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📓 Working with a Dev Team

Enterprise companies, especially larger ones, often assign their developers to development teams. These teams work together to build features and fix bugs. At Epicodus, students work with an assigned team every course section (known as a dev team) and pair with someone new from that team every day in class. At the start of every course section, you will be assigned a new dev team.

A dev team consists of 6 – 10 Epicodus students from the same class. Your dev team will meet together at the start and end of the day. While you will work with your dev team during class, you will always be working on your own when you complete your independent projects.

Start of Class Scrum Meeting

Daily team meetings are a very common — and important — part of a developer's workflow. At tech companies, a daily team meeting usually consists of a brief group check-in at the beginning of the day.

At Epicodus, we call our daily team meetings "Scrum". You'll have a Dev Team Scrum at the start of class and it will be a brief meeting, lasting either 15 or 30 minutes at — just like daily team meetings at tech companies.

Please note that on most days you will also have a Scrum meeting with your entire cohort and instructor(s). Dev Team Scrum is specifically only with your dev team.

Except for the very first day, every Dev Team Scrum will follow the same pattern:

  1. Start by signing in to the Epicodus attendance system, and remind your fellow dev team members to do the same.
  2. Then, make sure everyone is present before beginning the brief group check-in.
  3. Next, conduct a brief group check-in, in which all group members share, answering three questions. We'll cover these three questions below!
  4. Finally, pair up for the day. If there's an odd number of people in your dev team, there will be one group of three.

Questions for the Dev Team Scrum Check-In

Remember: everyone should take a moment to answer the following questions during the Dev Team Scrum check-in.

1. What did you work on during the previous class session or over the weekend?

Since everyone is working from the same curriculum, it's more important to discuss your process as well as any successes or issues you ran into. This is a way to celebrate your daily accomplishments and inform your team of your progress.

2. What are you working on today?

This is an opportunity to emphasize specific areas of focus. Is there a particular area of the day's work that you want to practice more or is there a topic you are enthusiastic about? This is a great way to let everyone know what your goals are for the day.

3. What blocks do you have? What is standing in your way?

Did you struggle with the homework? Did you not get to finish the project during the previous class session? Do you want to work more on how you communicate? Will you be working slower today to focus on understanding concepts? We encourage students to share their struggles. Verbalizing any issues you're having can be a great way to combat impostor syndrome.

End of Class Retrospective

Every day at the end of class, you will meet with your dev team in Discord to discuss how the class went. We call these meetings retrospectives. Retrospective meetings are an Agile development technique where dev teams reflect on the past in order to improve the future by discussing what worked, what didn't, and why. While companies usually don't have daily retrospectives, this is a good practice for students to maximize learning, share work and resources, and get to know each other. In the industry, these meetings typically take place every two to four weeks (depending on the company).

Here are potential topics to cover in the retrospective:

  • Show and tell — what did you create today? Share your screen and walkthrough your code.
  • What did you enjoy the most?
  • What is a bug you fixed? Share your screen and give a walkthrough.
  • What did you struggle with?
  • Share tips and resources you found useful.
  • Give shout-outs to anyone in your group who has helped you or that you appreciate in general.
  • Discuss what you want to do better tomorrow.