Tuesday, 29 September 2009

Year 4 Study decision time

The time has come to decide what to study next year and the choices are as follows.

• M362 Developing concurrent distributed systems

• M363 Software engineering with objects

• M364 Fundamentals of interaction design

• M359 Relational databases theory and practice

I know some people have studied these courses and I am hoping somebody out there can give me a bit of insight into their experiences or if they would recommend any in particular.

M366 natural and artificial intelligence was on the cards but Reading blogs and peoples feedback I decided against it.

My current view is M362 and M363 or M364, I'm not sure about M363 as it seems like another theory vased course like M256 and I'd like to get back into practical computing.

I'm looking forward to reading peoples thoughts. All opninions welcome!

- Posted from my iPhone


Simon Knights said...

Hi Simon, Thought I would add my tuppence worth.

M359 - I did that a couple of years ago and have to say that it was hard work and the exam was a real pain. If you are really into databases and SQL then go for it - I certainly ended up with a deeper understanding of the whole relation theory thing.

M363 Should be really interesting if you are into programming (which obviously you are). If I was picking a course right now then that is the one that I would go for. I take your point about it being theory based - but my understanding is that it goes into OO theory and Design Patterns in a big way. If you think you will be working on large OO systems in the future then this could be a good one to have done.

M362 Also sounds interesting and I believe is more on the software side of things.

(As an aside, M363 and M362 were the replacements for an earlier 60 point L3 course which I should have done (and wish I had!)).

M366 Is an odd one. When I first read about I thought it sounded brilliant - but I think that I have probably read the same blogs that you have.

M364 Not one that I know, but sounds like it is more focused on the user experience of computing. Could be interesting and I will assume that it covers topics outside the direct realm of computing such as human behavior and psychology as well as design principles etc (I'm guessing here to be honest).

Well, I don't know if any of that has helped or whether it has just clouded the issue for you. Lets hope its the former!

Simon said...

Thanks for your contribution Simon, some great insights. I

I'm thinking m362 and m363 this year and m364,m359 next year. These are the courses that I have to do for my degree avoiding m366.

M364 sounds interesting and as you rightly pointed out it looks into areas such as psychology which will be a refreshing twist to computing studies.

Hope all is well.

Anonymous said...

Hi Simon

Taking M362 exam in the morning. Last for my degree. Overall a good course. Only 1 past exam paper and the exam requires tremendous knowledge retention (rather than application). I am glad there's no grade pressure for me on this one. I preferred M359 but then I like databases more than Java!


fsp said...

M363 is quite rewarding, albeit a bit tedious at times. It continues where M256 left off and I can't recall too much coding.

It wasn't the easiest or most entertaining course (no HoverFrogs!), but it greatly aided my understanding of enterprise-level software architecture. I now skim through books (e.g. Martin Fowler's work) about design patterns/architecture and find myself understanding and applying these concepts.

In the end, M363 has made me a better coder by laying the foundations to a better understanding of real-world software development concerns and practices.

Hope this helps :)