Getting Help

Having questions or getting stuck on something is entirely expected in the learning process. If you find something challenging with your studies, that is a sign you are learning! Learning is not something that you need to do alone though! In fact, connecting with your peers or asking a member of the course staff for help can add extreme depth to your knowledge.

  • Synchronous Help (Office Hours): One place to go to get help is our Office Hours hosted throughout the week. TAs staff office hours for many hours a day to provide you the help you need when you need it! This is a great place to go if you want to review a particular course concept, work on a practice problem with the help of a TA or your peers, or get help on one of the take-home assessments if you are running into difficulties.

  • Asynchronous Help (Ed Discussion): With a class of our size, directly emailing a member of the course staff is not always recommended. There are many of you and only few of us, so if you email one person directly we can’t make a guarantee how quickly we can respond! To alleviate this one-on-one communication of email, we have a course discussion board that will be a much more lively place for discussion and a way to make sure you can get helped more quickly. The message board is set up so that all of the course staff can help you, which will make it more likely for you to receive a quicker response!

Ed Tips

  • If you are asking a general question about the course logistics or content, you can make a public post. This way other students can benefit from seeing your question, and you can even answer each other’s questions to share your perspectives!
    • If you want, you can choose to post anonymously so that other students in the course can’t see your name. Note that anonymous posting does not hide your identity from the course staff.
  • You’re encouraged to answer each other’s questions as well! Explaining a topic to someone else (even on a discussion board) is a great way to help you better understand the material The course staff will still look over student answers and can nicely point out some misconception if there is one so that everyone benefits.
  • If you have a question that’s pretty specific to your homework solution, or, is about some personal details that you would not want to share with the class (e.g., DRS accommodations), you can make a private post on Ed that is only visible to the course staff. This way, any member of the staff can respond to get you the help you need!
  • For sensitive matters that you only want to discuss with Hunter, you can instead email Hunter if that makes you feel more comfortable. Note that the response time for Hunter’s email is longer than posting on the Ed board.


Photo of Hunter Schafer

Office Hours

Tues: 11 - 1

Hunter Schafer he/him/his


Hi there! 👋 My name is Hunter! I’ve lived in Seattle for almost my whole life after a brief stint in Alaska, where I was born, and a couple of years in Minnesota. I did my undergrad and masters here at UW in the Paul G. Allen School of Computer Science & Engineering, and now, I work here full-time on the Allen School faculty!

Funnily enough, I had absolutely no idea what computer science was when I started at UW. I took CSE 142 on a whim and enjoyed it enough to continue on to CSE 143, but not enough to commit to it as a field of study. It wasn’t until I became a teaching assistant for the 14x series did I really find my passion for computer science: teaching computer science. Since then, I’ve shaped my college and post-college career around teaching computer science. Since graduating with my masters, I’ve worked here at the Allen School as a Teaching Professor.

Outside of school and work, I usually spend most of my time hanging out with friends: just enjoying quality time or going out and exploring new restaurants and coffee shops. While living through the inside-times, I’ve tried to make a routine with some of my available free time: I’ve gotten into reading and cooking more regularly, I started practicing yoga, and I even tried my hand at streaming on Twitch (all while drinking questionably unhealthy amounts of coffee).

Talk with me about your favorite coffee shops or restaurants around Seattle, I’m always looking for new places to check out! Good book, podcast, or game recommendations are great too!

Teaching Assistants

Photo of Alex Knowlton

Alex Knowlton he/him/his


Quiz Section: AA

Hi all! I’m Alex and super excited to TA this quarter! I’m a junior studying Electrical Engineering, focusing on VLSI and Embedded Systems. I love data analysis and this class was a lot of fun for me, so I’m hoping to be able to pass that on as much as I can.

In my spare time, I enjoy playing chess, practicing Jiu-Jitsu, fishing, or working on awesome projects.

I’m not a CS major, but I enjoy learning Python, and I’ve found that knowing Python in-depth impresses a lot of people, both employers and lab partners alike. I’m hyped to meet everyone!

Photo of CJ Rieth

CJ Rieth he/him/his


Quiz Section: AH

Hello everyone! My name is CJ and I’m a third year studying Computer Science and minoring in Music. This is my first quarter TAing for CSE 163, so I am very excited to get started! When it comes to CS, I am especially interested in low level computer systems and architecture, with Operating Systems being one of my favorite topics.

I’m from California (Bay Area represent!) but I have really fallen in love with Seattle during the 3-ish years I’ve been living here, rain and gloom included. If you couldn’t tell from my picture and minor choice, I really love playing and listening to music when I am not grinding CS. I’m currently a member of our Husky Marching Band and I played in the Campus Philharmonia Orchestra back before COVID hit. Music has been a huge part of my life, and I really love exploring the intersection of the arts and programming, so if that interests you I’d love to chat!

