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Review Criteria for PICUP Exercise Sets

When an Exercise Set is submitted for publication in the PICUP Collection, it will be sent to PICUP Reviewers who will assess the submission using the following criteria, and will then submit their review using the PICUP Review Form.  (If you would like to request to become a PICUP Reviewer, you can click the Become a Reviewer button above.)

General Evaluation

Content: Is the content appropriate for an undergraduate physics course?

Novelty: Does the topic provide an interesting addition to the standard curriculum?

Computational Innovation: Do the exercises add value to the traditional approach by providing new insights into a problem or by using computational thinking to clarify physics?

First Impressions

Thumbnail (optional): If included, the thumbnail is interesting and captures the essence of the Exercise Set. Included images are appropriate. Their license allows reuse.

Title: Describes the content well.

Description: Captures the essence of the Exercise Set and describes the cool things it does.

Learning Objectives: Provides clear action-oriented descriptions of what students should be able to do after completing the activity. Should identify which exercises correspond to which learning objectives.

Exercise Set Content

Instructor's Guide: Clear and concise. Makes the case for how/why this Exercise Set adds value to the traditional coverage of this topic in undergraduate physics. Includes ideas about how to integrate the exercises in class / lab. Points out issues to be particularly careful about. Possible issues to address: pre-requisites, accuracy, units, issues with initial conditions, mathematical issues (dividing by zero, normalizing), plot scales, common student questions.

Theory: Theory is described at the appropriate level. Complete and correct. Discusses limitations of the model. (Links to appropriate resources for relevant numerical/mathematical methods.) Note, theory can be very brief if this is a topic that already clearly exists within the undergraduate curriculum.

Exercises: Exercises are at the appropriate level. Each exercise is equivalent (in length / complexity) to a problem at the back of the book. The exercises in a set form a coherent whole. Each exercise gives clear instructions as to what to do and what questions need to be answered.

Pseudocode: Clearly lays out the algorithm. Is language agnostic. For ODEs is also agnostic to the method of solution (should be useable to someone who doesn’t use a built-in library)

Code Templates: Code documented. Reasonable variable names. Follows good practices.  Includes a pdf of any notebooks or non-plain-text files.

Solutions: Clearly answers exercises questions and gives sample output for plots (if applicable).

Complete Code: Code documented. Reasonable variable names. Follows good practices.  Includes a pdf of any notebooks or non-plain-text files.