Comp. Sci. 250 Introduction to Computation Fall, 2016

Instructor: Neil Immerman

We will be using Moodle this semester: Here is the is: Cs 250 Moodle Page. We will use Moodle for handing in assignments, doing on-line quizzes about the readings, and you will be able to use moodle to see how you are doing so far in the class. The reading quizzes will be due the morning before the relevant lecture, but much better to complete them the night before. The idea for these quizzes is to encourage you to do the reading and think about it before coming to class.

We will be using Piazza this semester: Please Sign Up for this class on Piazza. On the Piazza page will be all questions and answers about 250 including readings, homeworks, etc. Please use Piazza to interact with your classmates, TAs, and professor about all course material. It is helpful for you to post questions and try to answer other student's questions. Please be careful that you do not give away answers to assigned problems in your questions or answers. I am very pleased with the textbook: Discrete Mathematics with Applications, Fourth Edition by Susanna S. Epp. In my opinion, the content, explanations, examples, and problems are all excellent. This will thus make your and my experience in this course much more rewarding and fun. If you fully understand the reading and can correctly do 90% of the problems, that will earn you an A in the course. If you can correctly do about 75% of the problems, that should get you a C.

I plan to start each class with a few clicker questions, similar to the questions on the reading quiz you have just taken. This will give me a sense of how well you are understanding the new topics that you have just read about. Please bring your clicker to every class, including the first one. Note that the required reading to be completed before the first class is Section 1.1 of the text..

Please refer to this 250 course webpage for general information, e.g., what this course is about, requirements, grading policy, late homework policy, cheating policy, etc.

Please refer to the 250 syllabus webpage for readings to be completed before class, homework assignments, and handouts.

What is this course about? This course presents a rigorous introduction to the language of mathematics. Mathematics is the only field where you can be completely precise about what you are talking about and where you can be absolutely certain that what you are saying is correct. In my opinion, this makes mathematics a sina qua non for an excellent computer scientist.

Course Technology: Everyone must buy an iClicker2, register it via the lower right of the moodle course page and bring it to every lecture. Phone apps to simulate the iClicker2 will not be acceptable. The frequency setting on your iClicker2 should be TBD. See OIT iClicker2 Info for more information.

Meeting times: Lectures: MWF 1:25 -- 2:15, Goessmann 64

Discussion Sections:
Disc A W 11:15-12:05 LGRC A301
Disc B W 12:20-1:10 AEBN 119
Disc C W 11:15-12:05 LGRT 121
Disc D W 12:20-1:10 ELAB 306

First meeting: Sep. 7, 1:25 p.m. (no discussion the first week)

Prerequisites: (CMPSCI 187 or ECE242) and MATH 132.

Work: Credit towards you final grade will be apportioned as follows:

How to Succeed in CS250

Cooperation/Cheating: Students should talk to each other about the subject matter of this class and help each other. It is fine to discuss the readings, lectures, and problems and ask questions about them. I encourage such questions in class as well as elsewhere. However, there is a line past which you must not go, e.g., copying a solution from a fellow student, book, website, etc. will cause you to fail the course, or worse! The same goes for posting or sharing the solution of an assigned problem. If a significant part of one of your solutions is due to someone else, or something you've read then you must acknowledge your source! Failure to do so is a serious academic violation. Of course, even after you acknowledge your source you must still understand your solution and write it in your own words. Copying a solution from the web, a book or classmate will result in failure even if you acknowledge your source, unless you put it in quotation marks and say something like, "Here is Amy's solution, but I don't understand it enough to absorb it and write it in my own words." However, this won't get you much credit. Any form of presenting someone else's work as your own will result in failure in the course.

Office Hours: M 3-4, W 2:30- 3:30, and by appointment. I am delighted to answer questions and discuss the course material -- broadly construed -- during and after class, and during my office hours.