Assignments and Grading
Continuous assessment will be used for this course—there is no final exam. Grades will be allocated as follows:
- 15% for attendance;
- 20% for one 25 minute topic presentation. Group presentations provide an opportunity for the class to be exposed to real-world examples or in-depth explorations of techniques related to the topic being discussed for the week;
- 30% for your 25 minute final project group presentation and supporting material;
- 35% for a set of weekly assignments as described in the syllabus which take the form of exercises, tests, or essays. These are retrospective and will reflect on the lessons learned from the previous class.
You will be put into groups at the beginning of the class. Each group will give two presentations: one on a particular topic that is part of the syllabus, and a final project presentation.
The goal of the group presentation is to provide the class with multiple perspectives on the topic for the week—whether in the form of real-world examples based on the experience of participants, or their exploration and research of product management techniques, processes or tools.
The presentations are not just an opportunity for participants to demonstrate their skill in research, collaboration, and delivering presentations. They are also an important source of learning for the rest of the class.
- The group will have 25 minutes for each presentation. You should allocate 20m for your material and 5m for questions and discussion.
- All group members must speak or have a role to play during the presentation.
- Content of the presentation must sufficiently address what is specified by the presentation prompt, but is not limited to it. Supplementary content that will help craft your argument is welcome, just ensure that your presentation falls within the 25-minute limit.
- Beyond the use of slide decks, you may leverage other techniques or tools to enhance student learning. The use of videos, class exercises, re-enactments, student volunteers, user interviews, surveys or other forms of media that can help strengthen your presentation is encouraged.
- Slide decks that were presented must be turned in via the relevant bCourses assignment page at the end of the class.
The presentations will be assessed according to the following criteria:
- Content (5 pts) - Did the presentation have valuable material that was relevant and beneficial to the class? Was it able to sufficiently address what was required by the prompt?
- Organization (5 pts) - Was the presentation well-structured, well-prepared and easy to follow?
- Delivery (5 pts) - Was the manner in which the presentation was delivered engaging enough, with sufficient confidence and preparedness?
- Participation (5 pts) - Did all team members contribute to the presentation and collaborate well with the team? (assessed by peer review)
Final Project Presentation
As part of your group, you will build a business and test multiple hypotheses to validate your business model. In week 2, everybody in the class will come up with their own business idea. Once the week 2 assignment is completed, students should come together in their groups and decide on a business idea as a group (perhaps using the individual business ideas as a starting point).
In week 4, we discuss how to take an experimental approach to product development, and how to design and test product hypotheses. Following week 4’s assignment, you will design and test product hypotheses for your business idea and then test them with real people outside your class, and to evolve your business idea (and potentially pivot) based on what you learn.
In your final presentation, you’ll present the your business model and product canvases, and describe the experiments you performed, what you learned, and the decisions you made as a result. Teams must describe at least three experiments in order to have a chance to achieve the highest grade.
Presentations must follow the same guidelines (above) as the topic presentations. However there will be an additional 10 points available for supporting material:
- A completed and up-to-date business model canvas, value proposition canvas, proto-personas, and empathy maps (4 points);
- Documentation for each experiment, including hypothesis, expected result, description of experiment, results, and what you decided based on the results (2 points per experiment).
About halfway through the semester (the date will be announced on bCourses), your business model canvas, value proposition canvas, proto-personas, empathy maps, and the documentation for your first experiment must be submitted. You will receive 6 points based on this submission. (Note: you are free to change your business model following this submission if your experiment shows the business model will not work.)