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Learning and Teaching

(Usage hints for this presentation)

Computer Structures and Operating Systems 2023
Dr. Jens Lechtenbörger (License Information)


  1. Think of something you are really good at
    • Write it down (won’t be shared with anyone)
  2. Briefly describe how you got to be good at that thing
    • One or two words
  3. Submit how you got to be good at Pingo ( → 796643) qr-pingo-csos2022.png

(Source of activity: [SEI14])


Brain ≈ Muscle

  • Learning involves brain’s long term memory

    Teacher explains brain

    Teacher explains brain” under CC0 1.0; converted from Pixabay

  • Long term memory needs repeated retrieval and practice
    • Spaced out over time
    • Effect: Changes in brain’s proteins
  • (Learning does not happen [solely] in lectures)

Deliberate Practice

Characteristics of Deliberate Practice to acquire expert skills ([Eri08], see also [EKT93],[SEI14])

  1. Task with well-defined goal
  2. Individual motivated to improve
  3. Feedback on current performance
  4. Ample opportunities for repetition and gradual refinements

(Traditional lecturing is “teaching by telling”, does not share any characteristic of Deliberate Practice)

Active Learning

  • Active Learning increases student performance in science, engineering, and mathematics ([FEM+14])
    • Active Learning is an umbrella term for diverse interventions
      • Group problem-solving
      • Worksheets or tutorials completed during class
      • Use of personal response systems with or without peer instruction
      • Studio or workshop course designs
    • Notice: Above interventions share at least 3 of the 4 characteristics of Deliberate Practice
      • (Motivation may increase, but ultimately rests with you)

Quotes from Experts

  • [SR17]: “Saying Goodbye to Lectures in Medical School—Paradigm Shift or Passing Fad?”
    • “60 slides in 45 minutes may seem like an efficient way to teach, but it is unlikely to be an effective way to learn”

CSOS Approach

Initial Problem and Improvement

  • 2016: Classroom response system revealed lack of student understanding
    • Yet, no in-class discussions, leaving me frustrated
      • Waste of our time
  • After introduction of JiTT: Situation improved

Improved Java MX understanding

General Improvements

Improved understanding compared with traditional lecturing

CSOS Teaching History

  • In 2016, I taught CSOS in its entirety
    • With lots of in-class quizzes of questionable effect, as just explained
  • Subsequently, Prof. Dr. Vossen taught CS part, I OS
    • With slightly different flipped classroom approaches
  • Since 2021, I’m teaching CSOS again in its entirety
    • Again with different formats for CS and OS
      • Reuse of CS videos from 2020
      • HTML presentations such as this one for OS
      • With evaluation of both formats
    • With uniform use of JiTT quizzes in both parts, explained next

Just-In-Time Teaching (JiTT)


  • JiTT
    • Teaching and learning strategy based on web-based study assignments (self-learning) and active learner classroom
    • Instance of active learning, which leads to improved learning in general [FEM+14]
    • Instance of flipped/inverted classrooms [LPT00],[BV13]
      • In-class and at-home events flipped
      • Individual computer-based instruction paired with in-class (group) activities
        • Individual learning shaped by individual background and preferences
        • Lectures to discuss questions and work on exercises

Feedback Cycles with JiTT

Feedback cycles with JiTT

Feedback cycles with JiTT” by Jens Lechtenbörger under CC BY-SA 4.0; from GitLab. Includes icons by The Noun Project under CC BY 3.0 US: Meeting by Ainsley Wagoner; knowledge sharing, professor, student, audio lesson, online task, online communication by ProSymbols.

Lessons Learned

Sample Feedback

  • Misunderstandings
    • “JiTT destroys our freedom!”
    • “JiTT tasks are too difficult/open!”
  • Encouragement
    • “JiTT is/was a very good idea and was very helpful to understand the course’s content”
    • “The JiTT-Assignment in combination with the lecture helped to understand the topics a lot!”
    • “Please continue with this type of lecuture!”

Benefits and Challenges

  • Benefits
    • Much more fun in meetings with prepared students
      • Sometimes unbelievably good solutions
    • JiTT tasks helped tremendously to identify misunderstandings and improve self-study material
      • From wording to new larger units
  • Challenges
    • Regarding students
      • Participation in class and in JiTT assignments
      • Workload expectations
    • Regarding myself
      • Increased awareness of hurdles for students

On Last Year’s CSOS Evaluation

  • Only 23 students took part
    • Heterogeneous grade distribution
      • (See notes; from 4*1.0 to 1*4.0, neither 2.3 nor 5.0)
    • Sample quotes
      • Definitely my favourite Informatics module so far. I liked both parts, though I think the CS parts could use some reworking, either with HTML presentations aswell or with new videos.
      • Definitely one of the best lectures I visited.
      • I just don’t see the point of the “non-lectures”.
      • I dont liked JiTT and the HTML5 presentations.
    • Repeated issues
      • English with positive (practice) and negative (additional complexity) comments
      • Maybe too little material for CS, too much for OS

Comments on Workload

  • CSOS is worth 9 credits
    • Almost a third of your weekly workload, maybe 12 hours per week
    • 12 hours = 8 * 90 minutes
      • 3 class sessions
      • Time for 5 sessions remaining
    • Suggestion: Reserve self-study time in your weekly schedules
      • Preparation of class topics
      • Exercise work

Final Remarks

On Expectations

JiTT in CSOS 2022

  • Joint sessions shaped by you!
  • Default plan
    • Tuesday sessions for first two tasks of exercise sheets
    • Wednesday session for general Q&A on exercises
    • Thursdays for Q&A on sample solutions
  • Please use Learnweb for asynchronous discussions
    • MoodleOverflow worked well last year
  • In addition, anonymous pads for synchronous and asynchronous Q&A


License Information

This document is part of an Open Educational Resource (OER) course on Operating Systems. Source code and source files are available on GitLab under free licenses.

Except where otherwise noted, the work “Learning and Teaching”, © 2018, 2021-2022 Jens Lechtenbörger, is published under the Creative Commons license CC BY-SA 4.0.

No warranties are given. The license may not give you all of the permissions necessary for your intended use.

In particular, trademark rights are not licensed under this license. Thus, rights concerning third party logos (e.g., on the title slide) and other (trade-) marks (e.g., “Creative Commons” itself) remain with their respective holders.