Assignment: Project Proposal

Assignment: Project Proposal

The project proposal consists of three parts:

  1. Forming groups of 2-4 around a common idea or theme to investigate.
  2. Writing a careful proposal that the group will follow in Spring Quarter.
  3. Presenting a short ‘elevator pitch’ for the proposal.

Forming Groups and Choosing a Theme (Due Wed. Feb 26)

You will work on the spring project in groups of 2-4. If you would like to form your own group, turn in a proposed group by the deadline above. However, domain experts may change, add, and substract from groups as they deem appropriate. If you do not specify a groupmates to work with, the domain expert will place you in a group.

Considerations when Forming Groups

The group you form will be the team that you work with going forward. As such, you will have to work together and make decisions together, even if you may not 100% agree with the choices. Thoughtfully putting together a team will help with this process. A few things to consider:

  • Try to agree on a general theme for what you potentially want to investigate in your project.
  • You do not need to have 100% agreement on the proposal, rather you need to be comfortable that a general area of investigation is interesting to you. The specifics of proposals change as you work on it, and you may have to change direction anyway.
  • Discuss how your strengths might complement a teammate’s strengths. A proposal can consist of quasi-independent pieces, that fit individual team-member’s strengths (e.g. Buidling and designing an ML model, a statistical investigation into data generated by a learning model, visualizations for results). All of these would be too much for a single person in a quarter; a team could manage it though.

Proposal (Due Sunday Mar 8)

The proposal will form a plan for your group’s spring quarter project. The proposal will consist of the following parts:

  • A description of the problem, along with its similarity and differences from the problem being studied in the current domain. In particular, it should note the scope of the data being considered for the investigation. Specifying the project output is also required (a report/paper, website, a product that does something).
  • A proposed 6 week schedule with weekly goals and tasks for executing the proposal. (The schedule is 6 weeks to allow for tidying-up and work on communication, as well as for a few set-backs).

Proposal Content Checklist

A thorough proposal should answer the following questions:

  • What set of problems are being investigated? (Or what are you proposing to build, and what problem does that solve)?
  • How do these problems relate to the domain replication project?
    • Has previous work attempted to answer these questions?
    • If not, why are these questions considered interesting? If so, how did they fail?
    • In what way does your investigation address a deficiency in the replication project?
  • What are the specific methods that will be used to attempt to solve (a subset of) the problems in your proposal? Be specific about the data and techniques you plan to use.
  • What is the project output? Is it a paper, website, work of art, tool? If your project analyzes data, what ways do you plan on communicating the analysis? If your project generates data, you still need an analysis of the generated data it produces!
  • For the proposed schedule, look to the domain schedule (result replication) as a guide.

Elevator Pitch (Due Wed Mar 11)

You will need to write and present an Elevator Pitch for your proposal. The elevator pitch should be under two minutes and summarize the project proposal, and its relevance, to a non-specialist. The elevator pitch will be:

  1. Turned in on the due date above to gradescope, in writing.
  2. Presented orally to the domain discussion group (either in section, in lab-hours, or on video, depending on the preference of the domain).