Photo of Dylan Renard

Dylan Renard he/him/his


Quiz Section: AB

Hi my name is Dylan Renard! I’m a third year Biochemistry major minoring in Data Science. When I’m not coding up a storm, I like working on building rockets with UWSARP, snowboarding, hanging out with friends and enjoying the great outdoors in the PNW. CSE 163 is a really fun and exciting class where you’ll learn important skills in Data Science programming that can apply to many fields of interest! I look forward to helping each and everyone of you on your learning journeys as we explore Python programming together! Feel free to reach out over email if you have any questions both about the course or to chat about the exciting world of data science!

Photo of Dylan Stockard

Dylan Stockard he/him/his


Quiz Section: AD

Hello! I’m Dylan and I’m a third-year Electrical Engineering student. I know that makes you think “circuits and robots”, but my focus is actually in signal processing and data science! This means I spend most of my time coding rather than playing with wires. I want to use my knowledge of data science to aid wildlife conservation efforts, and I have particular interests in protecting snow leopards, rhinos, and manta rays.

I have lived in Kirkland all my life (20 min. drive from the UW), and like most natives I love to spend time outdoors biking, hiking, and camping. I also am an avid photographer (I am a TA for CSE 131 if you’re interested in photography!) and beginning to learn videography.

My last major interest has to be mixed martial arts. I am currently a member of the UW Boxing team, but I love learning Kickboxing, wrestling, Jiu Jitsu, and so on. If any of you are martial artists or follow martial arts such as the UFC then I would always be happy to talk about it!

Photo of Ece Oz

Ece Oz she/her/hers


Quiz Section: TBD

Hello all, my name is Ece! I am from Turkey and I am a senior majoring in Informatics (Data Science). CSE 163 was one of my favorite courses at UW, partly because Hunter is an amazing professor and also because we get to explore so many fascinating Data Programming tools and concepts! I am very excited to be a TA again for this course and meet everyone in the upcoming weeks! In my free time, I love playing volleyball and basketball, baking, and watching movies. Come hang out during my office hours if you need any help with course materials or have any movie recommendations! 😊

Photo of Esteban Safranchik

Esteban Safranchik he/him/his


Quiz Section: AG

Hello! My name is Esteban, and I’m a second-year CSE Ph.D. student from Argentina. Super excited to become a TA for CSE 163! In my free time, I enjoy cooking (but not baking, I’m awfully bad at that), working out, and anything car-related.

I’m super passionate about research in machine learning and algorithms to make sense of noisy data. Feel free to stop by during my office hours to talk about research, class, or anything data-related!

Photo of Gabby Rackner

Gabby Rackner she/her/hers


Quiz Section: AA

Hi folks! My name is Gabby and I’m a Senior studying GIS and Data Science within the Geography Department. I love Machine Learning and have tons of experience with Python. This is my first quarter being a TA for CSE 163 but I really enjoyed this class and can’t wait to meet everyone! Besides being a student I love to run ultramarathons, hike and garden (right now I’m growing mushrooms!). Please let me know if you have questions throughout the quarter.

Photo of Ivan Belikov

Ivan Belikov he/him/his


Quiz Section: AF

Hey everyone!!! I’m Ivan and I am a third year student studying data science. I am originally from Dallas, Texas so the PNW has definitely been a huge change of scenery/environment for me. Although I still love Texas, I really like the diverse food and nature of the PNW. I love hanging out with friends, playing sports, working out, and generally any goodtime!

I know that my name and looks can be kinda confusing. I have a very “Russian sounding” name but a not very “Russian looking” face. This can all be explained with one simple fact about me: I am Russian and Indonesian. I am very connected with both my Russian and Indonesian side, particularly my Indonesian side though. I spent a lot of my childhood summers in Jakarta, Indonesia. So if any of you have been to Indonesia/Russia or are interested in visiting, I’d love to talk with you about it!

This quarter will be my first quarter as a TA for CSE 163 and I am super excited! I took CSE 163 the spring quarter of my sophomore year and absolutely loved it. I learned so many new things from the class and received a lot of helpful advice from Hunter and the TA’s from that quarter. After taking the class, I knew that I wanted to TA for the class at the soonest possible opportunity I could and now here I am! As you get to know me, you’ll see that I am a pretty talkative person and will talk to anyone about anything. So please don’t hesitate to come by my office hours to ask any questions or to simply just chat.

Photo of Kailey Tou

Kailey Tou she/her/hers


Quiz Section: AF

Hello! I’m Kailey, a junior studying Computer Science. I was originally a Mechanical Engineering student but decided to switch over to CSE after taking this class. CSE 163 was the first CSE class I took here and I had a lot of fun, so I hope you all enjoy it too! In my free time, I like reading, baking, and going out for walks. If you have any questions or want to chat, feel free to stop by my office hours :)

Photo of Karen Velderrain-Lopez

Karen Velderrain-Lopez she/her/hers


Quiz Section: AC

Hi y’all!! I’m Karen and I am a third year majoring in Computer Engineering. I was born and raised here in Redmond and my favorite parts of the PNW are the coffee and the boba. CSE 163 was my first CSE class here at the UW and I had an amazing experience; it’s what helped push me to apply to CompE, and although it can be tough at times, it was definitely the right choice for me.

