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Wilfrid Laurier University Faculty of Science
December 2, 2016
Canadian Excellence

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Physics & Computer Science

Developing Open Source Software with a Distributed Team (4th year course)

Jun 13/13

If you are interested in getting real experience building a substantial software system as part of a distributed team, you’ll be interested in UCOSP!

UCOSP is a senior undergraduate course, which has been running since September 2008 – see In this course, each development team has students from two or three Canadian universities, and uses a mix of agile and open source processes under the supervision of a faculty or industry lead (mentor) assisted by a graduate student (tutor). Each student registers in the appropriate course at his or her home institution (in our case this course would be CP493 or CP494) and works in tandem with their peers from across the country. During one intensive weekend early in the course, students travel to meet face-to-face and work together.

This course exposes students to the tools, working practices, and issues that are now routine in global software development. Just as importantly, it enables them to get to know their peers from across the country. UCOSP is sponsored by Canadian CS Department Chairs and several industrial partners.

Some details:
- one semester course offered in the fall and in the winter terms
- students must be full-time students in 4th or 5th year with good marks (not on co-op term)
- students must have completed CP317 Software Engineering
- students apply for admittance and are accepted on the basis of grades, responsibility, and maturity
- students enroll in a course at their home university
- local faculty contact handles the paperwork
- grade determined in consultation with program administrator and project mentor
- about the 2nd or 3rd week of the term, students meet their team, mentor and tutor for a face-to-face 'code sprint';  the meeting locations move around (2010 - Toronto; 2011 - Toronto, Vancouver; 2012 - Waterloo, Menlo Park) and expenses are paid by an external industry sponsor

In Fall 2010, we had one Laurier student participate in "The Technology Explorer for IBM DB2" project.  In Fall 2011/Winter 2012, we had students participate in the "ReviewBoard" and "Umple" projects. In Fall 2012, we had one student participate in the "Umple" project.

Due to the amount of planning required for a course of this nature, participants need to be identified early.

If you are interested in being involved, please contact Dr. Nora Znotinas, who is the faculty partner for UCOSP at Laurier ASAP.  

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