M250 and TT284 are go!

A runner at the starting block and so are M250 and TT284
Photo by Braden Collum on Unsplash

In a couple of days, the Open University will fire the starting pistol on M250 and TT284 and these and other modules will officially be underway. For some, the year will feel almost over given how far ahead they have got since the module websites opened.

Alas, I am not quite in that boat. I have made a start but nowhere near even TMA 01 yet. To the chagrin of those much further ahead, neither module team has released the next TMA yet. I think I prefer the sense of mystery over what lies ahead.

I am still trying to get my head around how to approach TT284 Web Technologies. Previous modules and indeed M250, Object-oriented Java Programming, have a week-by-week planner. It is clear what you need to study each week.

TT284 gives you the whole of Block 1, an introduction to basic web technologies such as html and CSS. You have six weeks to get through all of this, a case study and TMA 01. In fairness, the Open University split Block 1 into six parts. However, the module planner could make this clearer.

The other question is when do I attempt the case study? At the same time or after I have completed the main block materials? So, I have a question or two for my first tutorial, which is this weekend. All the tutorial dates appeared a week ago and, as usual, I am all signed up. 

The Open University organise M250 around a week-by-week planner, which I find reassuring. There is a core textbook, Barnes & Kolling’s Objects First with Java – A Practical Introduction Using BlueJ. Each week or two, you work through a chapter with a companion guide written by the Open University. 

There is a lot more I am still trying to digest. It is part of the fun at this time of the year before the module officially starts.

On 7 September, the module websites opened as planned. Well, TT284 did and M250 followed sometime later. The module teams did not upload everything straight away. The first TMAs and some of the online resource materials trickled out over the next week. 

A couple of days later, I had my first and probably only delivery of physical module materials for this year. A print copy of the M250 textbook arrived all by itself. There would have also been a print of copy of the Java reference guide. However, the module team decided there was no need since we will be doing the exam remotely this year.  

Ah, I miss the heady days of Stage 1 with a big box full of books for TM111 and TM112! No such luck with M250 and TT284.

About a week ago, the Open University revealed the identity of our tutors. I have maintained my record of not having the same tutor twice. At the time of writing, I have not heard from either of my tutors. It is customary for tutors to send a welcome email to students prior to the official start of the module.

Overall, I am still just as excited to start both modules as I was in my previous post, Almost Time for M250 and TT284. I am looking forward to both modules because they have a strong practical component and I enjoy programming. I have the suspicion that there will be more than a little report writing in TT284. Nevertheless, I hope to take to it like a duck to water.

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