Come by to chat about anything above or anything else - I’m sure we have at least something in common 😊

Photo of Madrona Maling

Madrona Maling she/her/hers


Quiz Section: AG

Heyo, my name is Madrona! I consider Seattle and London to be my two hometowns as I was born and briefly lived in the latter but have grown up in the former. As a Seattleite I absolutely love anything outdoors… camping and white water rafting are some of my favorite things to do. To reset, I love going up into the mountains and laying under the stars. I also consider myself a poet and a potter (in two senses) and have really gotten into working with clay over quarantine. I am a junior computer science major who is looking to minor in data science, partly because of how much I love this class! I took this class my freshman year and didn’t expect to TA so early in my college career, but the excellent professing of Hunter and the interesting material in this course pulled me in, so here I am 5 quarters later! Feel free to pop by my office hours to ask any questions or to just chat!!

Photo of Paul Pham

Paul Pham he/him/his


Quiz Section: AE

Hey everyone! I’m a senior studying Informatics and Education, Communities, and Organizations (ECO). I’m also a Seattle native and I eat a lot so hit me up if you want to know—or know of—some good eating spots! When I’m not studying, working, or eating, I have tons of hobbies! Ask me about my many mechanical keyboards, cooking, coffee, Shotokan Karate at UW (the club of which I am the President), and/or videogames. sigh I’ll never financially recover from this.

Photo of Priti Das

Priti Das she/her/hers


Quiz Section: AD

Hello! My name is Priti and I’m a junior majoring in Computer Science and minoring in Informatics. In my free time, I enjoy dancing, traveling, watching movies, and trying new food places around campus. Let me know if you have any recommendations! I am also a part of UW‘s competitive Bollywood fusion dance team, Kahaani, where we travel nationally. I am super excited to be TAing 163 this quarter! Please feel free to reach out to ask any questions or just chat.

Photo of Rit Shah

Rit Shah he/him/his


Quiz Section: AC

Hello all, my name is Rit and I have been TAing for 3 quarters!

Photo of Ryan Siu

Ryan Siu he/him/his


Quiz Section: AI

Hi there! I was born and raised in Northern California where I developed a keen interest in good food and videogames. I came to UW right out of high school pursuing a degree in CS and TAing for a few quarters along the way. In my free time I’ve been brushing up on my soup-making skills and learning how to record some songs. Feel free to ask me about music, cooking, or anything else on your mind.

Photo of Suh Young Choi

Suh Young Choi she/her/hers


Quiz Section: AE

Hi folks! I’m Suh Young, and I’m a junior double-majoring in Statistics and Classics. Unconventional combination, but hey, both involve urns to some degree! I did most of my growing up in Northeast Arkansas and I’ve been vaguely adulting in Seattle for the past few years.

This is my first quarter TA’ing for CSE 163, and I’m super excited for it! I’m quite fond of CSE 163 and Python in general. I think machine learning and data analysis are both pretty neat, and this class is a great intro to both topics! Fun fact: this was the only CS class at the UW I didn’t pull any all-nighters for! (I did take it in the summer, though, so it’s completely possible I never saw the sun go down…)

I try to be a pretty avid reader and writer in addition to keeping my math and coding skills sharp. Some of my not-very-CSE-related interests include Shakespearean tragedy, language learning, European musicals, and the Marvel Cinematic/Disney-Plus’ed Universe. Come down to office hours for questions, chill vibes, and/or impromptu puns.

Photo of Trevor Garrood

Trevor Garrood he/him/his


Quiz Section: AI

Hi! My name is Trevor and I’m a Senior studying Electrical Engineering with a focus in Embedded Computing Systems. I am passionate about computer science and all things Python. CSE 163 is one of my favorite courses at UW, and I’m excited to work with everyone this quarter! Outside of class, I play for the UW Ice Hockey team, rock-climb, take photos, socialize with friends, and bike. Feel free to reach out with any and all questions!

Photo of Wen Qiu

Wen Qiu she/her/hers


Quiz Section: AH

Hello! My name is Wen Qiu and I am currently a Master’s student studying Computer Science at UW. I came from Guangzhou, China and after 6 years being in the U.S. I still miss the delicious dimsum back home.

I had internship experience in UX design and software engineering, so feel free to reach out if you want to learn about what it is like working in the industry and how to prep for interviews. In my free time, I enjoy playing and watching video games and doing digital sketches. I am very excited to work with you all to get the most out of this class especially in this new in-person format!

Photo of Zoe Kaputa

Zoe Kaputa she/her/hers


Quiz Section: AB

Hi! My name is Zoe, and one of your 163 TAs this quarter! I’m originally from Connecticut but moved to Seattle for college. I’m a junior studying Computer Science and minoring in Digital Arts and Experimental Media. Along with TAing this quarter, I’m working as part of 2 research teams. One is developing an app used for HIV testing, and the other is developing and studying data related to street-level accessibility. I’m excited to be working with you all this quarter to help you learn and succeed!