This is the final post in a weekly series of blog posts I wrote documenting my experience in CS327E, Elements of Databases, for the Elements of Computing Program at The University of Texas at Austin.

Monday April 29th

Presentations continued today of teams overviewing their solutions to the final Projects (a summation of three separate projects). I am enjoying seeing how other teams divided work, how their code functioned, and their team dynamics. I’ll say watching these presentations has been informative to see more perspectives of how people work. As a hopeful future product manager, I’m enjoying seeing the differences between the way teams function and how their members interact.

Wednesday May 1st

Presentations continued today, our last day of class. Tomorrow evening is the exam, let the studying commence! I find that as I am about to study for this final exam, I am not having to try very hard. Professor Downing has structured the class such that you increasingly use the knowledge learned in class in your project, so really this final test is just another way to demonstrate those skills.

Final Thoughts on the Course
This class has been the most beneficial to me in my entire educational pursuit thus far. Professor Downing crafted a class that uniquely blends skills, tools and concepts that are industry standard in a way that mirrors a real world software team. While difficult, this class has pushed me to become a better developer and manager. Even as someone who has used databases, python, APIs, agile, and source control, I have grown as a developer in proficiency, comfort, and speed using these tools and concepts. I have increased my experience working with and managing other developers through both in person and digital communication and issue tracking.

This class prepares students for what they may face in a real world application of these skills, and that is indeed is the most invaluable takeaway from this class. The projects mirrored agile sprints, and each project built upon the previous, providing a final product that demonstrates a much deeper and overarching understanding of skills than each project individually could have done.

This class has pushed me out of my comfort zone, it has challenged me, and I have grown from the experience.

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