CMU Course Review

Year

2016

Project Background

This is a web application for students at Carnegie Mellon University, listing the courses at the university including ratings and reviews. It was developed as a part of 15112 course at the university.

Project Description

I had experienced some difficulty while exploring courses at the university and sought to build this as a course project. I realized the needed information was already made available by the university, however was navigating it and making sense was out of it was inconvenient. So I created this application to display the relevant information in a easy to consume manner for the students.

Design Objective

The challenge was part design challenge and part technical challenge. I built web-scrapers to scrape information off the university resources and populated my database with it. I ran algorithms on the information to extract information from the depth of available data and display it as simple ratings. To make the service more useful I added a course review collection, moderation and ratings engine. I wanted the application to be mobile friendly and had to be cautious about how it would render on smaller screens and intensity of computation on the client side.
The user interface had to be dead simple opting for use of color only where needed and clear viewspace to enhance legibility in reading text information. It had to adapt smoothly for desktops and mobile applications. I stuck with the Material Design language developed by Google.

Outcome

It was a great experience to build this and exposed me to the implementation of design decisions. The way designs are implemented are also very important factors affecting the overall outcome.
The application itself has been very successful with the number of hits increasing on a monthly basis. The application appears 5th on Google when searching for ‘cmu course reviews’.
I am still extending this project by building features to track courses for the students.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Tools

The app was built on the popular Python+Django web-framework for back-end and HTML, CSS, jQuery and Javascript for the front-end.

Credits

CMU SoC
CMU FCE
CMU Scotty Labs
CMU Scotty Labs Course API
CMU 15-112 Team
Materialize CSS
Peity Graphs
Jets.js

Link

https://cmucoursereviews.pythonanywhere.com/

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s