Glossary of Turing Specific Terms

You have probably heard the Turing team, students, and community members use unique vocabulary as they talk about the program. Over the years, Turing has created a set of terms that are specific to the organization and are used regularly on campus and within our community. Some terms were intentionally chosen, others evolved organically as our team named different things within the program. Below you will find a comprehensive list of the internal terms that are unique to Turing.

Please note that many, if not most, of our students come from industries outside of tech and may not know that these terms are not used widely in the industry. As a mentor, it may be helpful to remind them that they should provide context if they use these terms in an interview or networking environment.

General Terms

Achievements “Achievements” actually refer to goals the Turing staff and organization strive to achieve in that calendar year, but optimistically call them Achievements.

Cohort A cohort is the group of students who start the Turing program in the same module. Each module there will be one Front End cohort and one Back End cohort.

Module Turing operates in 6 week cycles of instruction with 1 week off in between each 6 week block of instruction. There are 4 total blocks of instruction which progress numerically. Each Program has a Module 1, 2, 3, and 4. Students must successfully complete all 4 modules in order to graduate the program.

Naming conventions for Modules (and Cohorts) Inning names are created by combining the last two digits of the year with the number associated with the month the module starts. For example, the 2006 inning started in June, 2020. Cohorts are referred to by program (Front End, FE, or Back End, BE) and the module number they started Module 1 in (2006BE and 2006FE).

Inning An inning refers to a specific time period that a 6 block of instruction is taking place in, and is related to the cohort date. Where a student will start in a cohort and graduate with that cohort number, and Inning refers to the current space in time. There are 7 Innings each year.

Inning vs Module vs Cohort Example of use of the terms in a sentence. A student beginning the program in May of 2020, or the 2005 inning, will start with the 2005 Cohort in Module 1. They will complete 4 Modules and graduate with the 2005 Cohort in November of 2020, or in the 2011 Inning.

Intermission Turing operates in 6 week cycles of instruction with 1 week off in between each 6 week block of instruction. The week off in between instructional blocks is called “intermission.”

Turing+ A fellowship program run through Turing and their partner companies created to help recent graduates of Turing get into their first jobs.

Community Terms

Circles Circles refer to the student groups within Turing and are not necessarily technically-focused. These are spaces for students to connect with others within the Turing community, and include interest based circles (yoga, anime) and identity based circles (Black Student Association, parents, Joan Clark Society). Over the years, Turing has used a number of terms for these groups, including possees and affinity groups.

State of Turing Every inning, the Turing staff holds an inning kick-off event with the entire school. Topics covered during this time include graduation, enrollment, and hiring data, staffing updates, curriculum changes, and any other significant news or happenings from within our community. Topics may include how events in the greater tech community (or world) may impact Turing. May be referred to in written communications as SoT.

Code Fair At the end of week 5, Mod 3 and Mod 4 students are invited to share their projects with the rest of the school. Code Fair is an afternoon school-wide event that takes place during the school day. Project groups prepare a brief presentation and demo of their projects, and a small team of judges selects the top projects to move forward into the Demo Night competition in the next module.

Demo Night Demo Night is a Turing event that shares the work of our students with the greater community. Held in the evening during the first week of a module, these events are hosted by a partner company and judged by professionals from the industry. Participants in Demo Night are chosen from the best projects shown in the previous inning’s Code Fair. Demo Night participants are generally students in Mod 4 and recent graduates.

Graduation At the end of every module, the group of students who have completed their time at Turing go through a graduation ceremony that is held on Thursday evening of week 6. Graduating students receive a certificate of completion, and (when in-person events occur) participate in a dinner celebration for family and friends hosted and catered by Turing.

SLC SLC stands for Student Leadership Committee. This is a role taken on by currently enrolled students, serving as the contact point between their cohort and the Turing staff. Students request to serve in SLC roles and facilitate cohort retros, as well as learn management and team building skills. Individuals in this role were previously known as SAB (Student Advisory Board) Reps.

Mentors Turing has a large and involved community, and our Mentors are community members who want to give back and support our students. Mentors are volunteers who work 1:1 with enrolled students to answer technical questions about the curriculum, offer support and advice in the job hunt, and serve as the first networking connection the student may have in the tech industry. Mentors are assigned a mentee in module 1 of the program, and may work with that student for the duration of the time they are enrolled in the program.

Spikes These are facilitated presentations for the community that generally are held on Friday afternoons. These sessions are run by Turing staff member, students, or alums. Topics covered may be technical, but may also be topics of great interest to the session facilitators that would be fun and engaging for students to learn about.

