Essay Assignments

The following two books contain a wealth of pragmatic advice and philosophy for maturing programmers:

You will write a short essay on the first book (Hunt and Thomas), Anyone who wishes bonus credit may likewise submit an additional essay on the second book (Beck and Andres). This essay assignment is not meant to be burdensome. What’s important to us is that you read the book and reflect on the ideas in it; we believe doing so will plant seeds that grow to influence you for years to come.

Deadlines. The first essay (on Hunt and Thomas) is due by Friday, October 5. The second essay, should you choose to do it, is due by Friday, November 30.

Format. Your essay should be three pages, in 12 point Times Roman font, and double-spaced. That’s only about 750 words—not long at all.

Content. The theme of your essay should be how the book reinforced, challenged, or changed your own philosophy of programming. Assume that the reader is someone who is at your own level of programming knowledge, but has not read the book. Here are some specific prompts that you are welcome but not required to use:

Assessment. Your essay will be graded on this rubric: