Computer Science 126
General Computer Science
Spring 2011

Course Information | People | Assignments | Lectures | Exams | Booksite


Course description.  An introduction to computer science in the context of scientific, engineering, and commercial applications. The goal of the course is to teach basic principles and practical issues, while at the same time preparing students to use computers effectively for applications in computer science, physics, biology, chemistry, engineering, and other disciplines. Topics include: programming in Java; hardware and software systems; algorithms and data structures; fundamental principles of computation; and scientific computing, including simulation, optimization, and data analysis.

Instructor.  Kevin Wayne.

Lectures.  Lectures meet in Frist 302 on Tuesdays and Thursdays, at 10am or 11am.

Preceptors.  Victor Chen · Doug Clark · Dmitry Drutskoy · Donna Gabai (co-lead) · Nick Jones · Chris Miller · Astrid Prajogo · Patrick Rebeschini · Gordon Stewart · Arman Suleimenov · Xin Tong · Keith Vertanen (co-lead) · Richard Wang.

Precepts.  Precepts meet twice a week on Tuesdays and Thursdays or Wednesdays and Fridays. Precepts begin either February 1 or February 2.

Undergraduate coordinator.  For enrollment problems, see Colleen Kenny-McGinley in CS 210.

Course website.  The course website contains a wealth of information, including precept rosters, office hours, lecture slides, programming assignments, and old exams.

Computing facilities.  Undergraduate lab TAs are available most evenings in Friend Center 017 to provide general help with using your operating system and assist with debugging your programs.

Grading.  Two exams (50%), nine programming assignments (40%), final programming project (10%), and staff discretion. We record grades in Blackboard.

Regrading policy.  Occasionally, we make mistakes. To request a regrade: write a brief note indicating the perceived mistake by the grader, attach it to your graded work, and give it to your preceptor within two weeks of when the graded work was returned.

Exams.  There are 2 two-part exams during the semester. No final exam.

No makeup exams will be considered without a Dean's recommendation and our preapproval.

Programming assignments and final project.  There are weekly programming assignments plus a final programming project, due Mondays at 11pm, beginning February 7.

Required readings.   R. Sedgewick and K. Wayne, Introduction to Programming in Java: An Interdisciplinary Approach, Addison-Wesley, 2007. ISBN 0-321-49805-4. Available at Labyrinth Bookstore, 122 Nassau Street. Also on reserve at Friend library.

Recommended readings.  D. Harel, Computers Ltd.: What They Really Can't Do, Oxford, 2003. ISBN 0-19-860442-4. Available at Labyrinth Bookstore, 122 Nassau Street. Also on reserve at Friend library.