Instructional Terms

DTR DTR stands for “Define The Relationship” and means that two or more people should have an intentional conversation about schedules and processes they can all agree to as they begin work on a project. This is commonly used when student projects begin, and new project teams are getting started on the work.

Norms or Norming Norms can be thought of as standards that are internally co-created by the group they apply to and have been clearly communicated and are understood by all involved parties. These norms are specifically and uniquely chosen, set, and agreed upon by each group, and are not rules that Turing is handing down. “Norming” is the process of reviewing these standards and confirming that all are understood and clear.

Squishy Another term for a 1:1 meeting with an instructor, generally when the meeting does not focus on technical topics and instead is focused on the student’s general well being and emotional health.

Pom Short for Pomodoro, an approach to scheduling work time in cycles of 20-30 minutes of focused effort with a 5-10 minute rest break. Typically, at Turing the term “pom” is used to refer to the break period.

Breakout groups An instructional approach where a full class will be separated into smaller groups for brief portions of class time to encourage discussion, questions, or a dive into a new topic.

Mod 0 A required part-time, fully-remote Turing prep course that is aimed at ensuring all students begin work at Turing with a known set of foundational skills and competencies. Over the course of either two or three weeks, students attend a set of 5 evening sessions run by an instructor. Students must successfully complete Mod 0 before they can start their chosen program.

Mod 5 Module 5 is what the internal team refers to students who have graduated from Turing, and are job hunting. Certain staff members work with graduates throughout this time, supporting the alum in their job hunt until they have been successfully hired.

Mod Team This refers to the instructional team on a specific module. Mod teams are generally made up of two instructors, but may be made up of more depending on the module.

Gear Up Gear Up is an intentionally integrated part of the Turing curriculum including discussions around privilege and oppression, identity, and how to make the tech space more inclusive. Students participate in Gear Ups 2-3x per mod, and the sessions are mandatory.

Assessment Assessments are meant to gauge the skills of students individually and are intended to loosely mimic the technical interview. Assessments are timed, and may be 1:1 with an instructor working through a brief code challenge or may be completed separately and graded after submission. Assessments generally happen in week 3 and week 6 of every module.

Evaluation Evaluations (or Evals) are provided for every project students complete. Instructors provide code review, give feedback, and score the project based on the rubics that are outlined in each project spec.

Assessment vs Evaluation Assessments are 1:1 performance tests used to gauge a student’s understanding and mastery or the material, while evaluations are reviewing and providing feedback on project work that is typically completed in pairs or small groups.

Week 6 Week 6 is the final week of the module, and is when all final projects are due and final assessments occur. This is the week when official decisions are made around advancing a student forward to the next module or having them repeat the current module. Week 6 is generally a high-stress period of time for students.

Mid-mods At the midpoint of the module, instructors hold mid-module (or mid-mod) assessments for students. These are meant to provide instructors with deeper insight into the skills and understanding the student has developed so far in the module, what topics they need more practice with, and helps identify students who may be on the path to repeating so instructors can work to provide instructional interventions and support for them.

Portfolios At the end of week 6, students will participate in a portfolio presentation to their instructors. This provides students space to reflect back on their accomplishments of the last 6 weeks, areas of success, and opportunities for growth, as well as gain practice speaking about themselves and the technical material they have learned about.

Repeat, Repeating, Repeater If a student struggles to master the content of a module, they will be asked to repeat that particular module. Students who are repeating a module are often called repeaters. While the ability to repeat is one of the strengths of the program at Turing (it allows students to maximize their time, and solidify their understanding of difficult topics), there is a stigma associated with it. Students are often frustrated and discouraged upon hearing that they will be repeating. For mentors and those close to students, it is important to emphasize the benefits of repeating a module, and to support them as they work to maximize their second time through the material.

Learning Goals Turing uses Project Based Learning, meaning that students solidify and understand the content and topics being taught through hands-on application of the concepts they learn about in class. Each project has a specific set of learning goals rooted in the curriculum structure of the module. By building each project, the student will have successfully gained understanding of all the topics taught in a module.

Rubrics Every project has a comprehensive grading rubric associated with it. Instructors use these rubrics when scoring projects to assure that they are being unbiased and fair in their evaluation of the submitted work.

IronFE A student founded and led initiative begun by Front End students in later modules to help support Front End students in early modules. This group generally meets once a week or so, and they work through various code challenges and white boarding exercises together.

Rock and Pebble A student founded and led initiative, where module 2 students assign themselves to an incoming module 1 student, and support and guide them during their first module at Turing.