self_assess_xxi_concurrency.pdf

self_assess_xxi_concurrency.pdf - SELF-ASSESSMENT PROCEDURE...

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SELF-ASSESSMENT PROCEDURE XXI A self-assessment procedure on concurrency by Brian A. Rudolph What is Self-Assessment Procedure XXI? This is the 21st self-assessment procedure. All the pre- vious ones are listed on the facing page. The first 13 are available from ACM* in a single loose-leaf binder to which later procedures may be added. This procedure is intended to allow computer profes- sionals to test their knowledge of the general concepts of concurrency, that is, the parallel execution of several processes or tasks. It includes questions concerning ter- minology, formal topics, specifying concurrency, pro- cess coordination, and classical problems. In all except a few cases, there is supposed to be only one correct answer for each of the multiple-choice questions. The next few paragraphs repeat the introduction and instructions given with earlier procedures. Those who read them before may advance directly to the questions. What is Self-Assessment? Self-assessment is based on the idea that a procedure can be devised that will help a person appraise and develop his or her knowledge about a particular topic. It is intended to be an educational experience for a participant. The questions are only the beginning of the procedure. They are developed to help the participant think about the concepts and decide whether to pursue the matter further. * Order number 203640. ACM Order Dept.. P.O. Box 64145, Baltimore. MD 21264. Members-$15. Non-members-$25. 0 1990 ACM OOOl-0762/90/0500-0563 $1.50 The primary motivation of self-assessment is not for an individual to satisfy others about his or her knowl- edge; rather it is for a participant to appraise and de- velop his or her own knowledge. This means that there are several ways to use a self-assessment procedure. Some people will start with the questions. Others will read the answers and refer to the references first. These approaches and others devised by the participants are all acceptable if at the end of the procedure the partici- pant can say, “Yes, this has been a worthwhile experi- ence” or “I have learned something.” How to Use the Self-Assessment Procedure We suggest the following way of using the procedure, but as noted earlier, there are others. This is not a timed exercise; therefore, plan to work with the proce- dure when you have an hour to spare, or you will be shortchanging yourself on this educational experience. Go through the questions, and mark the responses you think are most appropriate. Compare your responses with those suggested by the Committee. In those cases where you differ with the Committee, look up the ref- erences if the subject seems pertinent to you. In those cases in which you agree with the Committee, but feel uncomfortable with the subject matter, and the subject is significant to you, look up the references.
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