Teaching Office WWW/Unix utilities
This page describes some web-based Teaching Office facilities - how to set them up and run them. Routine tasks can be performed using the Control Panel (see right for a partial screen-dump). This lets TO staff switch programs off/on, lets them process and archive replies, etc.
More detail (required when setting up the programs) is provided below where there are also links to further documents of use only to computing staff.
Some of the documents below are User Manuals for the Teaching Office. There are
also Technical Documents for programmers.
- Fast Feedback Facility - this program lets students give anonymous feedback. The
describes how to use wwwphpmaker to
create new versions of the Fast Feedback Facility.
An archive of configuration files is in a folder called
~teachoff/FFF/config and is online at http://www2.eng.cam.ac.uk/~teachoff/configfiles/. The active WWW version is at
- Survey - in 2018 the PartII surveys were changed so that students could be led straight to a page dedicated to a module, with the opportunity to leave comments for future students (rather than the TO). Here's the process -
The current configuration files and an archive of old ones
are online at http://www2.eng.cam.ac.uk/~teachoff/configfiles/. The documentation (there's a
long technical document and a short user guide) gives more details.
- TPL clears the old replies from the database
- TO writes the configuration files for TPL
- TPL creates the survey
- TO checks the survey
- TO runs the Survey monitor and database checker through the year, using
to process survey replies online, producing web graphics for the results, and showing the free-text comments. The Survey satisfaction page gives details on those who've said they're generally satisfied.
- To get text-only output (for achiving, etc), use
- At the end of the year the survey winners page chooses lucky-draw winners. The 1A worries, 1B worries, 2A worries, and the 2B worries pages highlight potential problems
- (new for 2011) Feedback text available for 1A, 1B, and 2A.
- IIA Project Selection and Allocation - the IIA project coordinator (rather than the TO) usually runs this
A brief user guide
guide (January 2018) and a more technical manual (December 2017) are online.
- Best Lecturer - Installed in April 2007.
See the documentation for details.
- Freshers Maths Quiz - Installed in July 2008.
- Maths Quiz (http://www.eng.cam.ac.uk/to/mathsquiz can be used to access it)
- Who hasn't replied
- Processing (TO access only)
- Staff-only access to results (access controlled by
.../staff/.htaccess; file actually used is
.../_staff/freshermathssurvey/ which shares much code with the above-mentioned
- Part I Supervisors (supervisor feedback) -
- a survey installed in Aug 2012.
- survey processing installed in Aug 2012. Access is controlled by the FFF configuration file.
- IIA Supervisions (student feedback) -
- a survey installed in Feb 2011. The module-leader info is set up using ~teachoff/bin/IIAsupervisionsCSV2PHP to process a file provided by the Teaching Office. One year, the file consisted of lines of the following form
code, title, term, lecturer, emailaddress
In 2014, the spreadsheet file that was sent produced lines like the following when saved as a CSV file
3E1,Business economics,Dr A Mina,am793
and processed using ~teachoff/bin/IIAsupervisionsCSV2PHP2014. In 2016,
the spreadsheet file that was sent produced lines like the following when saved as a CSV file
3E1,Business Economics,Module Leader,Soufani,ks437
(i.e. an extra Role column). I removed the extra column and processed using ~teachoff/bin/IIAsupervisionsCSV2PHP2015. In 2017 the spreadsheet file that was sent produced lines like the following when saved as a CSV file
3E1, E, Business Economics, p, M, Dr , A., Rosato, ar915
(group info added etc). The "M" stands for "Mich" - some people are leaders only for a term. ~teachoff/bin/IIAsupervisionsCSV2PHP2017.py (a python 3 script) will process a file called "modules.csv", outputting lines that need to go into ".../IIAsupervisions/courseinfo.php"
- survey processing installed in May 2011. Depends on the same info as the supervisor survey does
- Struct Design Survey
The TO provides a mapping of students to leaders (at least, I think that's what it is). Last time I extracted the info from a file with lines like this
- Sustainable Engineering Survey
This needs the lecturers and lecture titles to be checked before being made available.
- Exposition Survey
If the questions aren't going to be changed, then the survey need only be enabled for it to be ready. For processing, the TO needs to supply the maintainer with a demonstrator-student mapping. Sometimes the mapping is provided by the TO in a text file with lines of this form
but sometimes a Word file is sent, from which the information is extracted manually.
In 2016, ceb4 sent me a CSV file which began with
R.C. Navid,email@example.com,T,1,Mon05,aas41,Mon 09:00 in Library's North Room
A. Watson,firstname.lastname@example.org,T,1,Mon05,aas41,Mon 09:00 in Library's North Room
which is maybe the format to stick with from now on.
If a file (called "expo_setup", say) can be created in the following form
Dr M. L. Oyen
Dr C. E. Rasmussen
should output the code fragment that the processing requires.
- Maths Topics Survey
- Mars Lander Survey
- Integrated Electrical Project Survey
- IIAProjects feedback
The source code for hardcopy production is in
- All Feedback - allfeedback shows the feedback facilities available to the user
- Mark/Lab Session Booking - See the set up page and the list of booking sheets
- Supervisor Needs/Offers - See http://www.eng.cam.ac.uk/teaching/apps/supervisormarket/
- Demonstrator Needs/Offers -
- 1A/B Computing marking schedules -
The PHP code for timetables like the 1APython marking schedule begin with a configuration section where the sessions for lab-group blocks need to be defined. This information comes from the TO.
- IDP workflow -
The frameable version is used. Also available is CSV output, a view of the configuration file (the file needs updating for each new block of students), and a way for tl136 or pjgl2 to delete all entries.
- 1A Statics - The entry point is http://www.eng.cam.ac.uk/to/1AStatics - see the maintainer's handout at
~tl136/doc/other/1AStatics/maintainersnotes.pdf. At the start of the academic year, database tables
Statics1ALocking need to be cleared except for the data for group1 in
- that’s sample data.
Statics1ASupervisorLocking needs to be cleared.
Statics1ASessioninfo needs to be filled with the dates of each session, and a password for each session -
currently done by hand.
If the following pages are used to switch between years it's best to restart the browser before testing another facility.
- tl136 year changer (a way for tl136 to pretend to be in a particular undergraduate year - useful for testing survey and FFF programs)
- hrs year changer (a way for hrs to pretend to be in a particular undergraduate year - useful for testing survey and FFF programs)
- DUE year changer (a way for the DUE to pretend to be in a particular undergraduate year - useful for testing survey and FFF programs)
- ajk61 year changer (a way for ajk61 to pretend to be in a particular undergraduate year - useful for testing survey and FFF programs)
- Mary year changer (a way for melw2 to pretend to be in a particular undergraduate year - useful for testing survey and FFF programs)
CUED's central computing system
Some of the files relating to this aspect of Teaching Office work (not least this web page) are on CUED's central computing system. Teaching Office staff can access these files by typing
(or equivalent) from any CUED Linux/MacOS/Windows machine which has ssh provision. It will let teaching office staff straight in.
Updated September 2018
and Teaching Office