Teaching Special Seminar - Reza Farivar, "The Opportunities and Challenges of Teaching Online Systems Courses at Scale"
Online courses with large enrollment numbers open exciting new frontiers for teaching topics in the Systems area. They allow flexibility, accessibility, and affordability for the students. Furthermore, there is a huge potential for hands-on learning at each student’s desired learning pace. At the same time, there are challenges with the medium that, if not tackled, can diminish student learning. Among them, there is the challenge of keeping student motivated without face-to-face interaction. Furthermore, developing autograders that are available 24/7 and architected as Cloud-based systems is a software engineering effort. In this seminar, I will present my experience teaching courses in Cloud Computing and Big Data topics, and will discuss some strategies to overcome these challenges and create a successful online learning experience.
Reza Farivar received his Ph.D. in Computer Engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2012. He is a practitioner in the Cloud Computing and Distributed Computing industry and has held technical and leadership positions at companies like Yahoo, Capital One, and Twilio. In addition to his industry experience, he has been teaching Cloud Computing and Big Data courses at the University of Illinois since 2017. These courses have been a main component of the Cloud Computing track at the MCS/DS program. Utilizing his practical knowledge from industry, he teaches courses that cover the latest Cloud Computing and Big Data information to the students, imparting practical skills to succeed in their careers.