your presentation since we won't actual have an advisor meeting in week 10).

Q: Do we each have a catch-all overhead task, and if so, what should we put for estimated hours? Or, should we have specific tasks; ie, something like a Plan Finalized Project task and/or a Write Formal Project Proposal Report task?

A: You should try to create specific tasks for what you plan to do instead of having a catch-all. I want you to plan out what you will be doing for the week (or three) so that it is clear to everyone on the team what each person is responsible for doing. You can make adjustments as necessary, but you should start with a reasonable plan for who is doing what.

Q: Do we need to put in 10 hours to senior design every week, or should we just average 10 hours a week over the course of the quarter?

A: Average. I anticipate that the actual time spent on senior design will vary from week to week. Averaging 10 hours per week across the quarter is fine. However, it is important to communicate with the rest of the team so that you don't end up in a situation where someone reduces their effort in a week when others are counting on the results of their work.

Q: We were wondering if descriptions are required for tasks that we create? Both research ones and any regular PBIs or tasks.

A: Yes. Research ones (spikes) should begin with a description of specific things you hope to learn by doing the research. Once work has begun you can comments describing the approach you took and what you discovered. Alternately, you can provide a link to a wiki page that describes this, if you have a significant amount to report.

For the PBIs, you should have a description of the user story that describes what will be possible once the PBI is complete and acceptance criteria that makes it clear when the PBI is done. A helpful thing to think about when writing the acceptance criteria is "do I have what I need to write all appropriate tests for this PBI?" Focus on detailed documentation for the PBIs that you plan to complete in the first few sprints. You can flesh out the ones that will likely be completed in the winter and spring when you get closer to starting those PBIs.

For tasks needed to complete a PBI, the title may or may not be sufficient to describe what needs to be done. Once work has begun on each task, comments should be added describing the progress that is made whenever time is logged to the task.

Last modified: Wednesday, 27-Apr-2016 14:27:49 CDT