[Date Prev][Date Next] [Thread Prev][Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]

Re: A different way of assessing applicants?


Matthew Palmer [2005-06-22 10:06 +1000]:
> I've seen a lot of comments in various places recently from NMs, potential
> NMs, and also DDs (new and long-term) about the unpleasant nature of long
> blocks of essay questions, in terms of both the boredom factor (answering
> long lists of questions isn't everyone's cup of tea) and the fact that they
> don't necessarily assess the applicant's ability to *do* anything except
> reword chunks of Policy and DevRef.

I don't just ask for rewording since that would indeed be too boring.
Usually I ask for providing an example and explain the solution by
giving pointers to the policy. However, I found that asking for
explaining something in the Policy in own words is highly valuable
since it often reveals unclear things and leads to further discussion
which then becomes interesting.

I also use to split up T&S into a theory and a practice part, which is
slightly more interesting.

> So, I'm thinking of switching my assessment method from primarily quizzing
> to mostly activity-based -- that is, asking my applicants to do things
> (preferably real-life things for Debian, where possible) and then analysing
> their work and making judgment based on that.  This moves me to a more
> mentoring role, too, where I can guide and give more concrete feedback to
> the applicant.  It also gets more stuff done for Debian, and shows that the
> applicant can *do*, not just read.

Good idea IMHO. It makes the evaluation less objective, but gives
certainly a better impression of the applicant's dedication. However,
I'm still a friend of theory questions since e. g. maintainer scripts
are too complex to explain all irks and quirks with examples.

> * (For other AMs) Has anyone else tried this in their AM activities? 
> 	Feedback?

I included some practical exercises: Write a real manpage, write some
shell script, finding all bugs in a test package provided by me (and
correct them), fix an RC bug with a patch and possibly an NMU (which I
would sponsor). The feedback about this was really good, my last NMs
liked it (and in fact it was proposed by one).

> * (For other AMs) Would other people be interested in NM templates for
> 	activity-based assessment of applicants?  They'll be pretty
> 	rough-and-ready at first, but should polish up fairly quickly.
> 	Do any AMs who have done this kind of thing before have any existing
> 	examples they would like to share?

I'd be interested. However, my broken "to be corrected" package is
severely out of date and I have to reword the RC bug one a bit, so
it's nothing I'd call "template candidate" for now.

Martin Pitt        http://www.piware.de
Ubuntu Developer   http://www.ubuntu.com
Debian Developer   http://www.debian.org

Attachment: signature.asc
Description: Digital signature

Reply to: