Propose a New Feature

From TeachingOpenSource



Propose a New Feature


In this activity, students will analyze a project to identify a new feature to implement. They will document and propose this new feature to the community. To do so, they will need to learn and follow the coding and communication practices of the project community.


What topics and tools does the student need to know prior to beginning this activity?

After successfully completing this activity, the learner should be able to:

What should the student be able to do after completing this activity?

Process Skills
  • Written communication
  • Problem solving
  • Management?
  • Critical thinking


  • Is there background reading material?
  • What is the rationale for this activity?


  • Identify a new feature to be implemented
  • Document the feature
  • Propose the feature

All of this will likely depend on the community's guidelines for proposing features.


  • What will the student hand in?

Notes for Instructors

The remaining sections of this document are intended for the instructor. They are not part of the learning activity that would be given to students.


  • How will the activity be graded?
  • How will learning will be measured? Ideally, there should be a way to measure each of the objectives described above.
  • How will feedback to the student be determined?

Include sample assessment questions/rubrics. Feel free to indicate that the activity itself is not graded, however it would be helpful to include any questions that might be used at a later date to interpret learning, for example on a quiz or exam.

The form of the assessment is expected to vary by assignment. One possible format is the table:

Criteria Level 1 (fail) Level 2 (pass) Level 3 (good) Level 4 (exceptional)
Criterion 1...
Criterion 2...


  • What should the instructor know before using this activity?
  • What are some likely difficulties that an instructor may encounter using this activity?

Suggestions for Open Source Community

Suggestions for an open source community member who is working in conjunction with the instructor.

Additional Information

Area & Unit(s)

What ACM BoK Area and Unit(s) are covered?


What specific topics are addressed? The Computing Curricula 2013 provides a list of topics in Appendix A - The Body of Knowledge (page 58) -


Is this activity easy, medium, or hard?

Estimated Time
to Complete

How long should a typical student take to complete the activity?

Environment /

What does the student need? (e.g. Internet access, IRC client, Git Hub account, LINUX machine, etc.)


Amy Csizmar Dalal, Chris Murphy, and Karl Wurst


Is there another activity on which this activity is based? If so, please provide a link to the original resource.


Under which license is this material made available? We request that you pick a Creative Commons license. We suggest using a template like: {{License CC BY}} or {{License CC BY SA}}