Princeton University

Computer Science 510
Programming Languages
Andrew Appel

Spring 2017

General Information       Schedule       Policies
Summary: A hands-on introduction to the use of formal methods for reasoning about software, and for specifying and reasoning about programming languages. Students will use an interactive proof assistant to learn about logic and its applications to proofs of program correctness, to operational and axiomatic semantics of programming languages, and to type systems. Also, an introduction to functional programming languages.

Administrative Information

Lectures: MW 11:00-12:20, Room: CS 105
Labs: Fridays 10-12, optional

Professor: Andrew Appel - 306 CS Building - 258-4627
To make an appointment to see me, just ask me after class, or e-mail.

Teaching Assistant: Olivier Savary Belanger, 214 CS Building,

Use Piazza for homework questions. Better yet: come to Lab, get real-time acoustic 3-D holographic assistance.

Textbooks: Our main texts will be Software Foundations by Pierce et al., and Verified Functional Algorithms by Appel; both are available free online. You can download the whole things as (gzipped tar files) sf.tgz and vfa.tgz, or (zip files) and

We will use the Coq 8.5 Reference Manual and the Coq 8.5 Standard Library

We will use the Objective Caml manual.

Other required reading (later in the semester):

Dafny tutorial, by Rustan Leino, 2011.

Boolean Satisfiability Solvers: Techniques and Extensions by G. Weissenbacher and S. Malik, in Tools for Analysis and Verification of Software Safety and Security, T. Nipkow, O. Grumberg, B. Hauptmann, G. Kalus, editors, IOS Press, NATO Science for Peace and Security Series, Spring 2012.

Software: We will use the following software.

The Coq theorem prover, version 8.5pl3. It is free software, and you should install it on your own computer (the download page at is for Coq 8.6; get 8.5pl3 here.] .

The Objective Caml dialect of the ML programming language. This is free software. It is installed on, on, and on OIT cluster computers. Or it's easy to install on your own computers.